A Delicious Day Trip From Ouray, Enjoy a Wine Tasting and Meal!
A bit of a drive from Ouray, but well worth it, many of the wineries in Southwest Colorado are only open to the public by appointment, but they are always happy to have people come visit. We headed north about an hour drive from Ouray on Highway 550 past Olathe, and up onto California Mesa, driving through farm land, orchards and vineyards.
Olathe has 3 wineries, Garrett Estate Cellars, which is where we were headed, Mountain View Winery and Cottonwood Cellars. The road dead ends in the vineyard, we arrive to the sun setting. The vines are just beginning to bud, spring.
Entering the tasting area we are greeted by Mitch Garrett, the head of marketing for the winery.
Garrett Estate is a family run business with 3 generations participating. We start to try their selection of wines paired with cheese from Rocking W Cheese also in Olathe. Rocking W has some really amazing cheeses. We tried their Jalapeno Jack, which is not spicy at all, just fresh and flavorful. My other favorites are Tomato Basil, Portobello Leek, Garlic Chive and Farmers Veggie. They also make amazing Egg Nog in the winter.
Then we went on a tour of the facility. We started in the vineyards; they currently have 35 acres, but are planting almost 20 more. They have the capacity to plant 80 acres of vines. From the vineyards we go to the crushing area and then to the fermenting room.
We end in the bottling and casing room, the bottling machine can bottle, cork and label 4 cases at a time. They make all dry wines and all the whites are fermented in stainless steel.
As we explored the winery and socialized with the other guests, the aromas of dinner began wafting through the building. We were ushered back to the tasting room where lovely tables, set by Two Sister Restaurant and Catering, awaited us. Our first course was a delicious salad with crusted cheese on top paired with a dry Reisling. Second course, a roasted game hen with veggies and wild rice decorated with sliced apples, and paired with a Gewurztraminer. Dessert was a raspberry cheesecake with fresh raspberries, whipped cream and chocolate drizzle, paired with their Pheasant Run Red, which is a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Savenion and Syrah.
We ended the evening with more wine, great conversation, and the opportunity to purchase some great wine to take home.
Right now Garrett Estate and Rocking W Cheese are working on doing a
combined tasting room in the town of Olathe so they will be more accessible, so stay tuned for that. In Ouray you can buy Garrett Estate wine at Ouray Liquors.
When you book a room at the Box Canyon Lodge & Hot Springs, we can arrange your very own special evening at this or one of the other fabulous wineries in Southwest Colorado.
Ever the wine enthusiast and farm to table promoter, Faith Parry is the brains and braun of the Ouray Wine, Chocolate and Cheese festival. She tirelessly explores hidden gems, and shares with us experiences and adventures that otherwise we wouldn't know were so fabulous! Lasy month, FaitRich and some other local businesses took part in a wine dinner in Olathe. Southwest Colorado is a treasure trove of talented people all eager to share their passion for a variety of creativity from wine and cheese, to the Ridgway MoonWalk.