Conneaut and Vino: Part 1 of 2

Saturday and Sunday, Brian and I escaped daily life and for the first time, together, we left Jameson with Brian’s parents and drove off into the sunset off to wine country (again).

I can barely choose amongst the many amazing photos which ones to share. So I’m not choosing, just splitting the post into two. Yes, I can have it all.

On Saturday afternoon, we arrived at Laurello’s for lunch. I myself had a pre-lunch on the way since I neglected my breakfast and preferred not to be a cranky monster by the time we finally ate. In any case, I never pass up food, so we had a sweet chilled eggplant dish on crackers and roasted red pepper pizza.

I was a little disappointed in the wine selection, but only because they didn’t have my usual favorite (Josephine). However, Brian and I did enjoy a glass of the Cabernet Franc, and took home some bottles.

Alright, alright. Pictures! And, the star of the show.

I know, I know. It doesn’t look like much.

Usually when we drive up to the wineries, we stay in what’s called Grand River Valley. However, because we were staying the night at a lovely B&B, we decided to venture further afield, to Conneaut. This one above came highly recommended by Brian’s parents.

It is a special place. Markko Vineyard sits, not untouched by time, but collecting time.

And puppies! You are taken in by this place now, for sure.

When we pulled up, we were a little uncertain. The entrance, off to the right, is noted with a faded chalkboard sign. We went in through the side, missing the sign. An older lady saw us and started pulling down the wine glasses for samples.

We started off with the reds, Cabernet Sauvignon.

I had a hard time focusing on my wine. I was torn between my taste buds and my camera eye.

Around the small room were years of trinkets and antiques stowed away on a wide upper shelf, collecting cobwebs.

We finished the reds and moved on to chardonnays.

And this lady? She was old school.

She rinsed out our wineglasses with more wine: these $30+ bottles of wine. She poured some in, swirled, and dumped into this bucket, before giving us clear glasses of chardonnay.

I’m usually not a fan of chardonnay, but perhaps I just hadn’t met the right one yet. The first one here that I tried, I loved.

Another turn around the room, and I saw more.

So careful in processing these photos to try and retain the vision I had while there.

And my favorite, this leaf, pinned up plain against the wall.

I told Brian as we left the winery that the trip already felt complete.

We weren’t done yet, though we were almost done with Conneaut. Up the road is Tarsitano, a winery and cafe housed in a barn, and recommended by Arnie himself from Markko for their food.

A completely different atmosphere than what we left, this place was vibrant and bright. They were completely booked for dinner (not to worry as we already planned on dining at Ferrantes).

The wine here was eclectic: Brian had a sample of unfiltered “Lemberger” wine; I tried the Mia. We settled on glasses on the front porch and I dreamed of fall.

Okay, not really. Almost though. My Riesling smelled and tasted of apples.

As we left, I noticed their front herb garden, with basil and thyme and cucumbers. The food did smell delicious. I think we’ll be back.

We rounded out the night at Ferrantes, where I had a great seafood dish. Finally, well-cooked mussels! And even later, we made sure to visit South River, our old favorite. And finally we ended up here.

This lovely cabin is where I leave off today. It’s our bed and breakfast where we stayed and it had charm like Markko’s (though it has more “planned” clutter and without the cobwebs). I’m excited to share this place with you tomorrow.

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