TIPSY TOURIST: Boordy Vineyards

Boordy wine await in the tasting room.

Boordy wines await in the tasting room.

An occasional series of bars, taverns, saloons, watering holes of note — not that we’re advocating tipsiness, of course. 

TipsyTourist13Maryland has a surprising array of wineries dotting the countryside. The state’s oldest, Boordy Vineyards is located on a winding road in a picturesque valley of Baltimore County (but easy to find).

The winery opens every day for sales and tastings with tours offered at 2 and 3:30 p.m. On the tours, visitors get a look at the the vineyard before heading into winery for a lesson on the making of Boordy’s wines. Tastings follow — and if you can’t make a tour, you can certainly stop for a tasting.

The standard tasting is $5 for the most popular wines and a logo glass to take home. A Landmark tasting costs a little more and includes some of the reserve wines. And although you also get a souvenir glass, your ounce pours come in a Riedel crystal glass. The wine shop stocks not only their wines, but an array of wine-related gifts and accessories.

Under a blazing hot summer sun, grapes are ripening in Boordy's vineyards.

Under a blazing hot summer sun, grapes are ripening in Boordy’s vineyards.

Boordy has been making wine since the 1940s. Long Green Valley has been its home since the DeFord family took over the operation in the 1980s. Since then, the line has expanded to include “Just for Fun” wines like Viva Sangria and Jazz Berry — bright, fruity with extra spice — and their Landmark series designed to showcase their own grapes grown here and in Frederick County.

In fact, in an effort to raise the quality of the Boordy wines, the DeFords have replanted their vines and rebuilt their winemaking operations in the pst few years — at a cost of $3.3 million. If the Landmark wines are any indication, they made the right decision. See the Baltimore Sun story for the details.

If you come to their winery, you’ll need at least an hour to taste the wines — but come for a tour if you’ve never had a chance to learn about wine-making. In mid-week, you might have the place all to yourselves to relax in the cozy tasting room. Or stop by for one of Boordy’s special events, an evening or afternoon of music, entertainment and food to go with that glass of wine.

Drawings of some of Boordy's buildings appear on some of its wines' labels.

Drawings of Boordy’s buildings appear on some of its wines’ labels.

© Text and photos Mary K. Tilghman

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If you have a favorite spot you’d like to see here on Thirsty Thursday, let me know. 

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