It’s a familiar debate, at least for me.  You finally agree on a date (no easy task) but then where to go?  Winery or Brewery?  Charleville Vineyard and Microbrewery may be the perfect compromise.  It’s located in Ste. Genevieve, Missouri along the Route du Vin Wine Trail, only an hour and a half from downtown St. Louis. And it’s such a pretty spot! The winery is perched high on a hill for a perfect view of the rolling hills of Saline Creek Valley.

Tastings: Beer and Wine tastings were complimentary and we all quickly found something we loved. They offer 11 different wines (everything from a late harvest Chardonnel to an oak barrel aged Norton) and 4 different microbrews, plus various seasonal microbrews.

Picnic Anyone? Charleville is picnic friendly so we brought a blanket and some tasty cheese and sausage.  We enjoyed local products like: Baetje Farms peppery goat cheese and Oberle sausage.  The goat cheese is  shaped into a heart. I love that! Both are available in grocery stores and some gas stations in the St. Louis area.

Can’t pry yourself away and want to spend the night? On weekends, they also offer a two room Bed & Breakfast in a beautifully renovated 1860’s log cabin adjacent to the tasting room. The cabin was originally located in St. Mary’s, Missouri and was donated to Charleville in 2004 by the Bruckerhoff Brothers.

Quick Beer Review: Hoptimistic IPA — My beer of choice for the day.


Appearance: See above – The color is a hazy orange and copper with a minimal off white head.

Aroma: Yummy caramel, sweet and fruity.

Taste: A nice balance of initial malty sweetness with a slightly bitter finish.

Description from the website:
It’s always interesting to see how my personal taste matches up with the brewer’s description. Here is Charleville’s description on their website: Hoptimistic IPA(India pale ale) has intense hop bitterness and flavor. This ale is further characterized by fruity, floral and citrus-like aromas due to American-variety hops. This copper/orange hued ale has a nicely balanced medium maltiness which contributes to a medium body that goes down easy, leaving a lingering bitterness that is hard to resist.

Note: If you are new to beer reviews I like this rating sheet.

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