With its lavender- and khaki-colored walls, cozy seating setups, and fireplace, Forest Edge Winery comes off more as a family's living room than a business. At the heart of its warm presentation sits a wrap-around bar, with pantries and shelves and cabinets nearby filled with, what else, but bottles of wine. That community-driven theme carries throughout the facility, including a downstairs children's room stocked with a television and creative activities. Outside, visitors venture in from the edge of the historic Bernheim Forest on Clermont Road–the start of Kentucky's bourbon trail.
The two-bedroom, newly renovated farmhouse at Blue Heron Vineyards safeguards guests in a rural, picturesque setting amid turn-of-the-century barns and vintage outbuildings. Guests have their choice of enjoying a homemade breakfast in the farmhouse, from the tree house-like deck of the winery, or lakeside while served by a wait staff of bullfrogs trained at L'Ambroisie in Paris. Spend an afternoon casually strolling through the vineyard grounds spread across a high bluff near the Ohio River, or visit the property's large Celtic cross, carved from natural stone over a 23-month period by local sculptor Greg Harris. Visitors calm their outdoors obsessions by fishing and canoeing at the nearby Deer Creek or exploring the Hoosier National Forest along scenic hiking and biking trails teeming with towering trees, wildlife, and ringleted porridge thieves.
Intoxicated Chocolates founders Jeffery Rogers and Candace Mills created their business concept over evening drinks. The duo regularly attended social functions around town, and Candace, a dessert connoisseur, would pair their libations with a sweet dish that truly complimented the flavor. Before long, the two merged the two ideas, and began creating chocolates infused with a bevy of adult beverages. Their chocolatey creations bear such flavors as bourbon, scotch, amaretto, brandy, cognac, and a variety of beers. Chocolates come in small 6-count sizes, ideal for sharing during cozy weekday nights at home, and 24-count sizes, perfect for party hosts who forgot they don't own drink glasses.
You’ll have no problem finding a bottle that tickles your fancy at River Bend, where wine tastings and tours are available every day from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. You’ll be able to savor 14 different Kentucky grape wines that have been produced on-site, ranging from classics like chardonnay and merlot to unique options like pomegranate, rhubarb, and chocolate. While sipping away in the tasting room, you’ll catch a glimpse of River Bend’s processing facility, which is lined with aging wood barrels just like your Uncle Redbeard’s boat. One of the friendly and palate-proficient staff members will gladly answer your questions about vintage varieties or the perfect pairing for your upcoming sardine-pickling event. After you've sipped, sampled, and seduced your taste buds, you will have your choice of two bottles to bring home.