Vermont currently permits direct shipping from approved wineries, as long as shipments to a given consumer do not exceed 12 cases per calendar year. Certain common carriers such as UPS will not ship alcoholic products to this region, however, as of 2006, FedEx has been approved to ship wine directly to consumers in Vermont.
Out of all of the wine clubs we’ve reviewed, we’ve listed our favorites here. These are our top wine clubs that ship to Vermont:
The beginning of Vermont’s wine industry was rather unconventional. In 1997, the state’s first winery opened with the unique purpose of protecting Vermont’s rural land from commercial development. By offering an alternative agricultural endeavor, the Snow Farm Winery’s mission encouraged farmers to keep land “open and working.” As a relatively new industry, vintners are only beginning to explore the state’s winemaking potential. However, winemakers quickly discovered why the state’s wine industry had been so long delayed: brutal northern winters. With a short growing season and frigid winters, a limited variety of grapes can be cultivated in Vermont. Thanks to grape breeding programs at the University of Minnesota, northern states have a growing number of cold-hardy vines at their disposal. These up-and-coming varieties include Marquette, Frontenac, St. Croix, La Crescent, Riesling, and Traminette. Some wineries also use grapes grown in neighboring states such as New York. Additionally, Vermont has a successful history of apple and fruit growing as well as beekeeping, which is reflected by the state’s high quality meads, ciders, and fruit wines.
Still in its early stages, the Vermont wine industry currently encompasses nearly twenty wineries and vineyards. Most of the state’s wineries run on a seasonal basis, opening in late spring and closing after the fall harvest:
- Boyden Valley Winery & Spirits
- Caledonia Spirits
- Charlotte Village Winery
- East Shore Vineyard
- Eden Ice Cider
- Fresh Tracks Farm & Winery
- Grand View Winery
- Hillis’ Sugarbush Farm & Vineyard
- Honora Winery
- Huntington River Vineyard
- Lincoln Peak Winery
- Neshobe River Winery
- Putney Mountain Winery
- Shelburne Vineyard
- Snowfarm Winery
While Vermont’s cold winters certainly present challenges to vintners, the state is one of the only areas in the country that produces ice wine and ice cider. Typically a desert wine, ice wine is produced from grapes that were allowed to freeze while still on the vine. Similarly, ice cider is made from frozen vats of apple cider. These sweet cold-climate wines are celebrated each February in the annual Vermont Ice Wine Festival. If you find yourself on a Vermont skiing holiday this winter, be sure to sample some of the state’s fine ice wines and ciders!
Downtown Burlington is home to the Vermont Wine School, an institution offering classes to both advanced level industry professionals and casual wine enthusiasts alike through two programs of study: Wine and Spirits Education Trust and the French Wine Scholar certification. In addition to classes, the school also offers daily wine tastings at the Vin Bar and Shop. For any wine enthusiast, a trip to the charming city of Burlington will not be complete without a visit to the Vermont Wine School!