Where can one day and one tank of gaso­line take you?

The Covington News - - Front page - By Tharon Gid­dens tgid­dens@cov­

Where to go this sum­mer?

The North Ge­or­gia High­lands once known for pro­duc­tion of moon­shine are now gain­ing a rep­u­ta­tion for a potable bet­ter suited to a more so­phis­ti­cated palate.

There are some award-win­ning wines com­ing from the vine­yards of north Ge­or­gia, vin­tages that earn medals in in­ter­na­tional com­pe­ti­tions. But even if your tastes run more to sweet and un­re­fined down-home mus­ca­dine or black­berry con­coc­tions, you can make a great week­end of a tour of the area’s winer­ies.

There are sev­eral in the Dahlonega area and oth­ers about the state. Learn more at geor­giaw­ine. com.

At the top of the state, a few miles north and west of Young Har­ris, you’ll find Crane Creek Vine­yards.

The pas­toral view from its deck and gar­den is un­sur­passed, mak­ing it a fa­vorite stop for tour­ing tasters. The 12-acre vine­yard also plays host to wed­dings and other events.

The tast­ing room and kitchen are in an old con­verted moun­tain cot­tage just off a coun­try road. The wine se­lec­tion is mod­est but there’s some­thing for ev­ery­one.

At some winer­ies you pay a fee for tast­ing a cer­tain num­ber of va­ri­eties, but not on a re­cent visit here. Staff is at­ten­tive and help­ful.

Soups and sand­wiches are avail­able 11 a. m. to 5 p. m. on Satur­days. Tast­ing room hours are 11 a. m. to 6 p. m. Tues- day through Satur­day and from 1 to 5 p. m. on Sun­days through De­cem­ber.

Crane Creek will play host to a tomato fes­ti­val from 11 a. m. to 6 pm. Satur­day, Aug. 20, with mu­sic by Corn­bread Ted and the But­ter­beans. Tick­ets will be avail­able at the door and will cost $ 20 for adults, $ 10 for ages 13 to 20, and no charge for younger chil­dren. Tick­ets will in­clude a trip through the food bar. A wine tast­ing and sou­venir glass are in­cluded in the price for ages 21 and older. Learn more at cranecreekvine­yards. com.

Tharon Gid­dens/the Cov­ing­ton News

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