We went to Frederick this weekend for antique shopping and by day’s end we were drinking wine, including local Maryland wine. We knew we wanted to check out The Wine Kitchen but walking down North East Street from an antique store, I saw huge steel wine tanks inside an old brick warehouse…the home of Frederick Cellars. So we popped in.

Frederick Cellars’ warehouse dates back to 1904 when it was a Crystal Ice House. Now it serves as wine-making facility and tasting room. Peggy invited us up to the long tall tasting bar for a wine flight with the backdrop of steel tanks and oak barrels. Emily and Charlie own the winery and tend to the vineyards sitting about 12 miles west of Frederick. They also source grapes from other vineyards in Maryland (their website says they source from other U.S. regions as well). One of eight wineries on The Frederick Wine Trail, they’ve been open five and half years.

We tasted five of their wines from Dry White (City Lights) to Dry Red (Cabernet Sauvignon 2008, Heritage Red 2009) to Semi-Sweet (Frederick Red and Eye of the Oriole). My favorite out of the five…

City Lights

  • Varietal: Seyval, Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Traminette
  • Aroma: Crisp, fruity
  • Taste: Tart fruit with a nice finish, slight sweet notes
  • Price: $15
  • My thoughts: Great summer wine pairing salads and grilled chicken. 1% residual sugar but sweetness isn’t overpowering.

Unfortunately they were out of the Rosé which I bet is pretty tasty as their Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon have potential. Their labels are gorgeous, all done by local artists depicting local scenes.

Maryland’s wine industry now has 54 wineries producing 400 wines. There are eight Wine Trails across the state to explore. And there’s a new Maryland Wine Passport you can pick up at any participating winery. Keep track of your visits in your passport and online and get rewards like discounted event tickets, access to special receptions, etc…

Cheers to Maryland’s wine scene and the only in town winery, Frederick Cellars!