Cartecay Vineyards: A Little Gem in Gilmer County

The tasting room decorated for the holidays.

Amongst the famed apple orchards of Ellijay in Gilmer County, Georgia, lies the county’s first vineyard, Cartecay Vineyards. Named for the region of the county in which the vineyard is situated, Cartecay, is Cherokee for Bread Valley.
The vineyard was originally a working farm, dating back to circa 1890. The original farm grew corn and hay, grazed cattle and raised hogs and mules.

 When Cartecay Vineyards acquired the farm, it had been inactive for quite some time.  The farm now exists as a vineyard and created by combining the original farm layout with the specific needs of growing grapes.

The Southern Appalachians in North Georgia are ideal for growing wine grapes. The elevation, the soil and the climate combine to produce quality wine grapes and subsequently, fine wines.  The terroir of Cartecay allows the vines to grow, age and produce grapes of the highest quality, which in turn produces wine of the highest quality.
Cartecay Vineyards was planted in the Spring of 2008 with two varieties, Vidal Blanc and Merlot. Since 2008 four more varieties have been planted; Traminette - my personal favorite - Norton (Cynthiana), Catawba and Cabernet Sauvignon, with more planned.
The atmosphere at this small vineyard is delightful.  It has a wood burning stove, chimney, outside patio, trails through the property and wonderful wine! I've spent many hours there sipping wine, listening to music and chatting with the charming staff. The tasting sizes are outstanding and the price includes a tasting glass.  After your first visit, you'll want to visit again and again ...

A view of the tasting barn's patio and deck.

The wood-burning stove makes this corner quite cozy.

Norton vines in winter.

A view from the entrance patio.

The charming chimney.


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Bonnie Morét is an award-winning photographer recognized by The Georgia Council of the Arts as "an exceptional representation of contemporary Georgia art work." Her photography is featured on Georgia Public Broadcast's Georgia Traveler. Her exhibitions include Fifth Annual Exposure Awards at Musee du Louvre in Paris, France, Art Takes Miami at Scope Art during Art Basel Miami, Metro Montage XIII at the Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art, World of Water at the Georgia Aquarium, Open Walls at Black Box Gallery in Portland, Oregon, Wholly Georgia: A Look at the Effects of Southern Religious Culture, sponsored by the Art History League and Georgia State University, at Mint Gallery in Atlanta, Georgia, 6x6 at the Rochester Contemporary Arts Center in Rochester, New York, @Phonography: Dialogue in the Wireless Age, at 3 Ring Circus in New Orleans, Louisiana, and About Lands and Lives of the Civil War at the 6th Cavalry Museum in Ft. Oglethorpe, Georgia. Her photography appears in Modern Luxury/The Atlantan, Jezebel Magazine, and hangs in the executive offices at the Georgia State Capitol as part of the Art of Georgia exhibit. Corporate clients include Atlanta Ballet, Atlanta History Center, Chanel Cosmetics, Christian Dior Cosmetics, Sharp Mountain Vineyards, PM Realty Group, Granite Properties, Road Atlanta, Patrón Tequila, StubHub, CBM Records and The Washington Auto Show.