Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Fairmont Edition: Heston Farm Winery & Distillery


Heston Farm is a fairly new addition to the dozen or so wineries in West Virginia. However, they aren't new to making whiskey. Located in Fairmont, the winery and distillery portion of the farm are only about a year old. The family has been involved in farming since the Revolutionary War, and made wine on the side.


The 200-acre farm near the Tygart River has an outdoor pavilion for weddings and other events. They have llamas! But the winery/distillery area has been the main attraction for me. It's open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday. Private tours are available. Downstairs, you can try all their different wines and moonshines. I think upstairs you can rent for other events.

For about $6 (that's what it was for me last time), you get a Heston Farms wine glass and a sample of all the wines: Bastion (Semi-Sweet Red), Dog and Pony Show (Sweet Red), Dolly Llama (Semi-Sweet White), Jade's Sweet Reward (Rose Table Wine), Prudence & Penelope (Sweet White), Spring Peeper (Chardonnay) and Spring Peeper (Merlot). They have even more than that now, I believe, but the website doesn't list them all.

You can even taste the moonshine. The Pinchgut Hollow Distillery has: Buckwheat, Corn, Honey Peach and Apple Pie (served in cute pig bottles). It's open Monday through Saturday 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.

But you know I couldn't ignore the fact that they also have food! They have specials every day, and a few places to dine outside. Recently, they had their Heston Arts & Music Festival, and I spend the majority of my Saturday there.


It was so packed, we actually had to park down near the original location with the pavilion and be carted up to the main area. They had bands playing all day long on the small stage near the building, and artisans had tents set up showcasing their work. You could do wine tastings and purchase food, of course.

Typically, the restaurant is open Monday through Wednesday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Thursday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.

The menu had things like gazpacho, bbq ribs, a meat and cheese board, a burger, and peach turnover. The thing that stood out to me was the bruschetta platter. One - I had just paid $10 for the festival, and Two - I didn't have much cash left. The platter was $9, so I went for it. After waiting in line, I put my order in and received a number to take back to my table.

Soon enough, I had a platter full of their house crostini with marinated tomatoes, olive tapenade, roasted garlic and cheese. As well as a glass of Prudence & Penelope - my fav. I must say, I was quite impressed. The flavors were delicate yet bold and everything blended together well. I wasn't sure what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised. I ate the entire thing, and I even scooped up the leftover toppings to eat them sans crostini, too.

I also sampled from the meat and cheese board, which had assorted meats and cheeses, with crostini, fresh fruit, and their house mustard. I loved this slightly spicy mustard - it had a little kick to it, but in a good way. Really, the food here is good, the wine is good, and with events like these, it 's a great time. If you have a chance to go, check it out. The area is gorgeous, and the people are friendly.

For more information, call 304-534-2516 or visit www.hestonfarm.com.

Grade: A
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