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LaBelle Winery: More than just a Winery

By Elisha Neubauer

Some dreams are with you from childhood, while others find you later on, altering the path of your adulthood indefinitely. The latter is what happened to Amy LaBelle, owner and founder of LaBelle Winery, when she visited a small winery in Nova Scotia, Canada, and set her on the path to what was to become LaBelle Winery, Bistro, and Event Center.

LaBelle describes the event as a 'Lighting Bolt Moment,' on her website. While on vacation from her day job as an attorney of an investment firm, LaBelle visited a small winery in Nova Scotia, Canada. Immediately, she was hit by what some may call an "Ah Ha" feeling- that déjà Vu feeling that THIS is what you are meant to be doing. Realizing this was her dream, LaBelle set out to achieve it by any means necessary, learning the art of wine making in her free time and saving every penny from her day job to launch her business.

The Winery has now been making wine commercially since 2005 and has risen to be one of the top producers in the North East. LaBelle Winery currently churns out over 80,000 gallons per year, offering wines created from the following grape varities: Petite Amie, Chancellor, Cayuga, Noiret, Serval Blanc, Petite Pearl and Briana. "The winemaker's specialty is making world class award winning wines with cold hardy grape," says Michelle Thornton, Director of Sales, Business and Program Development at LaBelle Winery. "Amy LaBelle also created a culinary line called The Winemaker's Kitchen. This line captures the best in cooking enhancements, such as three types of cooking wines that do not contain sodium, so are not only wonderful for cooking but can be used to prepare cocktails."

Operating on eleven acres of land, the winery is home to a state of the art facility in which a wine cellar, tasting room, gift shop, bistro, art gallery and event center are housed. "The Tasting room is open during open winery hours and we also offer tastings as a flight at the table if dining in our Bistro," Thornton tells us. "A tasting is a fantastic and fun way to get introduced to our wine varieties, which may be relatively new to some wine lovers." With over thirty-two unique varieties of wine available, there are plenty of flavors to taste and discover at LaBelle Winery.

The 20,000 square foot facility has only been part of the operation since 2012, but has gained widespread popularity for its bistro and event capabilities. "The bistro has been part of our operation since we opened this new facility but it has certainly evolved based on our customers' preferences, requests as well as the creativity of our culinary team," Thornton explains. "The Bistro at LaBelle Winery is a great spot to dine, with seating inside-within the tasting room, or in the Art Gallery at LaBelle Winery or al fresco, under the beautiful red umbrellas overlooking the Vineyards."

According to Thornton, the menu in the Bistro is based on a farm to fork methodology. "It is our mission to bring the best and freshest food available to our customers, she says. "We harvest a large amount of produce from The Farm at LaBelle Winery on a daily basis, so you can't get any fresher that that!"

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About The Author

Elisha Neubauer is a freelance editor, ghostwriter, book reviewer, and author. She is...

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