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PennShore Vineyards

Erie's Must-Visit Wineries

Guest Blogger - Frankie Girl

Tuesday Oct 26th, 2021

Although perhaps not quite as famous as places like Napa Valley or Sonoma, Lake Erie Wine Country is a fantastic destination for serious wine lovers. The Lake Erie American Viticultural Area, on the southern shore of the Great Lake, is the largest wine region in the US outside of California, with over 20,000 acres of vineyards. On the other side of the Canadian border, the North Shore is Ontario’s southernmost wine appellation, with a selection of truly impressive Canadian wineries.

Tours are available to the wineries through local tours such as Rupp Limousine.  Arrive in style! Or make it an overnight trip and pack your bags for a wine-flavored holiday in the MidWest, take a look at our favorite tasting spots in Lake Erie Wine Country.

If you think that planning a cruise is easy, try organizing a tour of the fantastic wineries in Lake Erie Wine Country! The area is packed with amazing places to taste wine as well as charming places to stay, which makes exploring the fantastic wines of Lake Erie a brilliant way to spend a vacation.

Johnson Estate Winery

With stunning vistas of rolling hills covered in vines, as well as the magnificent lake Erie, Johnson Estate Winery is an impressive place to visit before you even get to the wine. However, the grapes are, of course, the main event, and the delicious creations from this excellent winery are a match for even the most discerning of palates.

Must-try wine: Sparkling Traminette, a wine made from a hardy, cold climate grape with lovely aromas of lychee and rose with notes of spice in the finish.

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Johnson Estate Winery

21 Brix Winery 

Surrounded by vines (unsurprisingly) and cherry orchards (perhaps more surprisingly), 21 Brix is a charming destination. The surrounding scenery provides the perfect backdrop to discover their excellent range of some of the best wines in the region, with a full complement of varietals on offer. Their specially constructed tasting room is a delightful spot to sample their products, and the small-plate food menu and local craft beers and ciders mean that it offers something for everyone, even members of the family who aren’t keen on wine!

Must-try wine: Thirsty Elephant, a tri-grape blend of Niagara, Fredonia & Concord, is a cheeky number with notes of jam, cotton candy and fresh strawberries.

Penn Shore Vineyards

Penn Shore is the oldest, and one of the largest wineries in Pennsylvania. They specialize in European and American varietals and blends, and grow all their grapes on site, with hundreds of acres of vines surrounding the winery itself. They have an extremely attractive patio, as well as spacious tasting rooms, and during the summer the winery is transformed into an events venue with a program of summer concerts running every Saturday in July and August.

Must-try wine: The signature bestseller of Penn Shore, Lambruscano is a blend of Native American and French-American hybrid grapes, culminating in a wine that is semi-sweet, soft, and mellow.

Penn Shore Vineyards

Arundel Cellars and Brewing Company

Arundel Cellars and Brewing Company was Erie’s first combined winery and brewery, and is set in a fabulously renovated historic 19th century barn. The atmosphere is everything you could hope for, and the small menu of delicious dishes makes it a wonderful place to wile away a few more hours after your tasting. Don’t miss the live music performances held every Sunday afternoon!

Must-try wine: Winner of the award for Best Rose in the American Wine Society Commercial Competition, Our Reunion is a must for visitors to Arundel Cellars.

Mazza Winery

Founded in 1973, Mazza has spent the last four decades perfecting a blend of ancient winemaking traditions with the most innovative and up-to-date techniques and technology in viticulture. They work with a select group of growers in the area to ensure that only the best grapes go into their wines, and the quality and attention to detail shines through in their creations.

Must-try wine: Mazza Winery has been producing the unique and fascinating Ice Wine since 1984 and a visit here would not be complete without tasting this wonderful sweet offering.

Mazza Vineyards credit R Frank
Mazza Vineyards - credit R. Frank

Courtyard Winery

Right in the center of Lake Erie Wine Country, Courtyard Winery is a vine-to-table operation, covering every aspect of the production process from growing vines and harvesting grapes to creating stunning, carefully developed wines and bottling them on site. They are well-known for their small batch artisan wines, which have been regularly recognized at various local, regional, and national awards. Their Vineyard Veranda terrace is as pleasant a location for a wine tasting, or even just a relaxing evening out, as you could possibly imagine.

Must-try wine: Chambourcin, a barrel-aged dry red with upfront notes of raspberry leading to a well-balanced mid-palate of plums and cherries.


Arrowhead Winery

Arrowhead Winery is a really interesting spot for wine connoisseurs exploring Lake Erie. Italian owners Nick and Kathy have brought European know-how to the region, crafting award-winning wines from native, European, and hybrid grapes grown on their huge 250-acre plot since 1998. Arrowhead is also known for its astonishing gift shop, the largest winery gift shop in the region. You will struggle not to go home with a delightful souvenir of your trip!

Must-try wine: Franc ‘n Berry Wine, a sweet dessert Cabernet Franc ice wine blended with traditional Red Raspberry wine, the perfect after-dinner treat.

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Partner Spotlight

partner mazza vineyards

Mazza Vineyards and the South Shore Wine Company

Local wine is great for holiday entertaining, plus it makes a great gift! Stop by to try (and pick up) award-winning wines at Mazza Vineyards and the historic South Shore Wine Company, both located in North East, PA.

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When you have an opportunity to fly, give Erie a try - support your hometown airport!

Direct Daily Flights to Charlotte and Chicago.
Erie International Airport is serviced by American Airlines and United Airlines with daily flights to Charlotte and Chicago with connections across the country and around the world. Book your flight today at or

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The Cove Bay-Side Restaurant & Tavern

Join us today! The Cove Bay-Side Restaurant & Tavern is sure to give you an unforgettable and care-free dining experience. Enjoy a nautical atmosphere with a beautiful view of Presque Isle Bay.

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Erie Regional Chamber and Growth Partnership

The Erie Regional Chamber is leading Erie’s economic evolution through awareness, advocacy, and access to the people, education, and information integral to elevating regional success and economic growth. Become a member today and join us in championing a vibrant and sustainable regional economy.

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UPMC Hamot - See What Makes Us Different

UPMC Hamot is a 423-bed hospital in Erie, PA, offering a full complement of inpatient and outpatient services, and serves as a regional referral hub and Level II Trauma Center.

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Millcreek Mall

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The Cork 1794

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Dobbins Landing

Located on the southeast shore of Lake Erie, the Port of Erie has been promoting industrial, commercial, and recreational opportunities on the waters of Lake Erie since 1959.

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U Pick 6 Craft Beer Pubs & Restaurants

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Outdoor Dining at the Bayfront Grille

The Bayfront Grille Restaurant at the Sheraton Erie Bayfront Hotel is excited to announce that our Bayside Patio is open for Lunch and Dinner. Please check Open Table for reservations or contact the restaurant directly at 814-454-2005.

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Bring your family to Port Farms this summer, fall and winter! Port Farms is a fun-filled family destination located in Waterford, PA (30 minutes outside of Erie). The farm features many activities for all ages including a NEW Flower Festival, animal exhibits, slides, pedal carts, wagon rides, 8-acre corn maze, jumping pillows, pumpkin picking, Christmas tree picking, visiting with Santa, and much more. Options for wedding venues, corporate events, birthday parties, and school field trips are also available. To learn more, purchase tickets, or book an event visit

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John Russell Brewing Company Brew House & Restaurant

Local Craft Beer Brewery & Pub in Erie, PA! Featuring a large selection of craft beers, a wood-fired brick oven featuring fresh dough specialty pizzas & our open-view brewing environment makes for a unique experience! Reservations // Call 814.866.BEER (2337)
:: Full Menu, Wood-fired Brick Oven & Casual Pub Dining
:: Brewery & Craft Beer Pub
:: Craft Beers on Tap & Beer To-Go
:: Indoor & Outdoor Dining & Bar
:: Online Ordering & Takeout
:: Beer To-Go
:: Conveniently located of I-90 on Peach Street

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