Visit Sinking Valley Winery
When most people think of Kentucky alcohol, they think of bourbon, but Kentucky wine has a 200-year history. The owners of Sinking Valley Winery uphold that tradition.
Co-owner Amy Burton knocked on her tasting room’s wooden bar as she said that business for the family was doing well. The economy’s downturn hasn’t effected Zane and Amy Burton, and that’s thanks to both the locals, who come in steadily year-round, and tourists, whose summer-month visits are increasing. “Word of mouth is helping us a lot,” Amy Burton said.
Sinking Valley Winery and Vineyard can be found in Plato, Kentucky, within Pulaski County. It’s located on the Plato-Vanhook Road, just off of Highway 461.
One thing that could force a set-back, though, is the weather. Kentucky’s climate usually makes for good grape-growing, but Burton said the last few years have been rough on the vines. A late frost in 2007 and the 2008 drought have set the vineyard back, but Burton said that so far the winery has been able to buy grapes and other fruit from other Kentucky farmers to supplement their own crops.
Beat the Tax Man
The winery’s events this year include a “Beat the Tax” sale, to be held March 31. Kentucky’s government recently passed a law that will add the commonwealth’s 6% sales tax to be added on all alcohol sold at retail. The tax will be applied starting April 1, hence the winery’s sales event. Amy Burton said the winery’s hours will be extended that day.
The Wine List
The Burton’s offer a wide variety to choose from: sweet and dry wines, red and white wines, and wines made from any number of fruit, such as blackberry, apple, and strawberry, though supplies may vary throughout the year. The newest offering, Prohibition Repeal Red, was inspired by, as one can guess, the celebration of the end of Prohibition. Bottles feature three different designs, one of which features Prohibitionist and Kentucky native Carrie Nation, hatchet and bible in hand.
All wines are fermented and bottled on-site. Their tasting room is right across the road, where visitors are offered free samples in a refurbished Plato post office that operated from 1945 to 1953. While behind the bar, Amy Burton can steer patrons to what they are looking for. For example, she tells customers that the Prohibition Repeal Red is a wine that goes with food, while the Plato Nouveau is the perfect wine for sipping while sitting outside on the patio, enjoying the sunshine.
Prices vary from $9 to $16 per bottle. There is a 10% discount for buying by the case of 12, and the cases can be of different wines. Besides sampling wine, visitors to the tasting room can browse through a gift shop filled with items such as wine accessories and geodes found locally.
The tasting room is open Monday through Saturday from noon until 6 p.m. For more information, please visit the Sinking Valley Winery’s website here.