Summer mode has officially been activated and there is nothing better than a road trip to Grey County to kick off a season of fun. Picture yourself patio-side at one of the many breweries, wineries, and cideries sipping on something delicious, locally made and ice cold. Does that not sound like perfection? You may need more than one day to enjoy them all as there are many options sprinkled throughout the county from Neustadt and Hanover, to Owen Sound and Meaford, to Clarksburg and The Blue Mountains. Not a bad problem to have!
As Grey County locals, we are all about building an impeccable itinerary equipped with good food, fresh dips and sips and a nice spot to rest your eyes for the night. Luckily for you, we know a few spots to get you feeling inspired and excited to plan your next adventure.
Check out these breweries, wineries + cideries for future summer wanderings:
Meaford’s first brewery is worth the visit. From the road you’ll see a green barn but as you inch closer, you’ll come to realize it’s home to Still Fields – an all-oak brewery offering unique, funky and small-crafted beers. Enjoy a cold one on their newly decked out patio or tour up to the hop field and sip amidst the flowing grass. They will be having food vendors pop-up on weekends so make sure to follow along on their social media channels to stay in the know.
This micro cidery and fermentory located on the outskirts of Meaford offers small batched ciders that are sure to make your tastebuds happy. Celebrating all things local, Windswept uses a low intervention method using close-to-home fruit which produces a more natural sip. Catch them on-site for a tasting (check online for hours) or schedule directly for a bottle pick-up.
Off the beaten path, Grey & Gold is a Grey County gem. They are an outdoor cidery and bottle shop that pours fermented, low-intervention, natural and conversation worthy ciders. David and Kim are almost always on-site pouring tastings and connecting with their customers. It’s a true farm to glass experience and if you’re looking for a quaint and slow paced pitstop – this is it!
Lokal Digs personal faves: Modern Girl + Ailish and the cheese + charcuterie cup provided by The Cheese Gallery in Thornbury.
Perched on the hills of the Beaver Valley, The Roost offers delightful cold climate wines with a side of cheese, charcuterie and a stunning view. Choose from an air-conditioned tasting room or a cozy spot on their spacious patio. Either way, you’ll feel right at home and happy you made a point to visit.
New release: 2021 Sparkling Siegerrebe - Sekt In a Bottle – a very aromatic sparkling wine with a tropical nose. Pairs well with local sunsets.
If you happen to find yourself in the historic village of Neustadt, pop in to the brewery to enjoy the historic atmosphere and one of their brews. They’ve also recently renovated their patio and offer a selection of yummy snacks including a cheese board and soft pretzels. This pitstop will have you visiting for the beer, the building and the history. Triple awesome.
If you’re into super light and flaky fish and chips and/or stringy and piping hot mozzarella sticks, Noah's Inn Fish & Chips might be your new spot. It’s worth noting, this restaurant isn’t just for fish lovers! They offer souvlaki, burgers, deep fried pickles and candy with the bill. In my book, any restaurant that gives candy with the bill automatically wins.
Grey County is bursting with other local beer, wine and cider producers. Here are some other spots to check out:
- Mudtown Station
- Coffin Ridge Boutique Winery
- Georgian Hills Vineyards
- Thornbury Craft Cider and Brewhouse
- Northwind’s Brewhouse at Blue
- Maclean’s Ales
- Spy Cider House and Distillery
As always, it’s best to plan ahead. This means making reservations, booking accommodations, scouting parking, assigning a designated driver and doing your research. This eliminates the surprises and allows you to have a relaxing trip.
Rest your eyes at Penny’s – a reimagined boutique motel in Thornbury, Ontario. Minutes away from Georgian Bay and the downtown core, Penny’s is the ideal landing spot for your Grey County staycation or day-trip. Not only are the rooms beautifully curated from top to bottom but the entire venue takes into account all of the things a ‘staycationer’ loves: coffee, snacks, lawn games, communal bikes and fire pits for courtyard chats. It’s straight up dreamy.
Don't forget about the Ontario Staycation Tax Credit – Level up your day trip and spend a night or two with the help of the OSTC. You can claim 20% of your accommodation expenses during year-end taxes! Yes please.
PS. Mid-week visits are where it’s at! Less lines, more availability + the same amount of fun. Happy sipping!
Please drink responsibly, know your limits and do not drink and drive.
Guest Writer: Stef Richardson
I consider myself a small town gal (raised here in Grey County) with an interest in all things food, culture, community & people. Known for my clogging, blogging and vlogging, my work seeks to showcase the love and appreciation I have for all that is discoverable in Ontario. There is something equally invigorating and addictive about creating relationships with business owners across the region and getting a behind-the-scenes tour of all that they're passionate about. I'm all about digging lokal and sharing my discoveries with the adventurous + foodies at heart. Follow along @lokaldigs