Posted by Lori on Jul 09, 2024
July 9, 2024 
 
This week our speaker was Loretta Todd who wears many hats at Debonne Vineyards one of which is Business Development. Loretta was able to announce that the Debonne family will be breaking ground on a new winery located in Harpersfield Township on the land of the old Deer's Leap Winery. They hope to break ground on August 1, 2024 and open in June of 2025. It will be a vintage industrial style winery called Corkscrew Tap House, which will have wine and beer on tap. 
 
Debonne Vineyards built their first winery in 1971 making wine from the sweet grapes they grew on the farm. She told us that it was very hard to make dry wine with those sweet grapes and sometimes the wines were not good. In 1973 they produced an off sweet wine called River Rouge and it is still part of their wine making. The Debonne family learned ways to begin growing grapes, other than sweet grapes, as time went on. Debonne Vineyards are the largest estate vineyard in Ohio with 170 acres of vines and 19 varieties of grapes. 
 
Loretta said that several wineries, Debonne, Cask 307, Grand River Cellars and South River Winery team up to produce their wines. They work together to harvest the grapes and produce the wine. Loretta said there are about 100 employees and they are all hands on deck during harvest time. They are looking forward to a stellar year of harvesting. They have more fruit then they've ever seen on the vines right now and about a month to a month and half ahead of time. They hope that the abundance also produces great grapes. 
 
Loretta also said that the almost 30 wineries in the area are all part of the Grand River Valley which is a great area for growing grapes. She gave out bottle toppers with the Grand River Valley logo to all members. 
 
Loretta Todd from Debonne Vineyards. 
 
 
July 16, 2024 our meeting will be off site.  We will meet for the Salvation Army Christmas in July Annual Luncheon at the Painesville Township Park.