The Vineyard Villa Milagro, a “place of miracles,” is absolutely breathtaking: a sprawling farm that includes one of the oldest ceramic silo’s in New Jersey; a magnificent white farmhouse with green accents; rows of beautiful grape vines and a tiny tasting room with no chairs and four wines set up to sample. It’s a genuine, non-commercialized vineyard. Beautiful.
Villa Milagro, was born when Audrey, a former Columbia University professor and her husband Steve, a real estate financing guru, decided to look for farming property on which to retire. They looked at hundreds of properties and finally found the perfect place to start a vineyard: in Finesville, NJ. With 10 varieties of grapes, Audrey and Steve Gambino blend European-style wines that are fun and inspiring. What impressed me the most is their organic and sustainable farming practices. Although they are not certified organic, they do grow grapes without pesticides and prefer to pick weeds instead of spraying them. Steve created a mower-edge flamer that aids in this task and it is said to “shoot flames into the night sky.”
While visiting, I had the pleasure of tasting four different wines: Gracias, the “Thanksgiving wine,” Rosita, the “summer wine,” Incendio, the “stinky cheese wine” and the Casi Dulce, the “tomato wine.” My pick (surprisingly) is the Rosita wine: a “slightly sweet wine with fruity, perfumed notes. It is light, fresh, with a clean flavor, perfect for summer days.” It might not be summer, but I still like it!
Wine tasting is an intensely personal experience. You and your nose, taste buds and palate are unique and so is the way that you label, categorize and remember smells and tastes. Putting your senses to work while listening to the unique story behind the wine, straight out of the mouth of the wine-maker herself, makes it truly memorable. As I tasted Villa Milagro’s wines, Audrey shared her story about how they discovered Finesville and stumbled into growing grapes and creating wines. Knowing the story behind your wine really adds a nice dimension to each sip and will provide you with a narrative to tell guests at your next party.
So where is Finesville? It’s only 40 minutes from me in Hunterdon County! Finesville is located within the Pohatcong Township in Warren County, NJ. Where is that exactly? Do a Google search and you will find that there are no hotels, restaurants, nightlife or travel suggestions for Finesville. It’s really that small… and that’s what makes it fun and inspiring! So pack a picnic and take a Sunday drive out Route 78 to Villa Milagro. Enjoy the beautiful scenery, meander along the Delaware River and taste some New Jersey wine with a sustainable, personalized touch!
Villa Milagro is located at:
33 Warren Glen Road
Finesville, NJ 08865
*I was not compensated in anyway for this post. *