They’re back!

Published 9:27 am Thursday, June 20, 2019

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Chrisman Mill Winery reopens after 3 years with addition of distillery and restaurant

After three years, Chrisman Mill Winery is open again for business and celebrated with a ribbon cutting hosted by the Jessamine Chamber of Commerce Wednesday.
In business for over 20 years, the winery’s reopening brings with it a few surprises for old and new guests. For example, Chrisman Mill Winery is now home to the Hummingbird Ridge Distillery and restaurant Fuego which focuses on clean all-natural eating from locally sourced meat.
Open Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., the winery is located at 2385 Chrisman Mill Road. Wines offered include chocolate, chamboursin, honey mead and blackberry. The estate also focuses on Vidal Blanc, Chancellor and Norton varietals. Prices range from $13 to $20 per bottle of wine.
“We charge a small fee of $6 for a flight of three wines to taste, and $3 for a sample of our Blackstrap Rum,” owner Denise Nelson said. “We plan on adding Brandy and other spirits to our lineup as Hummingbird Ridge, our new distillery, gets up and running.”
Wines, Denise said, can be purchased by the tasting, glass, bottle, half case of full case.
“At one time in Jessamine county there were over 17 distilleries in this area,” Denise said. “Our distillery is the first one in this county since they all closed many years ago almost 50 years ago.”
Naming the distillery Hummingbird Ridge makes sense since visitors will be greeted by many hummingbirds upon coming out and experiencing what the newly opened winery, distillery and restaurant have to offer.
“My husband’s mother who recently passed loved hummingbirds,” Denise said.
In fact, Nelson said there was a distillery which used to sit open right down the road from Chrisman Mill many years ago. The distillery made apple brandy, and it is in that tradition which Denise said Hummingbird Ridge Distillery will also make its apple brandy.
“Brandy is just distilled wine, so it is a natural transition for us to make brandy since we were already making wine from local grapes,” Denise said. “We are also making rum that is made from organic black strap molasses- again all natural and organic is our focus.”
The new restaurant, Fuego, features an authentic outdoor Argentinian wood fire grill. Nelson said the restaurant will only be open seasonally and will most likely be closed November to March for the winter.
“Lunch is generally comprised of lighter fare such as street tacos, sliders, salads and the like,” Denise said. “Dinner is a price-fixed menu with appetizer, freshly-made bread, main course from our exciting wood-fired Argentine grill and desert, all prepared from fresh, organic, locally-sourced ingredients, including herbs and vegetables from our own garden.”
Denise runs the estate with the help of her husband Chris, who is a pediatric and adolescent associate. Chris maintains the vineyard and crafts the wine, while Denise, who holds a master’s in architecture, operates the tasting room and winery business side of operations.
“We look forward to providing a unique destination experience for all that visit us,” Denise said.
For more info, call 859-264-9463.

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