rv destination and harvest hosts location
Spyglass Ridge Winery is Much More!
Hi, everybody. My name is Tom Webb. Spyglass Ridge Winery is our main business right now. We purchased the farm in 1995. Twenty years into the winery on November 8th will be starting our 21st season.
A whole other side of our business is our concert side. We started that 15 years ago now. We’ve had ZZ Top, Chicago, Pat Benetar, REO Speedwagon, Styx, and next year we have, let’s see, we’re talking with Cheryl Crow right now, Styx and REO wanna come back. We have booked Third Eye Blind, the band Live, Blues Travelers, Jeff Dunham, the puppet guy.
This structure here was the original barn on the property. We found the beams– all the beams and everything when this was made in the 1800s. It was carved in the beam, “The year of our Lord,” and then in Roman numerals, 1814. The building itself we can hold 120 people.
Now, this is where we make all the wine. All the fermentation tanks go from here all the way around. It’s climate-controlled. We keep the temperatures at 55 degrees down here all year long. Part of the reason that the walls here are uninsulated is unfortunately it costs me more money in the summer for air conditioning, but in the winter we get the natural cooling so it’ll drop it down below freezing in this room for cold stabilization of the wines that we’ve made this fall. So we naturally bulk age in the tanks and then we naturally allow our wines to cold stabilize, how they used to do it in Europe. We don’t use glycol-jacketed tanks. We don’t crash the wine. We don’t rush the wine. We allow our wines to bulk age for at least five months at a minimum.
This building up here is our new brewery and restaurant, Three Beards Brewing. It’s in partnership with three local guys who’ve made a big name for themselves in the brewing locally. They’ve been brewing together for ten years now. They started in high school, kinda like with me. They all grew up together, they kept brewing in college, and today they have 390-some of their own recipes that they’ve developed over the years.
Tom: My wife, Tammy, and I, we wanted to keep the theme of the property going, so this building, her and I designed it and then we went to a company in Mansfield, Pennsylvania, called Wood House, and Wood House makes timber-framed structures. They’re one of the few timber-framed builders that still does it completely old world. There’s not a single nut or bolt or metal plate in this entire wood structure.
And the big thing I have to show you, besides a great kitchen and a full menu of steaks, and fish, and everything else, is our brick oven. This brick oven here is made by a company in Baltimore. Two brothers from Italy came here to be able to patent it. It’s completely computer controlled, so you can do everything. But the greatest thing about this oven is the rotating base. When our pizza chef puts a pizza here, it comes out completed in 90 seconds. And besides just pizza, we’re gonna leverage this. We’re gonna be doing wings in here. We’re gonna be doing salmon on cedar plank. Part of the menu will actually be done in the brick oven.
Tom: All right, so here is– this is kind of the nuts and bolts of a brewery. Matt, Nate, and Levi make the beer. Right here, we have our stout aging in bourbon barrels. This brew house comes from a company in Verona, Italy, Inox Tecnica, and it’s probably a one-of-a-kind system here in the United States, because the greatest thing about this brew house is it’s literally fully automated, fully computer-controlled. So unlike most of the 15-barrel systems that are in the United States from other areas of the world, this takes one guy to do it. It’s self-cleaning, self-sterilizing, and we can literally make– of the same beer– we can make 30 barrels of beer in this system in an 8-hour brew cycle from start to finish. Right here is the brains of the system, so if we wanna open a valve, we can just touch this and open a valve. Start that motor.
Once they have a particular recipe, once the program is done and they tweak their recipe and they have it perfected, all they have to do is hit the recipe and it takes it from start to finish. They add the correct amount of grain, they follow the process, they add the hop addition. So it’s about being consistent, and that’s what we wanted. So when you come here and if you like our lager, or if you like our IPA, or if you like our cookie dough stout or our sour beers, every single one of ’em will be consistent. That’s the one hurdle that a lot of the boutique breweries have. You go there and you buy an IPA and it’s amazing the one time, and then the next time it’s like, “Ehh, it’s not the same.” So that’s the one thing that we wanted to get over.
Michelle: At this Harvest Host location, we met three sisters who were out camping for the very first time. They rented their camper from Outdoorsy. They shared a bit of their adventure with us.
Michelle: How did you come to rent a camper? Barbara Merrick: It was Jane’s idea. We all wanted to see New England in the peak. We went through Outdoorsy, which is a website for people who want to rent campers to people. It’s kind of Airbnb for campers. Michelle: How did you learn about Harvest Hosts? Barbara: I have a neighbor who has a camper. He said it’s wonderful, and so I joined and we started doing that.
We disconnected one day and drove across New Hampshire to Maine, to the coast, and we found a local restaurant that sold lobsters. We picked ’em out and we ate them on the beach. It was just magic.
Michelle: Beautiful sister memories, right? all: Yes. Michelle: Oh, that’s wonderful.
Are you thinking of getting a camper now? Barbara: We are, we are. It’s just such a wonderful way to travel because it’s so self-contained. Nancy: It’s safe. Barbara: And it’s safe.
Michelle: As we conclude this great visit to Spyglass Ridge Winery, we asked Tom how we get involved with Harvest Hosts.
Tom: Yeah, actually Harvest Hosts contacted me last year and asked if we wanted to be a member, and I kinda– I considered her first, but last year we had a bunch of concerts and I was still in all the construction of the brewery and everything, and I said, “Thanks for–you know, thanks for contacting us, but maybe next year.” Somebody called me and we had a discussion, and I’m like, “Wow, what a great idea,” you know? And it’s been awesome. Just like you guys, you know, we’ve met so many amazing people from all over, all over the country, and it’s actually been a joy. The not typical stuff that we offer, one is power. We also have 50-amp power down by the pond for the big boys, the real big–you know, the buses and everything, and then we have the 30-amp hookup, and then we even have a 110 hookup for the– you know, the smaller ones. At least they have power. We give free Wi-Fi in the brewery. They can go in and use the Wi-Fi. We give ’em the password or the password in the winery. And then starting next month, they’ll be able to get food, beer, wine, self-serves, cider. But we also, for all the other campers that are in teardrops or in small ones and everything, we have a beautiful shower that they can use in the brewery.
You can find us at spyglassridgewinery.com, on our website, and also of course on our Facebook page, Spyglass Ridge Winery. Three Beards Brewery has a website also, threebeardsbrewing.com, and then they also have their Facebook page.
You can order all our delicious wines right there at our website and we can ship to you, or even if you’re coming in as a Harvest Host, you can preorder your wines and we can have it all ready for you.
Michelle: We’re coming back. We wanna try that brick oven. Tom: Yeah. Michelle: And some more wine. Tom: Yes, you have to. It was a joy.