Nissley Vineyards, Their Estate, and Their Award-Winning Wines

In recent decades, Lancaster County has boomed in the number of vineyards and wineries. While no Nappa Valley, Lancaster offers the Lancaster County Winery, Thorn Hill Vineyards, Waltz Vineyards Estate Winery, The Vineyards at Grand ViewMoondancer Winery, Ciderhouse, and Taproom,  Stargazers Vineyards and Winery, Kogs Hill Winery, and Mount Hope Winery just to name a few. However, perhaps no other vineyard in Lancaster County has established and distinguished itself as the core of what it means to be a local vineyard as Nissley Vineyards.

I first met Jonas Nissley, a third generation vintner, at a wedding showcase and mixer at the Hertzog Homestead Event Venue. I’m not sure how he ended up there, but we began chatting, finding a common interest in business and preserving a legacy.  A year and a half later, my wife was looking at establishing a partnership with a local vineyard for the Hertzog Homestead Bed and Breakfast.  We often include wine as a part of the packages we offer to visitors who stay with us. After visiting a few wineries, she connected with Jonas Nissley. She discovered we knew each other and the partnership was born. Out of this partnership came our signature wine, the Hertzog Reserve Red. 

My connection to the Nissleys actually goes back further than Jonas. Jonas and I are actually distant cousins, probably 8th cousins or so. Back in the mid-1700s, Valentine Metzler married Anna Nissley from the Nissley family. Their son moved to the Hertzog Homestead, then the Metzlers married Buchs, Buchs married Hertzogs, and walla, here I am. Both our families are rooted deeply in Lancaster County.

Jonas Nissley shares a little bit about the Nissley Vineyard history, how in the 1970s his grandfather began making wines, and at the insistence of his children, turned a hobby into a business. From there the vineyard grew. 

Now they offer a variety of wines, all estate wines (grapes grown on the Nissley and surrounding properties), from red to rose, from white to fruit.  These wins are not just special because they are locally made; they have been noted by experts in the wine-making industry, having most recently won top awards at the Pennsylvania Farm Show and the Indy International Wine Competition.  Some of the wines that have won awards for Nissley are their 2016 Grapeful Red, the Naughty Marietta, Vignoles, Grapeful White, Apple, Candlelight, and Black Raspberry.  To see a full list of all their awards and award-winning wines, visit here. The real takeaway here is that Nissley Vineyards offers true quality wines that stand up under the scrutiny of experts.

If you love wine, then visiting Nissley Vineayrds needs to be a part of your Lancaster County experience. Nissley Vineyards offers a tasting of their wines and tours of their property for only $5.00. However, if you are here over a weekend in the summer, then you need to make it a priority to experience their Music in the Vineyard summer event series.  I personally have a fond memory of visiting the vineyard on a summer evening for an event with my wife and some friends.  As the music played from the band, we sprawled out our blankets and set out our picnic meal, enjoyed Nissley wine and watched fireflies sway the rhythms of the night.  As stated on their website: Music in the Vineyards 2018 is a series of open-air lawn concerts, to be held Saturday evenings during the summer on the spacious lawn of the Nissley Winery. Enjoy a romantic evening under the stars as the best of regional bands perform for your listening pleasure and for dancing on tree-shaded patios. Bring a picnic supper, good friends and lawn chairs or a blanket for all.

To find out more about Nissley Vineyards, please visit Tell Jonas I said hi.  

And remember, as your traveling, watch out for those road apples!


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