Exploring our own “backyard”…

How many of us have ever taken the time to explore their local sites around them?  To just take the local back road and discover the little treasures your community has to offer?

I spent a delightful Sunday with my friends Steff and Ken literally exploring their backyard. (A 20 mile radius around their house in the Concord, NH area.) We went hopping from farm to farm enjoying the end of summer fruits and veggies, there was even apple picking at one of the farms. It was still a touch early for apples, but nothing beats a fresh picked apple right from the tree.

On our travels poking around the countryside we came upon a local winery. They closed at 5pm and we pulled in at 4:50pm. The owner of the winery, (the delightful and funny) Mr. Marshal Bishop greeted us with a friendly smile and a whole bunch of stories about his winery. First off, the winery building is home of Grace Metalious, the author who wrote the book Peyton Place and the property is known to be haunted. See, fun facts right off the bat.

A little slice of heaven in the New Hampshire country side.  Marshal grows all of his own grapes for his wines.
A little slice of heaven in the New Hampshire country side. Marshal grows all of his own grapes for his wines.

Marshall invited us in to his wonderfully, cozy winery and immediately asked us the kinds of wine we liked to drink. He then pulled 6 wines from his own vineyard and started explaining the flavors and grapes and offered a sample of each wine. Lets just say Marshall Bishop makes a kick ass Rose and a delicious chocolate wine.

This is Marshal's wine workshop.  For a very small winery he turns out a lot of bottles.  Two of his most popular wines are "Girls Night Out" a delicious red made with chocolate and "Blueberry Surprise", a very pleasant, slightly sweet red that was a delicious surprise indeed!
This is Marshal’s wine workshop. For a very small winery he turns out a lot of bottles. Two of his most popular wines are “Girls Night Out” a delicious red made with chocolate and “Blueberry Surprise”, a very pleasant, slightly sweet red that was a delicious surprise indeed!

This is a winery for the regular “guy”.  It’s approachable, friendly and Mr. Bishop is very knowledgeable about his own grapes and how he likes to produce his product. After all he has only started doing this about 4 years ago – something he should be very proud of.

Marshal's wife owns Alpacas!  This was a bonus at this little slice of heaven in the NH countryside.  During business hours you can visit these adorable animals and taste wine too. Bonus!
Marshal’s wife owns Alpacas! This was a bonus at this little slice of heaven in the NH countryside. During business hours you can visit these adorable animals and taste wine too. Bonus!

I encourage all of you to stop at the local farm stand down your street, or that artisans shop across town. You will find unique and exciting treasures. You will encounter new friends and discover what makes the place you call home a wonderful place to live. What an excellent way to end our day of discovery.

Following the country roads of NH, we ended up in Gilmanton - about 10 minutes from where Steff and Ken live.  This beautiful farmhouse was also once the home of the author Grace Metalious, who wrote the very controversial book Peyton Place. If you ever find yourself up in the Concord, NH area, do yourself a favor and visit this delightful farm and hospitable couple – it’s well worth the trip!
Following the country roads of NH, we ended up in Gilmanton – about 10 minutes from where Steff and Ken live. This beautiful farmhouse was also once the home of the author Grace Metalious, who wrote the very controversial book Peyton Place.
If you ever find yourself up in the Concord, NH area, do yourself a favor and visit this delightful farm and hospitable couple – it’s well worth the trip!

Please visit the Bishop’s website, they are also open on Friday nights for a 5 course sit down dinner and Sunday mornings for Brunch. (Both VERY affordable!)

Gilmanton Winery, 528 Meadow Road, Gilmanton NH, 603-267-8251.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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