Relax, Recover, Recharge, On The Ridgeline Craft Beverage Trail

Ridgeline Craft Beverage Trail

I  hope you had a chance to read part one of our story on the
Ridgeline Craft Beverage Trail. This is a two-day journey; and this month we highlight day two. If you missed day one, go to to catch up. 

Cavendish Brewing Company

On day two of your craft beverage journey along the Ridgeline Craft Beverage Trail, please make a point to enjoy a good hearty breakfast! By the time you eat, pick up the crew, and leave the hotel, Cavendish Brewing Company in Gastonia should be opening for your tasting pleasure. Located in an old car dealership, the tasting room takes over the entire showroom floor. The taps and the bar are tucked off to the side, leaving the rest of the space a vast social area. Cavendish Brewing Company is a social hub for Gastonia, and it’s visitors. The taproom encourages socializing. Board games card games and the room’s inviting layout to encourage people to strike up a conversation with fellow craft beverage enthusiasts. 

The old service facility from the dealership is now the main production facility for the Cavendish Brewing Company. The beers brewed at Cavendish are quite simply Old World beers. Brewing classic rare varieties of beers with modern technology. And apparently they are doing an outstanding job of it. Each time we stop in, more metals are hanging on the wall above the taps. Awards from regional and national brewing competitions. 

Now old-world beer does not mean a bland beer. At the time of this writing, the hot new release is a Hot Chocolate Raspberry Dragonbane Oatmeal Stout. Ok, so it’s not all old world beers. 

Cavendish is known for its festivals and weekly events. and themed gatherings. I found that with Cavendish being so actively hosting events, the only way to keep up is to hit them up on their Facebook page. 

Now I know you just had breakfast, but you might want to consider checking out some of the delights from the kitchen. From Gastonia, you’re going to take a little drive out in the country, and you certainly don’t want to have any hunger pains or be “hangry” when you arrive at your next stop.

The next section of trail sends us to Kings Mountain, North Carolina, to Veronét Vineyards & Winery. After a 20 minute drive, you will be surrounded by beautiful rolling hills with spectacular views of Crowder’s Mountain. Six acres of these hills are dedicated to growing the estate vines, including cabernet franc, viognier, chambourcin, and traminette varietals. 

Veronét Vineyards & Winery

The new spacious tasting room features live music and food trucks on the weekends and plenty of room indoors and out to spread out and just relax. Check on line or call ahead; regulations and rules for tasting rooms very dynamic these days. Currently, Veronét Vineyards & Winery are doing tastings by reservation only.

Next, you’re off to a family farm over 100 years old located in Lawndale, NC. Nestled in the foothills with spectacular views all around, Baker Buffalo Creek Vineyard and Winery is featured as the “Hillshire Farm” location in the commercials you see on TV. The only thing you’ll find more charming than the location of Baker Buffalo Creek Vineyards and winery will be the two owners Charles and Anne. The land has been in the family for over 100 years. It was a dairy farm and now grows some of the finest grapes in North Carolina. The first vines were planted back in 2003. The harvest was so successful since then eight different grape varietals, including red muscadine, chardonnay, scuppernong, cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc, riesling, and traminette. have been planted. Charles did not set out to make a great North Carolina wine. He set out to make great wine. I would say he was successful! The evidence is in his bold reds, and his crisp, dry whites. Charles even started a barrel-aging program a few years ago, and the results have been fantastic.

Baker Buffalo Creek Vineyard and Winery

I’m sure now after spending the afternoon in the beautiful countryside you are ready to get back to the city and do one last tasting and enjoy a great dinner. Newgrass Brewing Company in Shelby is your final stop. Newgrass is in the heart of uptown Shelby. The tasting room and production facility were initially built in 1909. The building has been a department store and a mill. Now it’s a beautiful tasting room and restaurant. The beers are innovative and award-winning. Newgrass has a very hop forward attitude and their IPAs have won several medals.

Newgrass Brewing Company

The kitchen features many NC farm to fork items. The kitchen is also award-winning. You’ll be amazed at the items on the menu including local grass-fed beef, house made pimento cheese, creamy cheeses from Guernsey Girl Creamery, and North Carolina swordfish and local trout. From the mountains to the coast you can eat some of the best dishes North Carolina has to offer, right here in Uptown Shelby!

Now you have finally completed the Ridgeline craft beverage Trail. It took two days but wasn’t it worth it? Now for the final question, do you really want to go home? 

Gaston County offers visitors a variety of attractions to enhance your trip including museums, botanical gardens, extreme sports, hiking, dining and entertainment parks, art and history and more.