When talking about wine, people often think about France, Chile, Spain, or other countries that are famous wine producers. However, did you know that vineyards exist all across the United States? Sleepy Creek Vineyards, for example, is a tranquil and idyllic vineyard in Illinois that produce a delicious variety of wines.
About Sleepy Creek Vineyards
The story of Sleepy Creek Vineyards began with a couple that wanted to get out of their comfort zone and start something new. Joe and Dawn Taylor began to build this business in 2002 and, after years of hard work, Sleepy Creek Vineyards was finally established in 2007. Today this winery has 10 acres (4 hectares) of vineyards and is doing a great job at producing local wine.
Wine production at Sleepy Creek Vineyards
Sleepy Creek Vineyards produces their own wine and has a variety of options for different wine lovers out there. They offer dry, semi-dry, and sweet wine, both for white and red wine. Moreover, the names of wines at Sleepy Creek Vineyards are super interesting and unique. Some examples are Bashful Ewe, Sour Puss, Scapegoat, and Three Amigos. Sleepy Creek Vineyard also makes wine slushies and offers delicious sodas, such as coconut, lemon, and root beer. Also, let’s not forget to mention the famous jalapeño wine that goes well with the bloody mary mix!
For the wine tasting experience, visitors can taste 3 wines of their choice for free or 6 wines for 3 USD. Once you find a wine that you like, you can purchase a bottle, which is approximately 13 to 20 USD, or other beverages of your choice. Sleepy Creek Vineyards does not offer food, but you are welcome to bring your own food and enjoy it outdoors or indoors.
What to do at Sleepy Creek Vineyard
Sleepy Creek Vineyards is not just a place for wine tasting. The vineyards also host other activities, such as the Purple Finger Club. Each year the vineyard recruits volunteers, known as the Purple Finger Club, for the harvest season; people can sign up and get the special experience of harvesting grapes along with special discounts. Other events at Sleepy Creek Vineyards include annual music and art festivals, such as The Salt Fork River Art & Music Festival.
Moreover, Sleepy Creek Vineyards also offers accommodation for travelers who want to stay and relax for a night or two. This is something that they call bed & wine, instead of bed & breakfast. This bed and wine is a 1,000-square-foot (93-square-meter) retreat that is located right above the winery. Travelers are able to stay in a comfortable room that is super spacious and can accommodate up to 10 people, perfect for business travel, meetings, getaways with friends, small weddings, anniversaries, workations, etc. Since it is for large groups, the pricing starts at around 150 USD and it includes a fully equipped kitchen, flat-screen TV, and heating.
How to get there
Sleepy Creek Vineyard is a few hours’ drive from Chicago and 30 minutes away from Champaign-Urbana. Like other places throughout the United States, getting to Sleepy Creek Vineyard would require a car since there are neither shuttles nor public transportation that go there. Travelers are recommended to use instructions from the website instead of using Google Maps and other software to find their way, since people tend to get lost when following technologies. Surrounding the area are a few parks and rivers where travelers can enjoy activities such as canoeing, kayaking, and tubing. So, if you are staying at the vineyard, be sure to add these activities onto your itinerary for extra fun!
Taste away at Sleepy Creek Vineyards, Illinois
Illinois may not be famous for wine, but that does not mean that you should not give the local vineyards some credit. So, why not head to Sleepy Creek Vineyards? They produce delicious wine, offer different kinds of activities, and even have their own bed and wine accommodation. It is truly more than just wine tasting!
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