Henderson County – Cheers Trail!

Wine. Cider. Mead. Beer. They’re all here, on the Hendersonville Cheers! Trail.

The Cheers! Trail is the only trail in North Carolina showcasing four different types of craft beverages. Another plus is its location – the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains in and around Hendersonville.

Choose from a selection of 16 different tasting experiences along the trail. This includes nine breweries (Blue Ghost, Dry Falls, Guidon, Mills River, Sanctuary, Sideways Farm, Sierra Nevada, Southern Appalachian and Triskelion), three wineries (Burntshirt, Point Lookout and Saint Paul), two hard cideries (Appalachian Ridge and Bold Rock) and one meadery (World’s Edge at Point Lookout Vineyards).

Saint Paul wines and Appalachian Ridge ciders can also be sampled at Saint Paul’s tasting room in Flat Rock.

Each segment of the trail features superlative experiences:

CIDER – Henderson County is North Carolina’s largest apple-producing county and seventh largest nationally. Local orchards exclusively supply fresh apples to Appalachian Ridge and Bold Rock cideries. Appalachian Ridge’s tasting room is located in an orchard and its ciders are hand-crafted in European style, while Bold Rock is the largest craft cider producer in the United States.

BEER – Sierra Nevada’s eco-friendly, state-of-the-art facility is one of the largest craft breweries in the nation and features everything from indoor and outdoor dining to daily tours to a beer garden amphitheater. Sideways Farm & Brewery is located on a working farm and highlights the agricultural side of beer, while Southern Appalachian, Triskelion and Guidon are all within walking distance in the revitalized Seventh Avenue District.

WINE – Hendersonville’s high-elevation valley provides an ideal climate for growing European vinifera and French-American hybrid grapes amidst a mountain backdrop. Saint Paul, located on family land that goes back nine generations, was Hendersonville’s first winery. Close by is Burntshirt, which has won the NC Winegrower of the Year award and offers an apple wine made from local apples. Point Lookout is situated on top of Point Lookout Mountain with sweeping views of the Blue Ridge.

MEAD – Mead is a form of wine made from honey. It was popular in Colonial times and is making a resurgence in the southern Appalachians. World’s Edge Meadery at Point Lookout Vineyards offers a broad selection of meads in addition Point Lookout wines.

Appalachian Ridge Artisan Ciders
Enjoy European style ciders in a renovated 1940s farmhouse in the midst of an orchard. The cider is made from traditional Henderson County apples, as well as from apple trees that have been transplanted from the Normandy region of France. Appalachian Ridge also makes pommeau, a blend of cider and apple brandy. 731 Chestnut Gap Road, Hendesonville, NC  828-699-7507

Blue Ghost Brewing Company
Drawing its name from the elusive blue ghost firefly native to WNC, the brewery is located just minutes from Asheville Regional Airport. The Hungry Ghost food truck serves pub-style fare that complements the popular Blue Ghost IPA, also available in grapefruit and mango versions, and the house-made root beer. 125 Underwood Road, Fletcher, NC  828-376-0159

Bold Rock Hard Cider
The nation’s largest craft cidery produces a regular line of hard ciders, as well as several seasonal offerings. The state-of-the-art tasting room includes windows overlooking the production facility, a permanent food truck, cider garden and indoor and outdoor stages for regular live music. 72 School House Road, Mills River, NC  828-595-9940

Burntshirt Vineyards
Produces a large selection of wines that have captured many national and international awards. Wines are made from 100% estate grown grapes at two Burntshirt vineyards, which are among the highest elevation vineyards on the East Coast. The tasting room is popular with indoor and outdoor seating, live music. Be sure to try the apple wine. 2695 Sugarloaf Road, Hendersonville, NC  828-685-2402