A toast to Maine’s first vineyard at Cellardoor Winery

With the rolling green hills of mid-coast Maine as its backdrop, the setting of Cellardoor Winery looks like it belongs to Virginia’s popular Piedmont region. Don’t be mistaken though, this winery is 100% Maine and very proud of it. Owner Bettina Doulton purchased the property in 2007 and transformed a 1790s farmhouse into the winery and tasting room with a rustic luxe touch in order to keep the character of the original building. Maine’s rocky soil and harsh winters have not usually been kind to grape vines in the past but with ingenuity, a classic New England work ethic, and I suspect a dash of Maine stubbornness (coming from a long line of Mainers myself I can say that) the winery had a successful harvest in 2012 that will be used in making future vintages.

Cellardoor Winery, a taste of Maine's first vineyard www.casualtravelist.com Cellardoor Winery, a taste of Maine's first vineyard www.casualtravelist.com


Of course in order to thoroughly review this winery I had to sample some of their offerings, so I bellied up to the wine barrel bar to peruse their selections.With over 30 offering on pour it was hard to narrow down my tasting selections so I went with a mix of personal favorites and regional specialties.Visiting Maine in the summer there was definitely going to be some lobster in our near future and a bright, citrusy white was in order. I found this in a glass of Perfect Stranger, an easy drinking cayuga varietal perfect for sipping on a summer afternoon.

I’m a Cabernet girl at heart so I was immediately drawn to the Prince Valiant, a blend of Cabernets Savignon and franc and with some Merlot and malbec added in for good measure. This is truly a prince among the estate’s wines. Whatever you’re looking for in a red wine you’ll find here; a bold, fruity start, a little tannic(but not too much) and a spicy finish that will leave you thinking about your next sip. Oh, and a hint of blackberry too. Because all good reds have a hint of blackberry, don’t you think?

The standout of the day for me was their C’est de l’Or, a port style maple syrup infused brandy. Maple syrup. Brandy. Need I say more?
Tasting at Cellardoor Winery, Maine's first vineyard  www.casualtravelist.comTasting at Cellardoor Winery, Maine's first vineyard  www.casualtravelist.com

Now if you know what you like you can buy a glass and a cheese plate then head out to the deck and enjoy one of the prettiest vineyard views on the East Coast. Situated a few miles from Maine’s famous rocky coastline and the postcard worthy town of Camden, the pastoral hills dotted with lakes and ponds that Cellardoor Winery calls home may be one of the most scenic places I’ve had the pleasure of savoring a sip. After my tasting  I enjoyed meandering through the vineyards contemplating where to find the best lobster roll. With views like this its easy to see why owner Bettina Doulton left behind the rat race of life as a financial analyst in Boston for something this idyllic.Cellardoor Winery, Maine's first vineyard  www.casualtravelist.com Tasting at Cellardoor Winery, Maine's first vineyard  www.casualtravelist.com CellarDoor Winery www.casualtravelist.comTasting at Cellardoor Winery, Maine's first vineyard  www.casualtravelist.com

Ready to sample the fruits of Cellardoor Winery yourself? Be sure to checkout their website for directions, hours and a list of events.



69 Comments on “A toast to Maine’s first vineyard at Cellardoor Winery

    • Wineries are great fun, they often have free or low cost tastings too.

    • There are few place that aren’t good when you have wine in hand 😉

    • I wouldn’t say its a wine region just yet but there are plenty of other reasons to visit Maine.

  1. Wineries are fab places aren’t they!? My two favorite things in life…wine and cheese combined with a great view! Wish there were more beautiful wineries near me!

  2. I’ve only been to one winery that was in Washington and this one looks beautiful as well! I’m not surprised to hear Maine has a great winery and I bet it’d make for a great stop on a road trip through there.

  3. I have yet to travel in Maine, but it is high on my list of places to visit when I am back in the States. Your photos are beautiful!

    • Thanks! Maine surprised me, there’s a lot of great stuff happening up there.

  4. You are killing me (in a good way) with your Maine posts! “Because all good reds have a hint of blackberry”, yes, yes and yes. Loved the names for the wines. Mostly the wines in Portugal will have the family name, or a mix of family name and region name, but I enjoy the innovation.
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    • I enjoyed Maine a lot more than I expected to, its a very genuine place with a lot to offer.

    • You should definitely make your way to Maine sometime, nature, quaint towns and good food abound.

  5. Ooh I have only ever really visited Portland and Goram in Maine, looks like I’ll be adding this vineyard to the list next time I cross the pond!

    • Mid-coast Maine is very picturesque and very different from Portland. Its what you imagine when you think of Maine.

    • Its amazing the places people plant vines, the lengths we go to for good wine!

  6. This looks amazing! Coming from Napa we love our wine, I’m a Cab girl too. THat brandy looks great though! Will definitely add this to our list of places to visit.

  7. This looks so lovely – an experience right up my alley. With 30 blends to choose from, I am with you – choose the regional specialty every time! 🙂

  8. Yum! Delicious sounding wines in a beautiful setting! I love the interior of that winery! That barrels under the table are awesome!

  9. I’ve been dreaming of Maine since childhood. Still haven’t made it there but now with the promise of wine, I might be getting there sooner rather than later 🙂 Cellardoor and the grounds look beautiful!

  10. Scenic indeed! I remember thinking of Austria when I saw this winery on your FB page. I imagined Maine would be completely different. I don’t know why! I really would love to try Prince Valiant and the maple-syrup flavoured brandy… sounds yummy!

    • I didn’t expect Maine to look like this either ( I also agrre, it does look a bit like Austria!).

  11. I’ve been to Maine before and loved it! The wine tasting location looks stunning, I would definitely do it!

  12. Wow, this looks like such a beautiful place! Great photos! I have never been to a vineyard yet, but would love to visit one! I love Cabernets too, of course with a hint of blackberry…it`s a must :).

  13. Pingback: Kayaks and wine on Virginia's Eastern Shore - Casual Travelist

    • Jennifer- I absolutely loved Maine and I was quite surprised to see a handful of wineries while I was there. I highly suggest you visit the mid coast and Acadia areas- just gorgeous.

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