Wine Tasting at Crush Fest

Where: Cleveland, Georgia

Trip Date: 9/2/17

I know that I covered some of Cleveland very recently, but this week is a little different. Most of my posts have been history based, but by sheer happenstance I discovered that a local vineyard was hosting Crush Fest this past week, and I could not pass up the opportunity for a little local culture (and day-drinking at noon on a Saturday).


Crush Fest

Yonah Mountain Vineyards is a local winery nestled in the shadow of Yonah Mountain on a beautiful 200-acre plot of land. The family owned winery has hosted Crush Fest since 2010, and it has since become sort of a new local tradition.

Yonah Mountain Vineyards

Yonah Mountain Vineyards.

The event draws in around 5000 people annually from all over Georgia, and offers a variety of food trucks, vendors and artists from around North Georgia, live musical performances, and—of course—wine tasting.


Some of the best tater tots I have ever eaten.

But the main event was certainly the crushing. Two large containers were set up and filled with fresh grapes picked from the surrounding vineyards, and all of the visitors were welcomed to remove their shoes, jump in, and start stomping. After picking the grapes, crushing is the next step in the winemaking process before fermentation. This event is a great way for the average person to experience (and get involved in) the process.

Grape Crushing

A group of festival attendees crushing grapes.

All in all I had a wonderful Saturday afternoon sampling wines and enjoying the scenery. Crush Fest is held the Saturday of Labor Day weekend every year, and I will definitely have to make an effort to go again next year.

Vineyard at Crush Fest

A view of the vineyard under Yonah Mountain.


Fresh grapes growing in the vineyards.

By | 2017-09-07T20:45:11+00:00 September 8th, 2017|Event, Georgia|5 Comments

About the Author:

James is an artist and illustrator currently working in Georgia.


  1. Morton McInvale September 8, 2017 at 1:14 pm - Reply

    Better than a taste of wine.

  2. Linda Clarke September 8, 2017 at 2:17 pm - Reply

    It sounds like a lot of fun for everyone. I don’t drink, but I could have enjoyed those tater tots, that’s for sure.

    As always, your paintings are incredible.

    • James McInvale September 8, 2017 at 2:44 pm - Reply

      Thank you Linda! There was a lot of neat stuff there, something for everyone. Even my dad enjoyed it and he doesn’t like wine. And yes, the food was amazing, I’ll have to go again next year just for that.

  3. carol craig September 9, 2017 at 3:15 pm - Reply

    Enjoyed your illustrations and info, James. Would be a nice place to visit. Maybe next yesr we should plan for our teachers to go there.

    • James McInvale September 10, 2017 at 10:50 pm - Reply

      Thank you!

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