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  • Delayne Martin

Slanted Window Wines

While traveling to the western part of North Carolina we stopped in for our first visit to Slanted Window Wines. We got a lot more than we bargained for. We not only tried their amazing wines, but we tasted great food and enjoyed the music of Nicole Marie Quinn . There is something for everyone here. They also serve beer and bourbon.

Sometimes good things come from bad situations. Having spent their younger years in western North Carolina, Dion and Cathy Sena decided to make the area their summer home. Upon arriving they discovered so much hurricane damage they would have to restore the family farmhouse, which dates back to 1878. The Senas discovered a slanted window that had been covered with siding by Dion’s mother. Peering through the window there is a view of the Senamore Vineyard which is nestled in the Appalachian Mountains in Franklin, North Carolina. The window reminds us that everyone brings a perspective with them. We can all learn from each other, perhaps over a glass of wine. This is the start of their wine-making journey. Dion and Cathy always wanted to make wine and open a tasting room for people to enjoy. After researching grape varieties that grow well in western North Carolina and visiting with other vintners they settled on what vinifera they would grow.

In 2008 they had the plan, but many obstacles got in their way. Their determination and tenacity would prevail. Next came hiring a winemaker and vigneron, their nephew. A vigneron is someone who grows grapes and makes wine. 2019 saw their first vintage bottled. Dion and Cathy make the farmhouse their home. They do offer vineyard tours by reservation. Their goal was to open a place where people could come, relax, and taste their wine. They bought an old filling station and converted it into a unique tasting room. They have updated the interior without losing the nostalgia of the filling station. Weldon Mills Distillery produces much of the bourbon whiskey they carry. What is wine without food? You won’t find that out here. They offer charcuterie boards, salads, flatbreads, and a few sweet items to accompany your wine choices. Slanted Window Wines is the only winery to bottle wine in Macon County.

We arrived at the tasting room in the afternoon and the place was buzzing with people. It was a gorgeous day and you could sit inside or out. We each ordered a separate tasting so we could enjoy all the wines. Several wines stood out for us. Jam Sesh, their petit manseng, had flavors of stone and tropical fruit. The Rose Saignee is their rose made with Sangiovese. It was very unexpected for a rose; bold yet floral. We also enjoyed the Mambo Chambo, their single varietal Chambourcin. It was well-balanced with light spicy notes on the finish. As an added treat we got to taste the Pyment, their dessert wine. One thing I will never get tired of is when you are tasting wine there will be someone, who you have never met who asks you what you are drinking and the next thing you know they have pulled up a chair at your table. We ordered a bottle of the Tellico Tuscan Blend and a fig tart. While we enjoyed the wine and food Nicole Marie Quinn started playing. We also met Dion and his daughter, Chelsea. Dion had the entire tasting room engaged in a discussion of growing grapes and making wine. I would like to thank Michaella, their marketing manager, for her assistance and for supplying some great photos.

If you are headed to the North Carolina mountains to see the foliage this fall we recommend stopping by to taste amazing wine and meet some amazing people. Check out their website for updated event information. They offer live music on most weekends.

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Sep 25, 2023

It was great to meet you guys! We'll be back in North Carolina over Thanksgiving weekend. We're staying in Banner Elk.

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