Visitors Guide to the
Route du Vin

Sainte Genevieve County, Missouri

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Missouri was once heavily involved in the winemaking business with approximately 100 wineries in Missouri were producing two million gallons of wine each year at the turn of the 20th century. The onset of the Prohibition era began with the passage of the 18th Amendment in 1919 and dealt a severe blow to Missouri's winemaking industry. The wineries of Sainte Genevieve County are a part of a resurgence of vintners that began in the 1980s.

The Route du Vin of Sainte Genevieve County is a driving tour that begins in Sainte Genevieve and then travels in a loop through the forested hills and farmland southeast of this historic town. Driving time is about an hour not counting any stop over time.

The first stop on the tour is the Sainte Genevieve Winery, which is located at 245 Merchant Street in a turn of the 20th century home in the historic district. The winery features a wine tasting room, a shop, and a Bed and Breakfast. The Ste. Genevieve Winery specialties include dry and sweet wines grown from their 13-acre vineyard and seasonal fruit wines made from the harvests of local orchards. The historic buildings, shops, and restaurants of Ste. Genevieve all are within walking distance from the winery.

To continue the tour take MO-32 west past the I-55 interchange to Route-B and follow Route-B past the little town of River aux Vases and take a left on Route-P. Follow Route-P until you see a sign directing you to take a right onto Cave Road. Here you will find the Cave Vineyard. The winery derives its name from a cave on the property that was a saltpeter mine in Revolutionary War days and reportedly was once used as a hideout by Jesse James. Cave Vineyard has 14 acres of vineyards and makes chardonel and traminette from white grapes and chambourcin and norton from red grapes.

To get to the next stop on the Route du Vin you will have to travel down the gravel roads of the backcountry of Sainte Genevieve County. Travelers will be confronted with a fork in the road (there will be no signs) and should bear left on what is Saline Creek Road. This stretch of the trip is especially beautiful in late autumn as the road winds past farms and through forests. At the next intersection there will be a small sign that will direct you to take a left to reach Route-WW.

Saline Creek Road will end at Route-WW and you should travel west by taking a right. Within a few hundred yards is Chaumette Vineyards and Winery. The tasting room is patterned after an 18th century French Creole style vertical-log house. The winery also has a unique grill and has a wide porch that looks out over the vineyards and local farms. Chaumette produces more than a dozen wines from Missouri grapes, ranging from dry to sweet.

Backtracking east on Route-WW and taking a right on Boyd Road (CR-2199) will lead you to the Charleville Vineyards Winery & Microbrewery located at 16937 Boyd Road. Visitors can sample handcrafted wines in the tasting room. The microbrewery makes an assortment of ales, lagers, and seasonal beers. A refurbished 1860ís log cabin on the property serves as a two-room Bed & Breakfast for guests on weekends.

Taking Boyd back to WW, taking a left, and traveling west on Route-WW will take you to the last stop on the tour, which is Crown Valley Winery (23589 State Route WW.) The 800-acre estate features wine tasting and live music on the weekends. The winery uses both Missouri grapes and California-grown juice to produce over 50 varieties of red, white, fruit, and sparkling wines.

To return to Sainte Genevieve follow Route-WW west until it intersects with Route-B and take a right. Follow Route-B north until you reach MO-32 and take a right and follow MO-32 east back into Sainte Genevieve. The Charleville Vineyards Winery & Microbrewery has a second wine tasting room is located next to the Main Street Inn at the corner of Main and Washington streets in Sainte Genevieve.

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