Winery, Craft Breweries in Valparaiso, Indiana

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Winery, Craft Breweries in Valparaiso, Indiana

Anderson's Winery in Valparaiso, Indiana features award-winning wines.

Anderson’s Winery in Valparaiso, Indiana features award-winning wines.

If it’s been awhile since you’ve had a weekend just to yourselves, now is the perfect time to enjoy a relaxing, adults-only getaway in Valparaiso, Indiana.

Indiana Dunes Country — in addition to being known for breathtaking Lake Michigan beaches and towering sand dunes — is home to a renowned winery and an emerging craft brewery scene.

Anderson’s Vineyard & Winery, Valparaiso

The staff at Anderson’s Vineyard & Winery in Valparaiso, Indiana enjoys uncorking their 21 different wines and telling customers a little bit about each variety while the customers enjoy tasting each one.

Invariably, people leave with a bottle of wine that’s a new favorite.

Anderson’s has been producing unique, quality wines — some of which have gone on to win awards — since 1994. The winery released its first estate wine (a wine made with grapes grown at the winery) in 2003.

Today, the long-time favorites on the wine list are joined by some new varieties added by new winemaker Carnell Mitchell, who has decades of wine-making experience.

Winery Manager Tammy Carmichael said a visit to a local winery gives people a chance to find something unique and local. Visitors to Anderson’s can also purchase wine by the glass or bottle and enjoy it with crackers and Fair Oaks Farm cheese.

People can hang out in the scenic sculpture garden and shop the market. The winery offers wagon rides and tours for a nominal fee at 2 p.m. each Saturday from August to October. Anderson’s is located at 430 E. U.S. 6 in Valparaiso. Visit Anderson Winery online or call 219-464-4936 for more information.

Figure Eight Brewing in Valparaiso, Indiana

Figure Eight Brewing in part of the emergency craft brew scene in Indiana Dunes Country.

Figure Eight Brewing in part of the emergency craft brew scene in Indiana Dunes Country.

In a world where the big box retailers and chain restaurants are the same from town to town, Tom Uban believes people are yearning for something unique, something better.

Uban, brewmaster and owner of Figure Eight Brewing in Valparaiso, Indiana has developed a growing legion of fans who regularly stop by to enjoy their favorites among the 11 hand-crafted beers he and Figure Eight’s other brewmaster make and put on tap at any one time.

“Here, they can drink something with flavor versus something mass marketed,” Uban said.

“People are realizing there’s more to beer.”

Figure Eight’s spacious downtown Valparaiso location — at 150 S. Washington St. — allows Uban to have a kitchen to create healthier-than-pub-food choices.

There’s also a window between the dining area and the brewing area so people can watch Figure Eight’s flagship brew — Ro Shampo Imperial Red Ale — and the other favorites being made.

Uban and fellow brewmaster Mike Lahti put a good mix of seasonal brews and always-available beers on tap — 20 different varieties each year. Visit Figure Eight Brewing online or call 219-477-2000 for more information.

Ironwood Brewing Co. in Valparaiso, Indiana

The newest craft brewery on the scene is Ironwood Brewing Co. in Valparaiso, Indiana.

Owner Barb Kehe, after brewing as a hobby for many years, decided to open a brewery and tasting room at 6 Roosevelt Road in Valparaiso. Find Ironwood on Facebook or call them at 219-405-4644 for more information.

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Valparaiso, Indiana in Porter County

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About the Author:

Ken Kosky is promotions director for Indiana Dunes Tourism, the destination marketing organization for Porter County, IN. Prior to joining the tourism team, he was a writer for The Times of Northwest Indiana.

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