We started going to local wineries last September. Our first visit was to Romano Vineyard & Winery, and then a few months later, we got to Running Hare Vineyard. In the ensuing months, we have made it to another seven. There are still several wineries we’ve yet to visit. One in particular keeps coming up in various conversations: Slack wines from Jubilee Vineyards & Winery, near Leonardtown, St. Mary’s County.
The problem is that Jubilee hasn’t had any wine in stock for many, many months. Obviously they must be doing something right if they’re sold out. That fact also supports all the recommendations to try them. It’s a frustrating situation for those of us who’d like to taste their wines. It’s probably also pretty frustrating for them, knowing they have unmet demand. For a while, they were posting updates on their website saying they’d have wine available in June, followed by July, and then August. I wrote to them a while back asking them to please let me know when they’d have wines available for tasting, whenever it happens, so that we can visit and sample their wares.
On Thursday, August 10th, Jim Grube, who co-owns the operation with his wife, Maggie O’Brien, replied to my email. We then spoke by telephone, and also exchanged a few more emails. He said they now hope to have their wines available in mid- to late-September. What wines will they offer? He didn’t want to say, which isn’t uncommon, given conversations I’ve had with other winemakers. I think they’re reluctant to announce a wine before they know it turns out OK.
But if you look at the wines listed as “sold out” on their website, you’ll see two whites, four reds, and three sparkling wines (blush, red, and white). So maybe we’ll be tasting a white or two, a red or three, and some bubbly, too.
Woodlawn Inn & Estate
Most recently, they have held tastings at their other property, Woodlawn Inn & Estate, in Ridge, St. Mary’s County. According to Grube, though, they are also working to get a permit to hold tastings at the Jubilee location. Whenever and wherever they finally release their next Slack wines, we plan to be there to taste them, and report back to you here.
Grube said that both farms, which they appear to jointly refer to as Slack Farms, are managed by their son Tucker Grube-O’Brien. Woodlawn operates as a Bed & Breakfast (B&B), and hosts events such as weddings. They have seven suites from which their B&B guests may choose. In the warmer months of the year, they also hold a Farmers Market on Sundays. At their Market, in addition to local produce and arts & crafts, they have wines, coffee, and liquor. ♦