Davesté Vineyards has continuously grown over the past 15 years since Dave and Este DeFehr bought the property in 2004. It has no plans of slowing down.
The DeFehrs think of their small staff as a family as they all work fairly close together to make the vineyard a success. A big part of the vineyard is not only the wine but the way the wine is expressed through artwork. Davesté Vineyards has an art studio where nine artists gather every Tuesday; the artwork is later used as a label and can be seen around the tasting room.
The artists that gather have a bond - a kinship of family.
“We have been together many, many years,” Este said about the Davesté artists.
The Davesté artists sometimes even bring in dishes to share, a move that has branched into the idea of a cookbook, Este said. It will feature a recipe pairing with wine and art, Este said. Many of the customers of the vineyard collect the labels and now the book will have them in between recipes.
This will be Davesté’s first cookbook and it is set to come out later this year. The recipes will have something for everybody, including healthier options.
“We live in a world that worships sugar,” Este said. “My recipes are about less sugar.”
Davesté has become a staple in not only the Troutman community but Iredell County through its partnerships with local businesses.
The vineyard hopes to expand into online sales and is looking to be in some grocery stores in the future, said Jody Bolin, tasting room manager.
Davesté is constantly growing and improving, Bolin said. While the vineyard grows they plan to partner with great local organizations that help with the health of the community.
It has paired with local entities such as Carson’s Tasty Pickles and Four Oaks Farmstead.
The vineyard continuously has regular concerts with no charge to visitors where one can find a variety of music such as shag, jazz, country, American rock and polka, to name a few.
These concerts can be attended for Thirsty Thursdays starting in April.
The vineyard also holds other events such as Sip and Paint and Let it Flow Yoga.
“You might not know the person next to you but you will know them by the end,” Este said.
The vineyard has also hosted and is fully equipped to host weddings, baby showers and bridal showers, Bolin said. The vineyard isn’t just a place for adults but for families, she said; it is a great place for families to come for a picnic.
“Wine and sunshine,” Bolin said.
There are also some great trails along the creek with waterfalls which is great for walking as well, Dave said.
The vineyard hopes to continually grow and hone in on their craft.
“We are trying to find the varieties that works best in North Carolina and what works best for us,” winemaker Leslie Johnson said.
“We are trying to experiment with bourbon barrel wine,” Johnson added. “Plan to see that around Father’s Day.”
This wine will feature flavors of caramel, vanilla and oak with higher alcohol content.
When honing in on what works best for them, Davesté has also downsized on what wines it makes in-house.
“Started vineyard with eight different varieties. Now we have narrowed it to three,” Dave said.
Davesté narrowed it down to Chambourcin, Traminette and Rkatsiteli.
“Rkatsiteli - we are the only vineyard in North Carolina to grow the grapes which are from southern Russia,” said Dave, whose parents are from Southern Russia.
Rkatsiteli is a Double Gold Medal Winner from the Dixie Classic Fair in 2018.
“Have to have something that sets you apart when you are so small,” Dave said.
The vineyard also provides additional wines from grapes they do not grow which helps to support other vineyards across North Carolina.
“We want the local community in Troutman to be aware of us,” Bolin said.