Five Georgia treats to seek out on your next trip
Georgia’s climate is perfect for growing a delicious variety of crops, from grapes and peaches to peanuts and sugarcane. Start your tour of Georgia’s fabulous flavors with products from these five local businesses.
1. Tiger Mountain Vineyards: In 1995, John and Martha Ezzard, doctor and lawyer respectively, changed their careers and lifestyles to return to John’s birthplace, a 100-acre farm in Rabun County to a piece of land that Martha says “is part of John’s soul.” Less than 10 years later, Tiger Mountain Wine has won more than 170 medals, including a double gold and best of class for its Petit Manseng in the Los Angeles International Competition. Their wines are served in top Atlanta restaurants and can be found in Georgia Fresh Markets in Georgia as well as in Metro Atlanta Whole Foods stores. You can tour the vineyard and taste delicious Tiger Mountain Wine in Tiger, Georgia.
2. Hardy Farms: From supermarkets to roadside stands, Hardy Farms has been turning out the finest peanuts around since the family-owned business
started in 1935. Hardy Farms uses only the finest and freshest peanuts available. Their longstanding reputation for quality has made their peanuts some of the most popular in the Southeast. They pick their peanuts daily, then clean, process and package them just for you, allowing you to take them from the bag directly to the pot. They will even cook them using their proven method of boiling and ship them to you ready to enjoy. Order your peanuts at www.hardyfarmspeanuts.com.
3. Lane Southern Orchards: Since 1908, Lane Southern Orchards has planted, grown and harvested more than 3,000 acres of the best-tasting peaches in Georgia. The sweet Georgia peach can be enjoyed from mid-May through August. This friendly agricultural operation offers more than 300,000 visitors annually a chance to see a real working farm in Fort Valley, Georgia. You can tour the farm in June and July, the peak of peach season, and get a behind-the-scenes look at the peach orchards.
4. Richland Distilling Company: Erik Vonk, originally from Holland, came to the United States in 1992 to bring the Dutch-based staffing company Randstad to the states. While in America, Erik decided to purchase a large piece of rolling land outside of Richland, an area with a history of sugarcane farming, beginning his mission to grow sugarcane, and distill and barrel-age his own rum. What began as a hobby became a full-fledged business in 2011 when Erik and Jay McCain, master distiller, created their first 300 cases of Richland Rum. In an industry dominated by large-scale production, the Richland Rum team produces their rum on a much smaller scale and completely by hand using only fresh pure sugarcane juice or condensed sugarcane juice with the water taken out. Richland Rum is now officially for sale in shops, bars and restaurants near Richland and in Atlanta. Find out where you can buy Richland Rum here.
5. Georgia Winery: Established in 1983, this is the first of its kind in Georgia and is the only winery in the North Georgia and Chattanooga area. Georgia Winery is a family-owned and -operated facility producing award-winning fine wines. If you are planning a visit to the Chattanooga or North Georgia area the Georgia Winery is your next stop! Enjoy complimentary wine tasting of all signature wines at the elegant tasting bar. Winery tours are offered every Saturday at 2 and 4 p.m. Peruse the beautiful gift shop to find unique gifts, gourmet foods, homemade fudge, hand-crafted wine, chocolates, and more.
Lauren Cleland is the voice of Explore Georgia on social media. She loves ice cold sweet tea, anything peach flavored, channeling Scarlett O’Hara in her daily life and sharing the wonders of her beloved Georgia with all of you!