A FAMILY OWNED AND OPERATED WINERY AND VINEYARD
Jillian a local - born and raised in Central PA moved to Texas and met Mark. They got married, had kids, and decided to move back to Jillian's hometown to follow their dream and start a winery. After lots of planning and the renovation of an old auto body shop, Mark and Jillian opened Union Cellars in May of 2020.
We met in Texas, both Mark and Jillian moved there for jobs. Jillian to be a Physician Assistant in Austin and Mark to manage a winery tasting room in Wimberley.
One of our favorite things to do together was visit the many wineries in the Texas Hill Country and after a few glasses of wine our imaginations would get carried away about having our own winery someday. The more we would talk and dream about it, the more the desire to make it happen grew. Mark took a viticulture course through Texas Tech to learn about vineyard management and Jillian took an enology course through Texas Tech to learn more about the wine making process.
We were blessed with 3 boys in a matter of 3.5 years and decided we should live near some family to have some help!
Conveniently, Jillian’s family owns a 130 acre farm that has been in the family for 3 generations. So we decided if we were really going to make our dream a reality, moving to Pennsylvania and using some of the farm land was our next adventure.
So we sold our house, packed up and relocated back to PA, and embarked on a full year of planning.
We had plans of building a structure in one of the fields but then the neighbors sent out a letter saying they were looking to sell their property and move their business to a different location. The property was an auto body shop and backed up right to where our vineyard site was planned. We decided it was the perfect opportunity and bought the building.
So our next adventure was remodeling a 1970s auto body shop into the winery of our dreams. No small task!
We spent a full year renovating the property- we knocked down walls to open the space up. We switched the front and main entrance of the building to be the back side of the property to capitalize on the beautiful farm land and mountain views. We added lots of windows and large patio doors and put in a large stamped concrete patio.
During the year of renovating, we also started our first vintage of wine.
We also started our vineyard in 2020. We currently have 3 acres of vines planted- approximately 3,000 wines that we planted by hand in June. We have 6 different varietals planted- 3 red (Chambourcin, Cabernet Franc, and Baco Noir) and 3 whites (Riesling, Gewurtzraminer, and Gruner Vetliner). With time we hope to expand the vineyard and varietals planted. For now though, this is plenty for us to practice with!
Our hope is that Union Cellars becomes a stable business in the community. We want this to be a place that friends and family come to hang out and relax. Our dream is that this business can remain family owned and operated and passed down for many generations to come. Cheers!