You may have seen their bottles in Whole Foods or ordered a glass at the Dr. Phillips Performing Arts Center before a show. But, you might not be aware that Quantum Leap Winery is located in town, on a side street in the Mills/50 District of Orlando. Fortunately, for us, they have extended the hours they are open to the public. You can stop by for a taste test, Tuesday through Saturday, noon to 8 p.m. They dub themselves, “Your local urban winery.”
On a recent visit we were offered their new Pedaler’s Hard Cider, named the Best Cider in Florida by the brewer’s guild…and it was their very first batch that won! The selection is wide with grapes grown in locations like Michigan, Napa, Washington state and Italy, to name a few.
We met Norm and Matt, whose expertise and amazing knowledge of every aspect of wine-making was impressive. The passion that couples with their extensive know-how produces a fine product, of which Orlando can be proud. They also have an environmental conscience, making sure the business model follows sustainable philosophies in all aspects of production.
Ever mix chocolate with wine? Peterbrooke Chocolatier of Winter Park offered up a dark chocolate/sea salt concoction which, paired with cheese and a red, bursts with flavor. How about a wine bottle dipped in chocolate? Peterbrooke has their way of creating a special gift all in one package.
If you’re hungry, Quantum Leap offers a choice of charcuterie with crackers, cheese and chocolate to pair with your wine selection. They’ll even give you a free tour if they’re not slammed with fellow tasters. The winery is also available for private parties and weddings. The bride and groom might recite their vows between fragrant barrels of wine with guests milling about the inner workings of the actual wine production.
So, set the GPS to 1312 Wilfred Drive, Orlando, and plan to get educated as to how a sustainable winery operates in your hometown. It’s a business model to be proud of and, hopefully, will expand in a city that appreciates its local success stories.