New wine trail flows through Lackawanna County
Raise a glass to — and by — local vintners.
The Lackawanna County Visitors Bureau has announced the introduction of the Lackawanna County Wine Trail, which will spotlight 11 wineries stretching from one end of the valley to the other. The year-round initiative also includes partnerships with transportation companies to provide travel among destinations.
“Wine trails have been very popular for a while now, not only in our area but across the country,” said Curt Camoni, executive director of the county visitors bureau. “Why not us? We certainly have the amenities for it.
“We have a lot to celebrate in Lackawanna County, and we’re fortunate in the visitors bureau to have the job of telling everybody how great it is. It’s going to give us a chance to show off.”
A consortium of wineries got together to pitch the idea to the bureau to promote the growing wine industry in Northeast Pennsylvania. Mark Lucchi, owner of Scranton’s Lucchi Family Wine Cellars, said the county initiative simply makes official the efforts he and his fellow vintners always made for each other.
“We all work together,” Lucchi said. “Everybody thinks it’s a competition, but we all talk to each other and have our own niches. We collaborate.”
The trail starts in Childs, Carbondale Twp., with Marilake Winery, which a pair of Italian immigrants founded, then moves to Maiolatesi Wine Cellars in Scott Twp., which features a Tusan-themed tasting room. Next there’s Case Quattro Winery of Peckville, where the Sebastianelli family produces more than 20 varieties of wines. At the next stop, in Blakely, Capra Collina Winery keeps alive generations of winemaking by the Betti family. Then, revisit Case Quattro at its Dunmore location.
The trail incorporates craft meads and ciders along with wines at Dunmore’s Space Time Mead & Cider Works before heading to downtown Scranton’s Center City Wine Cellar in the Marketplace at Steamtown. A short distance away in West Side, Lucchi Family Wine Cellars showcases the art of homemade winemaking for visitors before they move down the line to Talerico’s Tropical Winery in Taylor and Mucciolo Family Wines in Old Forge, which is housed in a renovated 1920s general store. The trail ends with Wood Winery in Madison Twp., where guests can enjoy small-batch wines made at the Wood family home.
“People will see what we have to offer, including these wonderful wineries with amazing traditions and heritage,” Camoni said. “Most are bringing family recipes from a very, very long and historic tradition.
“The wine and food stems back generations, and it’s just really quality,” he added. “We want to bring attention to it and spread the word. It helps tourism and hospitality, which helps economics.”
Lucchi agreed, explaining that the wine trail creates a logistical framework for tourists visiting the area from the Poconos and beyond.
“Instead of running up to the Finger Lakes, enjoy what’s in your backyard,” Lucchi said. “It opens up the public to experience what they have here. It’s good all around.
“It’s trickle-down economics,” he added. “People stay in the hotels; they go out and sample local restaurants. It’s nice. It’s a win-win for the whole entire area.”