Loveland’s New Destination for Wine Lovers, Sweet Heart Winery
As we drove up to the new Sweet Heart Winery in west Loveland last weekend, it was hard to believe that we were on Colorado’s Front Range. After all, most wineries such as this are either located on Colorado’s Western Slope or out-of-state. Loveland is lucky to have such a state-of-the-art winery in its backyard.
Sweet Heart Winery wines aren’t new to Loveland. Years ago, a group of friends started making wine together, eventually two of the six, David Burks and Jack Cantley, decided to go pro and formed Sweetheart City Wines. They started selling their product in 2010.
The new, 6,600 square foot Sweet Heart Winery, located at 5,500 W. US 34, represents a dream come true for the Burks and Cantleys. The newly built building, which resembles a large, contemporary barn, is located on seven acres nestles along the Little Thompson River. The property not only allows the winery to increase production exponentially, but gave the owners the ability to have a large tasting room and provide venue space for weddings and other functions.
The spacious tasting room has a light, incredibly bright and airy feel. Ryan and I sipped our way through a lovely wine flight while chatting with owner, Kathy Burks, who has visible passion for the project.
The tasting room includes a small shopping area with lots of gifts perfect for wine lovers. There is inside and outside seating and guests can order cheese plates made daily in the winery’s catering kitchen.
The real star at this Loveland winery is the property. The lush green grass between the winery building and the Little Thompson just begs visitors to take off their shoes and enjoy the coolness of the manicured lawn, and the wildness of the cottonwoods and other vegetation on the banks of the river make for a stunning visual contrast.
Eventually, there will be a riverside waterfall feature and permanent deck at the river’s edge, but for now it remains in its natural state.
Sweet Heart Winery is ideal for couples looking for the quintessential Colorado backdrop to their nuptials, complete with the sounds of water flowing over rock. In fact, Sweet Heart Winery has already hosted one wedding and expects to host many others. The space would also be perfect for family reunions, anniversary celebrations or other large parties.
After our flight, Ryan and I ordered the winery’s Riesling which is made from Colorado-grown grapes out of Palisade. Sweet Heart Winery sources most of their grapes from California, but are, with the help of Colorado State University’s department of viticulture and enology, growing grapes on the property. They are starting with an aromella, a winter-hardy white wine grape with muscat wine characteristics (source: Cornell.edu).
In addition to hosting private events and guests in the tasting room, Sweet Heart Winery will host bands once a month during the summer. Like their Facebook page to keep tabs on the dates, times and lineup.
Sweet Heart Winery is open daily from noon to 8 p.m., and be sure to ask about their free-to-join Wine Club when you visit the tasting room. They are online at SweetHeartWinery.com.
Heidi Kerr-Schlaefer is a freelance writer and founder of HeidiTown.com. She and her husband, Ryan Schlaefer, have called Loveland home since 2003.