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Moyer Winery and Restaurant
K.L. Sullivan

Moyer Winery and RestaurantSummary: Moyer Winery and Restaurant, located in Manchester, Ohio is about an hour east of Cincinnati. In addition to a winery and a restaurant with a beautiful view of the Ohio River, visitors will discover a delightful story about a group of good friends and history.

Ken and Mary Moyer established the winery in 1972. Ken had helped in his uncle’s wine store as a young boy. However, it was not until he was in his fifties that Ken decided to start a winery. Their travels took them through many states looking for the right spot to establish a winery. Ken was able to look at an area of Manchester along the Ohio River and envision what it could be in the future. Today the Moyer Winery and Restaurant is a delightful stop for travelers and locals to make to taste wine and enjoy lunch or dinner with a picturesque view of the flowing Ohio River. The current restaurant and winery building served as a restaurant, dance hall, private gambling club and truck stop prior to the Moyers purchase.

Moyer Winery and RestaurantThe Moyers spent many years working miracles on the property. While Ken was interested in the winery, Mary was interested in food. She started offering cheese trays with the wine selections. Today there are vineyards to the south and north of the restaurant. In 2006, eight acres of vineyards were added to the property. The vineyards include Vidal Blanc, Chambourcin, DeChaunac, Traminette, Cabernet Franc, and Concord. The property is well maintained. The restaurant has indoor and outdoor seating that overlooks the Ohio River as it moves slowly along on a warm, summer day. A pavilion with restaurant seating is located on the river’s edge. A gazebo is nearby.

When the Moyers decided to retire, they were particular about to whom they would sell the winery. As it turned out there had been a group of high school friends who had remained friends their entire lives and had been frequently enjoying the wines, food and ambiance of Moyer Winery and Restaurant. These 11 friends, also friends of the Moyers were disappointed when they heard the Moyers were thinking of selling. The friends banded together and purchased the winery and restaurant even though they had no winemaking or restaurant experience. The Moyers were delighted.

The wines are produced below the restaurant. James Bowman, one of the owners, is the winemaker. Ken Moyer mentored James in winemaking. They produce 2,500 cases and source grapes from other areas. In 2010 the winery produces three reds, three whites as well as fruit wines.

Moyer Winery and RestaurantConcord is a sweet wine. Ken Moyer never believed in sweet wines. However, the original owners wanted to make a sweet wine, so they made a sweet Concord. It is the number one selling wine.


Vidal offered citrus nuances on the aroma and taste. The finish was crisp with citrus notes especially of grapefruit. River Valley White was a blend of Vidal and Traminette. The aroma was floral. The taste was smooth and reminded one of a fruit cocktail. The wine was sweet but the sweetness was cut by the crisp finish. Chambourcin was a light ruby color. The aroma was of dark fruit and spice nuances. The wine was light bodied with dark fruit notes. The crisp finish had some fruit notes. Blush offered floral and citrus nuances with hints of Concord aroma. The taste was smooth and sweet with nuances of citrus and Concord. The finish was crisp and sweet.

Moyer Winery and RestaurantRestaurant

The restaurant menu includes an array of selections. Choose from several categories including appetizers, salads, sandwiches, burgers, entrees and desserts.

Moyer Winery and RestaurantBean soup was one of the first items added when the Moyers began serving food. This is made with beans and bacon. It was paired with Vidal. The soup was heavy and slightly sweet. The citrusy Vidal helped cleanse the palate. We also enjoyed sharing the lemon cream pie that was piled “a mile high.”

According to Sherri Spencer, one of the owners, the draw of this facility is the winery and restaurant together. We have to agree but also add that the picturesque location on the Ohio River must be another draw.

Whenever you are in southern Ohio or the Cincinnati area, be sure to consider a leisurely trip to Moyer Winery and Restaurant.

Moyer’s Vineyards, Winery & Restaurant
5499 Lake Road E
Manchester, Ohio 45144

GPS: N38º 38.912’ W83º 38.508’



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