Plan the Perfect Valentine’s Weekend

Ah, Valentine’s Day. What’s better than having an excuse (not that you need one) to shower the love of your life with affection?

Wait! You check the calendar and suddenly realize that it’s almost two weeks away and you haven’t made plans. Sure, you could go the old “roses-and-a-box-of-chocolates” route, but who hasn’t seen that a hundred times? How about a trip? It’s cutting it pretty close to start planning an extravagant vacation now though.

Hmm… It’s time to get creative. So, you scour the internet for ideas. Eventually, you find yourself here. Well, look no further because we’ve put together the PERFECT Cape May Valentine’s Weekend getaway for you and your love.

Where to Stay

Cape May is known for its gorgeous Victorian charm, and it’s hard to go wrong with any of the beautiful historic B&Bs and hotels. But if you’re looking to really step it up, the Southern Mansion is the place to be. The New York Times has called it “[t]he only place to stay in Cape May,” and the opulent circa 1860-mansion does not disappoint. Once the summer home of a wealthy Philadelphia industrialist, the Southern Mansion has been meticulously restored and now operates as a 24-bedroom cross between a Boutique Hotel and B&B.

Each guest room is beautifully furnished with a mix of original and high quality reproduction furniture but also has all the modern amenities such as private bathrooms with hand painted tile showers, heating and air conditioning, and 32″ flat screen TVs. Guests also enjoy evening turndown service and a full gourmet breakfast in the morning. We also love the complimentary on-site parking, which any Cape May aficionado knows is a pretty big deal in this shore town.

If you and your love are looking for something a little more private for your Valentine’s Day, then you’re in luck! Willow Creek Winery also has several gorgeous apartments available to rent for the weekend that are located right on the vineyard. Imagine waking up each morning and gazing out over the vineyard as you sip your coffee.

Please visit AirBnB to view our listings for Merlot CottageMalvasia CottageChambourcin CottageHamilton Cottage, and The Stable.

Valentine’s Day Dinner

Okay, accommodations are booked, but what about the big night itself? Nearly every restaurant is filling up with reservations for Valentine’s Day dinner, and some of the smaller ones have already booked up. You’re worried that others might feel too cramped or too loud. Will there be music? What will the ambience be like? And perhaps most importantly, what’s for dinner???

Willow Creek Winery has the answer for these questions, too. Enjoy our Valentine’s Day Dinner at the Vineyard, and indulge in a romantic and decadent four-course dining experience in our rustic-chic post-and-beam style tasting room beneath seven-foot crystal chandeliers while sipping on some of the finest wines this side of Europe.

As you gaze across the candlelit table into your lover’s eyes, every sense will be aroused. Taste the divine meal. Smell the aromatic boutique wine. Feel your lover’s hand clasped in yours. And hear the crooning vocals of Rose Kelly as she serenades the room.

View the incredible menu here, and be sure to book your reservation early.

A Low-key Friday

After the formalities that often seem to accompany the traditional Valentine’s Day dinner, you and your love will probably be looking forward to some more relaxed activities on Friday. Spend the morning and afternoon seeing all that Cape May has to offer. Enjoy shopping in the boutiques on the Washington Street Mall, lunch at the many excellent restaurants, and maybe even check out the town’s history by going on a tour or two.

Make sure you keep your Friday night free because you’ll want to come back to Willow Creek Winery for Fire Pit Friday!

Enjoy live music from local musicians 6pm-9pm while you sample our unique selection of locally grown, produced, and bottled wines. Reserve a table to un-wine with a glass (or bottle) of your favorite wine and order farm fresh favorites off our tantalizing tapas and small plates menu. After you finish, be sure to grab another glass before sitting around our fire pit next to our beautiful vineyard beneath the starlit sky.

Pro Tip: Get here early and you can enjoy our Winter Happy Hour. From 3pm to 5pm on Friday we’ll be offering 20% off of our delicious tapas menu as well as glasses of Wilde Cock wines and sangrias (excludes Prestige label).

Saturday: Enough love, time to laugh!

Lucky you, you’re just in time for Comedy UnCorked! It’s been a pretty serious weekend, so now is the time to lighten the mood with a three-course wine-paired dinner and comedy show. This hit series of monthly comedy shows featuring professional NYC comedians is back by popular demand. Make sure you purchase your tickets early though because these shows always sell out.

FYI – if you’re easily offended, this is NOT the event for you.

View the February Comedy UnCorked menu and more event details here.

Is the weekend really over already?

Well, eventually every good thing has to end, and Sunday is finally here. Spend your last few hours relaxing with one last glass of your favorite wine or sangria, and maybe grab a few bottles or growlers for the road (our small-batch produced wines are currently only available on-site). Or grab a stool at the Vineyard Bar, sip a wine cocktail to shake off the last bit the Sunday fog, and catch the game on the TVs before loading up the car and heading home.

And remember, it’s not “Goodbye,” it’s “See you later!”

Barbara’s Favorite Flowers: Cyclamen

Barbara’s Favorite Flowers: Cyclamen

Barbara’s list of favorite winter blooming flowers for Willow Creek Farm & Winery and Southern Mansion gardens includes Cyclamen. Here’s what Barbara has to say:

Several years ago, I became all atwitter about winter gardening; having flowers blooming year round even in November through February.  For several seasons in a row, we had been blessed with mild winters, and I was feeling rather pleased with my gardening prowess. Having overwintered Gloriosa Rothschildiana, and numerous Dahlias, I was confident that I was up to the task. Unfortunately my sin of superbia was about to become all too apparent when Outer Coastal Cape May was thwacked with a couple seasons of bitter, windy, wet, and cold weather. Oh well, this seasoned plantswoman is used to getting her comeuppance on occasion, and being perennially optimistic I started planting something new, and questionably hardy, as soon as I had the chance. But as brainy, is of course the new sexy, it’s really just as well, and at the very least not boring.

Many of you are familiar with the florist cyclamen (frost tender), with their brilliant hot pink, fuchsia and white reverse lipstick colored flowers, wonderful lovely dark green often heart shaped leaves delicious with white marbling. Easily attainable at the local market, we purchase and place these Cyclamen in pots as decorations inside our homes.

Each flower is on a stem coming from a growing point on the circular flat tuber of the Cyclamen. In all species, the stem is bent 150-180° at the tip, so that the nose of the flower faces downward. Flowers have five petals, are bent outwards or up, can sometimes be twisted, are connected at the base into a cup, and have five sepals behind the cup.

What I focus on here is the hardy winter bloomers such as c.coum. Cyclamen are a genus of twenty species within the family Primulaceae, which originates in the Mediterranean areas (Turkey, North Africa etc.). I had received my first hardy cyclamens from Sunshine Nurseries’ Barry Glick. There is something really fabulous about seeing a brilliant hot pink flower poking out of the dull brown ground when the skies are despondently cold and gray. I find it a tremendous pick me up in the short days of late fall and winter, especially in those deepest days right before the winter solstice. Also, it really does give you a sense of accomplishment to summon forth such a burst of happy color this time of year, whilst in the spring and summer it’s rather a tad redundant.

Covet, plant, and enjoy the Cyclamen in all their frivolous forms!

2nd Annual Wine Toast~Pig Roast

20140622_101052Join us for our SECOND ANNUAL WINE TOAST~PIG ROAST JULY 4TH!!!! Tickets are going fast!!! A Pig Roast BBQ with all of the trimmings!!! A Live Band!!!! Our Delicious Wines, Sangria’s, Frozen Wine Sangria Slushies, plus Wine Cocktails at our Brand New Outside Bar!!! Independence Day was never better!!!!! Tickets are $35 each, which includes 4 samples of wine or sangria. 6-9 pm. Please call to reserve your tickets 609-770-8782!
Hope to see you there!!!

A Vineyard Valentines

wineglasswheartsHERES A LIST OF GREAT THINGS WE ARE OFFERING ALL VALENTINES WEEKEND LONG:
PLEASE NOTE: The following offers are only valid Valentines Weekend Friday Feb. 14th through Sunday February 16th Reservations are strongly suggested for any weekend visits to our winery.
*”IN & OUT”
Enjoy a fun relaxing wine tasting at our wine bar. Choose any 5 wines or specialty sangria samples for $10. per person and learn our signature 3 sip tasting system that will surely enhance your wine tasting experiences forever!

*”TAKE A RIDE THROUGH THE VINES & DRINK THE WINES”
Jump on our vineyard tour cart thorough our 50 acre farm and learn all about the vine to wine process followed by a wine tasting of 5 wines and finish with a glass of sangria. $30 per person
Tours run all weekend at 11am, 1pm and 3pm.
(reservations strongly suggested)

*”JUST CHILL”
Make reservations for one of our private couch areas and relax with your baby. Grab some wine and some delicious cheese from our specialty meats & cheese menus and enjoy “just each other”. Purchase a bottle of wine and receive a complimentary chocolate paired with every in house bottle purchase.

*LOVE & LEARN”
Reserve a private wine tasting in one of our comfortable couch areas as one of our “farm sommeliers” walks you through an educational tasting of some of our finest wines and sangrias while you relax on a comfortable couch next to your sweetheart. $35 includes a glass of sangria at the end of you’re tasting.
(reservations strongly suggested)

“THE PERFECT DINNER”
Saturday Feb. 15th 7pm-10pm
Five Course Wine Paired Dinner, held inside the beautiful Willow Creek Winery under 7 foot crystal chandeliers. Enjoy a beautiful evening at our vineyard as our wine maker Kevin Celli and Master Chef, Brian Parker from the Southern Mansion of Cape May, will pair 5 amazing dishes to 5 of our incredible wines. We would like to keep this very intimate so seating is limited to only 50 guest.
If you are interested, please RSVP as soon as possible.
Tickets are $120 per person and include:
7pm-8pm FirePit Cocktail Hour, enjoy light hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar serving tastings & wines by the glass.
8pm-10pm 5 Course Wine Paired Dinner