TOASTING FALL AT CEDAR LAKE CELLARS

Great Weather Expected for Last Weekend at Lakeside Grill – Cedar Lake Cellars

WRIGHT CITY, MO: (STLRestaurant.News) — With unseasonably warm weather this fall and the trees at the height of their color, a weekend drive to an elegant winery in the countryside beckons.  And those venturing west from St. Louis to Cedar Lake Cellars (11008 Schreckengast Road near Wright City and Forestell) can sip some excellent wines, enjoy a lovely meal, or simply soak up the autumn scenery surrounding their two picturesque lakes.  The winery is about 50-miles from downtown St. Louis, about 36-miles west of Interstate 270, in Warren County.

Schreckengast Farm dates back to the 1930s. Carl Bolm bought it and began restoring it in 2002 with plans to create a premier events location.  The centerpiece is the charming, big red barn with its original timbers and embellishments made from reclaimed wood.  Bolm was aiming for a venue that offered cosmopolitan country charm in a beautifully sustainable environment.  He hit the mark with the barn and then in 2010 he restored the old machine shed and storage area, creating the wine tasting bar and restaurant.

Cedar Lake Cellars has grown into a charming destination for weekend retreats from the city.  The winery makes it an ideal destination for lunch or dinner, as well as private events or corporate gatherings.  There are three primary ways for weekenders to enjoy Cedar Lake Cellars: the Lakeside Grille (lunch and dinner), the formal Dining Room (dinner and Sunday brunch), or simple picnic fare along the lake.

Unless you’re attending a private event at the Big Red Barn, Cedar Lake Cellars is an over 21 only establishment.  They have lovely grounds, but they don’t allow pets either.  There are no exceptions.  Also, they’re only open on weekends: Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Certain amenities are seasonal, and others have limited hours.  The tasting bar is available any time the winery is open; so is the grab and go counter offering light snacks, salads and wraps.  And there is live music most Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

The first weekend in November is the last one of the season for the fire pits.  The warmer weather we’re having this year makes this a terrific destination for an autumn evening.  For $60 you can reserve a fire pit from 6 to 9 p.m. and a dedicated server for beverage service.  For $75, you can upgrade your package to include s’mores, water bottles and a bottle of Cedar Lake Cellars Fire Truck to share!

November 4 – 6 is the last weekend this year for The Lakeside Grille as well.  It’s open Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 8 p.m.  The Grille features a full menu of appetizers, soups, salads and sandwiches made with locally grown ingredients.  Sandwiches made of smoked chicken, turkey, pork shoulder, or beef brisket.  Nachos topped with smoked pork, chicken or beef brisket.  Warm Bavarian pretzels (from Companion Baking) served with a white cheese sauce.  And sides like baked beans with ground beef and molasses, apple slaw, and artisan chips (Billy Goat Chip Company).  You can enjoy your meal inside their cozy hearth room or outside under the covered patio.

Dinner in the main dining room is a special experience.  Executive Chef Aaron Lyons has designed an elegant menu that pairs well with wine.  There are simply no bad choices on it.  You might start with the baked chèvre (with sundried tomato pesto), or the duck confit sliders (topped with apple slaw and a fried quail egg).  Follow with a fresh salad topped with one of their house made dressings.  Then move on to the prime rib and roasted garlic mashed potatoes, or try the wild caught Alaskan Salmon with sweet bourbon glaze and wild mushroom risotto.  They also offer an excellent Andouille-stuffed Quail and a delicious take on the classic shrimp and grits.  There are wine pairings suggested for each menu item, or you can ask the tableside sommelier for guidance.

Whatever you do, don’t skip dessert!  You’ll regret it!  You can’t pass up choices like the merlot brownie, a flourless chocolate brownie made with their 3 Swans Napa Valley Merlot and served with fresh Chantilly cream.  Not into chocolate? Then try the goat cheese cheesecake, fresh baked and served with a seasonal fruit compote made with their own Vignoles.  Dinner is served from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Reservations are available.

Cedar Lake Cellars is an excellent choice for Sunday brunch as well.  Their extensive Wine Country brunch is available every Sunday year-round from 10:00 a.m. to 1: p.m.  The brunch menu includes rotates regularly, so check the website to see what it will be on your chosen date.  Besides the omelet station, it generally includes various smoked and roasted meats, fresh breads, potato dishes, seasonal vegetables, salads, soups and desserts.  Like their other public venues, the brunch is for those 21 and older, and it includes your choice of a Bloody Mary, a mimosa or a glass of their seasonal sangria.  Reservations are strongly recommended.

So whether you want to sample wine while soaking up the sun and autumn foliage of a warm November weekend, enjoy an elegant dinner in a lovely lakeside retreat, or roast marshmallows while sipping wine with friends, Cedar Lake Cellars offers a charming place in the country to do it.

Contact Information:

Cedar Lake Cellars
Owner: Carl Bolm
11008 Schreckengast Rd.
Wright City, MO 63390
636-745-9500

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Susan Smith-Harmon

Susan Smith-Harmon

Susan Smith-Harmon is an experienced writer, editor, and broadcast journalist with a strong news background. She’s worked in radio and television news, and for national and international newswire services.

She began her career in public radio while still a student at the University of Missouri-St. Louis (where she earned a B.A. in Communications). She soon made the jump to news/talk radio, handling assignments from field reporting, airborne traffic, and news anchor, to producing and hosting daily talk shows. She’s also worked in television, most recently as the inaugural producer for The Allman Report on KDNL-TV 30, and as a news writer and reporter for national and international newswire services.

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