Small Business: Holtkamp Winery
10868 Woliung Road, Sunman, IN (just outside of Cincinnati)
What They Do: A family-friendly, family-owned Estate winery
Owners: Doug and Julie Holtkamp (and their daughter, Avery)
How it All Began: (taken from their website)
In 2002, Doug’s love and enjoyment of drinking wine with friends and family inspired him to begin making wine.
In 2013, Doug’s continued passion led him to establish Holtkamp Winery, teaming up with Jeff McCann, who has over 40 years in the winemaking and grape-growing industry. They combine their knowledge and experience to create award-winning, handcrafted wines.
So, What Makes This Business Special?
Doug and Julie Holtkamp put more than passion into their work; they run a small business that’s all heart.
Picture yourself taking in beautiful scenery and sipping some vino as you unwind by the fire pit, take a sunset stroll through the vineyard, enjoy a family picnic by the lake, or share a few brick oven pizzas with friends, family, and live music in the dining area.
Behind the scenes, they employ locals from the area, including high schoolers who can be seen having a blast making Holtkamp’s delicious brick oven pizza, a local favorite. What’s particularly impressive is seeing how their friends and family happily volunteer to help bottle wine, man the tasting room, serve pizza, serve beer (something new they’re trying out using a local resident’s recipe), manage the vineyard and grounds, run event booths at festivals around the tristate, and any other odds and ends that keep the place humming. They always seem to be surrounded by people who support and believe in them, and they give off a sense of optimism and just genuine good vibes.
What’s also special is that, no matter how busy they are, Doug and Julie always make time to chat with guests, serve wine in the tasting room, and offer pairing suggestions for each wine and type of pizza. You can truly see the love for what they do, making sure the atmosphere is so welcoming and friendly that guests almost feel at home.
Whether you’re a wine lover or not, this local winery is definitely worth a visit. Their expanding selection of award-winning dry reds, oaky whites, and sweet, fruity wines (among other variations) will delight any wine enthusiast. But if wine isn’t your thing, don’t worry. It’s still absolutely worth the trip to try their legendary brick oven pizza at this peaceful countryside estate.
What’s more, Holtkamp Winery hosts a number of large and small events throughout the year, from cigar nights to crafting to fundraisers. And you won’t want to miss their signature Memorial Day, 4th of July, and Labor Day parties with an impressive fireworks display and talented local bands that get the crowd moving!
So, whether you’re a local or just passing through, you won’t regret stopping by this small business. And I’m willing to bet you’ll want to come back again and again. And when you do, let me know. I’d love to hear about your experience and your favorite wine and pizza!