An Overnight at Gervasi Vineyard

August 19, 2021

Back in January I went out on assignment for an Ohio Magazine piece about 3 Great Getaway Stays, covering Gervasi Vineyard just outside of Canton. Gervasi’s estate has long been on our list of Ohio places to visit, and Beth and ended up loving our overnight there. You can read my review in the magazine, but we wanted to share our own photos from the stay.

Now, try to ignore the snow-covered landscapes in our photos and see what the property is all about. I’m sure it’s gorgeous in the summer, but it really was a warm and cozy spot to kick back, sip cocktails and wine, and enjoy some world-class eats even in the colder months.

Gervasi’s property is interesting in that it feels like a slice of the Tuscan countryside. The grounds are meant to be a full experience, from four different dining options (The Bistro, The Crush House, The Piazza, and The Still House) to three different accommodations (The Casa, The Villas, and The Farmhouse), with a collection of vineyards, ponds, green spaces, and patios threaded between them all.

For our stay, we were put up at The Casa, a newer boutique hotel with 24 villas fanned out over two wings.

The luxurious villas feature king beds, heated stone floors for the winter, fireplaces, their own little patios, and continental breakfast delivered to your room.

Over our stay, we got to sample three of the dining options (The Piazza is a seasonal outdoor space, obviously closed in winter), starting with lunch at The Crush House.

The Crush House is their on-site winery, wine bar, and restaurant. It covers two levels of seating, with a large curving bar and tables lining the balcony.

It also features glass walls with a view into the winery and a retail station with their wines, spirits, and local beers.

We sampled drinks and appetizers at The Crush House, and gave a hearty thumbs up to it all around. Menus rotate seasonally – we enjoyed the provolone carrozza (aka fancy cheese sticks), crispy risotto cakes, burrata with marinated tomatoes (burrata is an automatic yes from us), artichoke and goat cheese dip, plus sips of wines, boozy slushies, and more.

After a break, we strolled over to our favorite of Gervasi’s on-site dining/drink options: The Still House. Given, we were just there for drinks (ahem, a couple different times), but we really loved the space, the creative beverages, and the patios.

The Still House is connected to the distillery (which I didn’t realized they had until we arrived), and in addition to serving as the cocktail bar, it’s a full-service coffee shop and houses the front desk for checking in. The space itself is essentially one large room with vaulted ceilings, a long bar at the back, and windows into the distillery.

We snagged a quick round of drinks and – despite the cold weather – parked ourselves on the patio. Beth ordered a gimlet made with GV’s gin, and I tried the dramatically named and presented Wrath of the Bean, a concoction blending their house-made wine-barrel bourbon, Grand Marnier, Fernet Branca, house cold brew, and coffee ice cubes, all served in a French press with dry ice. Rich and delightful.

After lunch and drinks, we relaxed at the villa then took a stroll in the light afternoon snowfall around the grounds. Gervasi helpfully borders the Middle Branch Trail, part of the Stark County Park District. We strolled a little ways off the property, and as usual I couldn’t resist spying the train tracks.

After some more relaxation time back at our room, we headed out to The Bistro for dinner. The Bistro is Gervasi’s flagship restaurant, located in a gorgeously renovated barn that’s original to the property (and was the site of a famous cops-and-robbers shootout a century ago).

The general theme is rustic Italian fare, and we found it all to be expertly prepared, and in a wonderfully comfortable setting. It’s no surprise that The Bistro (and Gervasi’s other dining options) are destinations for visitors who aren’t even staying on-site.

Everything we tried was superb: steamed mussels, homemade pierogi, scallops and risotto, mushroom ravioli.

This was our opportunity to seriously sample more of Gervasi’s wines. I have to admit that we’ve become a little jaded with Ohio wines, mainly because the market is dominated by much sweeter offerings. Which isn’t bad. It comes, quite literally, with the territory.

But Gervasi helped restore our faith in Ohio wines. They feature estate wines, wines crafted from grapes from differing regions, and imported Italian wines made especially for them. The selection is always changing, of course, but I have to highlight the Lascito, Truscano, and ZinZin. All winners in our book.

Post-dinner, we strolled around some more, and then – twist our arms – meandered back to The Still House for a nightcap. We found the heated patio – intended for cigar-smokers – completely deserted, so we parked ourselves and savored the chilly night air while Beth sipped a martini and I sampled three of their house bourbons: the rum barrel, brandy, and wheated. All impressive (and available for purchase on site).

The next morning I strolled back to The Still House to take advantage of its coffee menu. Already there were folks camped out at booths with laptops and coffee in tow. I ordered up a cappuccino for Beth and an iced gingerbread latte for myself. So basic, I know, but impressively executed.

And then our breakfast (which we ordered at check-in) arrived at our door in a custom-made wooden box. It was a colorful array of croissants, fruit, a tiny quiche, oatmeal, and meat + cheese. That plus our coffee made for a lovely start to the morning.

Like I said, Gervasi features a number of outdoor spaces. The two wings of The Villas surround a large pond with patio and Adirondack chairs scattered on the lawn.

The gas firepit offers plenty of seating for outdoor relaxation in all weather.

And while they weren’t the most picturesque in winter, Gervasi’s two vineyards still made for a beautiful sight on the property.

It’s hard to complain about an assignment like this. But it truly was a fun getaway for the two of us, and we’re looking forward to returning to see how it looks in other seasons. Gervasi really offers the total package: comfortable accommodations; robust and expertly handled dining; interesting beverage options that span wine, cocktails, beer, and coffee; and beautiful spaces to enjoy it all.

Gervasi Vineyard
1700 55th St. NE
Canton, OH 44721
(330) 497-1000

gervasivineyard.com
Find them on Facebook, Twitter (@gervasivineyard), and Instagram (@gervasivineyard)

Disclaimer: this visit was comped as part of an Ohio Magazine story assignment. Photos and opinions are my own.

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FOOD + TRAVEL WRITER

I go by Dr. Breakfast, but in addition to restaurants and recipes, I write about family travel, breweries and distilleries, the arts, outdoor fun, and so much more.

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