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September 14, 2020

Cellardoor Winery to close Portland tasting room, focus on Lincolnville vineyard

Photo of Cellardoor Winery tasting room from above Courtesy / Cellardoor Winery Citing coranavirus-related restrictions on large gatherings, Cellardoor Winery is calling it quits for the Portland tasting room at Thompson's Point.

Citing current restrictions on large gatherings, Cellardoor Winery said it will close its Thompson's Point tasting room at the end of this month while continuing vineyard operations in Lincolnville and distributing its wine at retail outlets throughout the state and online.

The winery announced the closing on Sept. 11, with plans to close that chapter via a final, reservation-only tasting this Saturday, Sept. 19.

"The Point is conceived and designed to gather large numbers of people," the company said in a statement posted online. "Over the past four years, we’ve filled our main tasting bar with friends standing three deep, hosted hundreds of food and wine pairings, and countless bachelorettes and other special events. Happy, unforgettable memories.

"Unfortunately, as we knew (and loved) them, gatherings are not feasible currently or in the near future. So, with fondness, we’ll host our final tastings on Thompson’s Point by reservation on Saturday, Sept. 19."

As for the Lincolnville site, the company said that activity is also quiet there, with socially distanced self-directed tastings in the dining room, on its and in the vineyard.

"The vineyard, as it turns out, is perhaps the most significant constant of 2020," the company said. "To that end, we will be harvesting our first round of fruit in the coming weeks," it added, encouraging interested volunteers to help with future harvests. "Crush 2020 has begun."

Cellardoor also underscored that its goal "remains to evolve to share great wines and excellent guest experiences continually."

Cellardoor Winery is owned and operated by Bettina Doulton, a 2009 Mainebiz Next List honoree who bought the business in 2007. 

At that time long before she opened the site at Thompson's Point, she told Mainebiz, “I’m a strong believer that as we collaborate and present the wine trail as a collective, it’s not a zero sum game — it will attract more visitors to all of us.”

Doulton previously spent 21 years at Fidelity Investments managing mutual funds and people and embarked on a new life chapter after undergoing treatment for breast cancer.

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