| The News Herald
PANAMA CITY BEACH — A new winery attraction is set to open in Panama City Beach in early 2022.
According to a press release from Duplin Winery of Rose Hill, North Carolina, the largest winery in the South, the family-owned business has broken ground on its third location on 70 acres at the previous Hombre Golf Club.
Duplin Winery is building a 35,000-square-foot complex that will be the home of Southern-style wine tasting experiences featuring specialty drinks, gourmet foods, merchandise, live entertainment and Sweet Wine.
Duplin Winery has initially invested $15 million in the project and says the attraction will employ more than 50 people. Duplin’s plans include dedicating more than 20 acres of the property to conservation and preserving the land’s natural beauty. The plans also include planting an additional 100 acres of grapes in the Panhandle to support its Panama City Beach location, according to the company’s website.
Duplin is the largest muscadine winery in the world, with a tank capacity of 2.1 million gallons. Duplin grows its own grapes in North Carolina and works with more than 60 farming families to buy grapes in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Mississippi.
According to the news release, Duplin is known for “cool, sweet & easy” sipping wines. Accompanied by frozen cocktails, signature homemade crackers and gourmet muscadine cheese dip, Duplin’s relaxed and fun-filled guided wine tastings are extremely popular.
The tasting station in Panama City Beach will offer guests the opportunity to sample assorted Duplin wines as they are entertained with fun facts about muscadine grapes, Southern winemaking, the Duplin family history and the “Life is Sweeter with Duplin” experience.
Hand-bottling demonstrations will be accompanied by a presentation about the winery’s early days when Duplin first sold its wines in Mason jars before moving to wine bottles. The signature Mason jar remains a beloved item among Duplin wine fans, as select wines are offered in jars, the release said.
“We’re really excited about bringing our laid-back Carolina lifestyle to Panama City Beach,” said Jonathan Fussell, co-owner/president of Duplin Wine Family and head of the winery’s Tasting Destinations. “In the wine country of North Carolina, we’re serious about our wines but relaxed about life. We’ll be creating a place where folks can relax, listen to live music and learn a little more about our wines. We expect to host groups, parties and families.
“My family has been making wine in Rose Hill, North Carolina, for more than 45 years,” Fussell continued. “Over these years, experience has helped us learn how to become more than just a winery. We’ve learned how to create a true entertainment destination, a place where people enjoy hanging out, can be comfortable bringing friends and family, and come to love the whole Duplin way of life.”
Duplin Winery is the largest wine production facility on the East Coast. Both co-owner Dave Fussell Jr., who serves as president and CEO of Duplin Winery, and his brother, Jonathan Fussell, are deeply involved in the day-to-day operation of the winery, leading tastings, having a hand in the wine-making process and sharing their “Life is Sweeter with Duplin” vision.
“We believe in being hands-on at Duplin,” Jonathan Fussell said. “We’re proud to share our sense of family and commitment to excellence with the guests we have, and we’re looking forward to making a lot of new friends at our new Panama City Beach location.”
More information about Duplin Winery and its future Panama City Beach location can be found at www.duplinwinery.com.