I’ve talked about community supported agriculture (CSA) here before in reference to buying a share of a small farm’s harvest. The shares are bought before the growing season, giving the farmer much needed money to begin a harvest.

Yesterday on The Nourished Kitchen, blogger Jenny’s post, Beyond the Veggie Box: 10 CSAs You Don’t Know About, introduced me to other types of CSAs. I encourage you to hop over to her site and read about all 10, but the one that really caught my attention (not surprisingly) is a wine CSA.

Here’s what she has to say about it:

As the local foods movement blossoms and fruits, there’s greater enthusiasm for local wines.  Winemakers, like cheesemakers and bread bakers, are jumping on the CSA bandwagon with much success.  Similar to those wine-of-the-month clubs, wine CSAs provide anywhere from two to four bottles a month to their shareholders.  The difference is that the wines are local to your region and to the fruits that grow therein.  Most winemakers produce several varietals so you’re never bored.  And if you’re in rural Colorado, like me, a cherry wine, perry or hard cider might find its way into your basket from time to time.  Wine shares average between $300 and $700 for a full share and that equates to about $9 – $12 per bottle.  In my area retail price for local wines usually hovers between $18 and $30 so it’s damned good value to get into a wine CSA.
I did a little investigating online to find out more about wine CSAs.

There doesn’t seem to be one website that allows you to search for wineries that offer them, so if you’re interested in finding out about one in your region, you’ll have to spend a little time searching – perhaps by typing “Wine CSA” and the name of the state you want to search in.

I searched in my state, New Jersey, and found nothing. Then I searched in Pennsylvania (I live very close to the border) and found that a winery that I have visited before, Paradocx Vineyard in Chester County offers a CSA.

The way their CSA works is that members go to “pick-up” parties four times a year to pick up their shares. H’ordeurves are served and wines are tasted. There are also other advantages to being a member of their CSA like separate wine tastings and discounts on any other wine you buy from them throughout the duration of your membership.

I’d love to see wine CSA’s catch on to more wineries.

Do you have any experience with a wine CSA? Tell us about it in the comments.

Image: Bernt Rostad

Robin Shreeves ( @rshreeves ) focuses on food from a family perspective from her home base in New Jersey.

Wine CSAs: Buying a share of the harvest
CSAs aren't just for fruits and vegetables. Some wineries are inviting the community to buy into a share of their harvest.