Two Lions Winery
The sign for Two Lions Winery is a bit deceiving until you understand the concept. On arrival, the top of the sign says Two Lions Winery followed at the bottom by Palm Harbor Brewing. I thought these were 2 different establishments, to my surprise and delight, it is all 1 business. Two Lions sells beer, wine, mead, and wine slushies. Almost all of there products are made in house and done in small batches by the owner Rose and her Crew.
Due to the variety that Two Lions offers I will be writing several articles about them over several trips. In this one, we will focus on the Wine Slushies and the Mead. On my next visit, I will sit down with Nicky (bartender) and hopefully Rose herself to taste and discuss there wines.
Rose and her husband originally opened Two Lions Winery in 2009 in the town of Dunedin a short ways away. In 2015 they opened the location that I visit and Rose’s husband passed away shortly after. It was at this location that she expanded her variety of beverages.
As I approach the building it is all very laid back. The front of the Building sports lawn chairs with umbrellas and a fire pit. This is a place I want to spend many Florida summers. The tasting room is in an old house, as many businesses in the area are. This makes it feel like you are going to a friends house on a Saturday to drink a beer and chill. When you walk in there are some scattered tables and chairs in the living room, dining room, and bar space with stools and the tap behind it.
I was greeted with the happiest most exuberant smile from Nicky as we approached the bar. Very often on our outings my husband and have found many breweries to have bartenders that are a bit snobby or lacking interest to help. We did not have this issue at Two Lions, Nicky was very sweet and very knowledgeable. Rose has put her work into her employees because Nicky seemed to know everything about the products he is there to pour. Every question I threw at him including the occasional stupid one he came back with an answer and a smile on his face. All signs of a quality bartender!!!
Let’s start with the wine lushy….. I mean Slushy. They always offer 2 flavors of slushy, the Sangria being the steady and sold by the bottle, a second flavor alternating. It is delish, girly, but not too girly that my husband didn’t feel insecure enough to keep stealing it. Both slushies are made with wine as the only alcoholic and very refreshing, perfect for a warm summer night. The alternate flavor tonight was Peach which is made with Chardonnay. Nicky informs me that as an alternative Rose may make a strawberry or a margarita slushy. I can’t wait to try them!
Tonight I opted for the bartender’s suggestion and got the mixed wine slushy of both flavors. All I have to say is best of both worlds and all I was missing was an umbrella for the drink.
Two Lions Meads
I started with a sample of the blackberry mead and couldn’t move further until I had a glass. Its 14% alcohol content is the reason I will need several visits to do my sampling. Ruby in color with an orange hue, flakes of blackberry dancing around the glass as I sip. Sweet on the nose with a light blackberry finish and smooth as I sip. I enjoyed spending time with this glass.
Classic Mead and Classically Sweet Mead
The Classic Mead has a clean but strong taste, its not a girly drink as it definitely tastes strong and smooth. The Classically Sweet Mead is very similar and was described to me as basically the same as the classical but with an extra touch of Orange Blossom Honey for the flavoring and the fullness. I enjoyed the thick body and full flavor.
Cake in a bottle!!!! This drink can get me in trouble. Sugar and coffee, and I swear I could taste the sponge of the ladyfingers layer by layer in my glass. You need this in your life, trust me. I am not sure what else to say about this mead. It is so complex and simple at the same time. Honestly, I feel that I will need to try this many more times before I can come to an accurate understanding of it. The Tiramisu Mead is worth the trip all on its own and I am in love with it.
Ill Be Back
From what I have seen Rose must be doing something right. Her employees are committed and it seems so are their families. While talking to Nicky his wife came in and he explained someone had called in sick. Out of love for the owner, he and his wife volunteered their day off to come in and help. We found her diligently washing glasses and helping as best she could.
As I prepared to leave Two Lions I was able to meet Rose. She gave me even more respect for her and her establishment as she shook my hand when she learned why I had come and said “tell it like it is.” I will be returning shortly to sit down with Nicky and, hopefully, Rose to work on my companion article all about there wine experience.