Don’t you love it when you run into unexpected surprises when you’re exploring? On my social media, I had picked up on a new winery and brewery, ZincHouse in Durham. A quick Google map and I discover that it is WAY out there, up in the distant corner of Durham by Falls Lake. But thankfully, a free day shows up on my calendar so I put ZincHouse on the schedule for a day of exploration. And it was a very pleasant surprise for me! Read on for the details…
As you approach the entrance of ZincHouse, keep your eyes peeled! The complex is still being finished up from a construction perspective so don’t be surprised if the roadway is unpaved or covered with gravel. Just follow the signs as best you can and press on! To the left of ZincHouse is plenty of parking, it’s meant to be a high-volume events venue so it’s just a question of how close you can get to the building. It’s an interesting-looking venue with a main structure for the winery and brewery, a chapel-type building (The Pavilion), and the Carriage House to the side. A large fountain with Greek statue and pool burbles up front as the centerpiece of the venue. Far away in the distance is a private residence where I believe the owner fo the ZincHouse lives.
The main winery and brewery building is a collage of flat gray metallics and aged browns, my guess is that these surfaces and colors were meant to be a bit more organic and blend into the country setting. There are four levels of patios across three floors, the top floor has an additional patio perching on top, overlooking everything. Inside ZincHouse, you’ll find a concrete floor, along with a lot of polished wood and stonework. Again, I think they are going for more of an organic and natural color palette with textures to match.
In the back, you’ll find all their brewery equipment that’s still being set up, a bridal suite and office to your left, and the main bar to your right. ZincHouse is currently serving beers from Bearded Bee in Durham and wines from outside wineries. Given that ZincHouse is only growing local, muscadine grapes, they will likely be either bringing in grapes from other vineyards and/or serving wines from other wineries. Beer prices are very reasonable with wines by the glass being a bit pricey! You’re probably best off just grabbing a whole bottle 🙂 .
With beer in hand, let’s explore this cool space! Head up the stairs on the right to the second floor where you’ll find the main, private event space. This larger, open space sports tv screens, round high tops covered in black, catering tablecloths along with two bars at either end. Pass through the glass French doors in front and you’ll find yourself on the second-floor patio with a nice view of the fountain down below. There’s also a back patio overlooking the forest and greenery in back of the venue, a very peaceful setting.
Take another flight of stairs to the 3rd-floor area and you’ll find a set of patios on either end of the building and then a perch patio at the very top. There’s obviously a lot of space to stretch out in and I’m not sure what the entire capacity of the ZincHouse but I’m guessing close to a 1,000 people? With over 87 acres on this property, you’ve got a lot of options and places to explore. From what I understand, they are also building an additional outside deck and cigar room right now.
While the ZincHouse is still spinning up its operations, they are currently hosting live bands and food trucks on the weekend. They may be adding a bit of food service out of their kitchen but that’s to be decided. But even as is, I was very pleasantly impressed by what they are trying to do here. Wedding, or not, the ZincHouse would be a great spot to quaff a beer or sip on a glass of wine once the weather gets warmer. While I don’t get to this area very often, I will definitely be back in the spring to see what pops up at this very cool and interesting new venue!