Couples from far and wide are discovering DeBarge Vineyards in LaFayette, where 110 acres of breathtaking vibrant views are nestled atop Pigeon Mountain.
While summer weddings are favored for contemporary reasons, which include nice weather, in-season flowers and more outdoor venues options, owner Jane DeBarge said there were no plans to turn the vineyard into a wedding venue until her daughter Nicole approached her.
Nicole had visited many different venues and thought the DeBarge Vineyard would make a stunning, memorable location for her wedding, and that was the idea behind it all.
"We wanted to share the site with the public," Jane DeBarge said, noting that attention to detail is of high importance and is never overlooked. "It's an incredible hidden gem. We are continuously adding and changing and always see so many opportunities. What sets us apart is the incredible craftsmanship."
Large slates of fieldstone from Mowbray Mountain invite guests to a 3,600-square-foot pavilion next to the French-American hybrid grape vineyard that started it all. The pavilion has hand-hewn board posts and beams and acid-stained concrete, giving it an authentic Old World craftsman look.
The pavilion, built on a large piece of limestone which took dynamiting to create a flat area, includes an outdoor kitchen equipped with a flat screen television and Bose sound system, grill and a bride's room upstairs with a bathroom and king size bed. The facility has a 150,000-gallon water tank on-site which collects natural rainwater.
A 3,600-square-foot deck is being constructed across from the pavilion and will be the future centerpiece of many memories and receptions.
Everything from the ground up, aside from four doors, was hand-built by three men, Cody Bowers, Kevin Graham and Vance Jones, whom DeBarge credits for the "free flow design" and innovative approach to the structures' craftsmanship.
DeBarge has never advertised and the four weddings and four more already set to follow have all been through word of mouth, she said.
Shelia Pennington of Ringgold is the mother of the bride from the most recent wedding and was all smiles while reminiscing on the event.
"You don't really have to do anything. We let the scenery capture the moment and in return received the overall atmosphere and wedding she was looking for," Pennington said.
"I have great suggestions but no restrictions; people can bring whatever they like in," said DeBarge. "I have one bride who wants to come in on horseback. I'm up for it all. If you ask me 'Can I do...' I'll entertain it."
DeBarge also invites reunions, showers, banquets, and church and corporate outings to utilize the venue. All guest lists are limited to 200.
The rental rate includes tables.
"People love to enjoy nature and here they are right in the vineyard, which makes it special," DeBarge said. "It's an intimate setting close to everything but far away enough that you can feel a part of nature."
For more information visit DeBarge Vineyards, physically located at 21058 Highway 193 in LaFayette, on Facebook or call 423-802-4405.