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Hunter Valley Winery


Hunter Valley Winery is located at  762 State Hwy V, Cape Girardeau, Missouri, but it is now closed.

Written July 6,2010 We have recently visited a fairly new winery in Cape Girardeau twice, once on Mother's Day and once on Father's Day. The location of the Hunter Valley Winery is special for us as it is located near Trail of Tears State Park and over the hill from the cemetery where my husband's mother, grandmother, and great-grandparents are buried. His family owned part of the property where the Trail of Tears State Park is located and the State made them move in order to build the park. The family was devastated to be taken from their land and moved to nearby land. Two of the family members even took their own life because of the loss of land. One of the family homes sat where the entrance to the park is now located and the other home sat where the conservation building is located.

The winery does not offer a full food service, but does allow picnic baskets. The food choices available are served in these cute baskets. The first is an olive dip and bread basket.

The second is a sausage and cheese basket, which includes crackers and grapes. The best features of this winery are the music events and the relaxing atmosphere. I keep telling my non-drinking friends that they too can come and participate at wineries without drinking. Although you are not allowed to bring in any other alcoholic beverages (they offer other beverages than wine), one can bring a picnic basket, sit back, relax, and enjoy some great music and fellowship.

The first time at Hunter Valley, we thoroughly enjoyed the outdoor setting. First, we spent some time under a table covered with a bright colored umbrella while listening to music on the outdoor patio. Then we took time to stroll down to lay on the grass overlooking the lake. There is also a deck with tables by the lake or one can take a stroll across the field to a more private deck by the edge of the woods. The field of vines can be seen from almost all locations.

Last, we checked out the upstairs of the building and found a nice little porch overlooking the outdoor patio. It was fabulous to be able to relax with the view of the lake and vineyard before us, the gentle sun warming our faces, and music coming from below. I'm ready to do that again!

The second time we visited the weather was warmer and the band was inside the building (second floor). It is a nice setting and the people around us were friendly, but I did miss the outdoor experience that we had the first time. It is my suggestion that the best time to visit this winery would be in the Spring and the Fall when the musicians are able to play outside. The wine tasting and the bottles of wine we purchased satisfied the palette. I'm not a huge wine connoisseur, so I am afraid to comment too much about wine expertise, but we did like it a lot. The winery is owned by Jim , Lea Anne & Hunter Casteel.


These are photos from 2011 when our memorable pond experience became "a thing" and each year thereafter, hubby had to get into a body of water at a different winery. He did it for many years!

Hubby announced he was going to get in the pond, and he did! I came along and just put my feet in the water so I could say I got in too. So the story goes that has been told many times. The owners son looked out the window of the building and saw his head only in the water and went to tell his parents that "there is a man in the pond naked!" There was wild discussions as to what to do about a naked man in the pond. The male owner even tried to convince the female owner to go take care of it (they told us these things happened.) There we were in the water when the owners came driving up on their golf cart. Oh where they glad when he got out of the water with his shorts on! They also told us that it is not uncommon for young folks to get drunk and dive in off the deck and that this is an insurance liability. It makes sense that this is why they cannot allow folks in the water. We had a great conversation and lots of laughs.

This was not the end of the story. About six months later we were sitting under our portable gazebo on the patio with family having a meal when hubby's brother began to tell his story. Everywhere he went, people teased him and blamed him for getting in the pond at Hunter Valley naked! It would seem that someone there that day told the owners that they knew the person who got in the water and gave them hubby's brother's name! Gossip flew like crazy into his circle of friends and everyone continued to confront him for months. Goodness, was he surprised to learn the source of his teasings was the actions of his own brother! Oh, we got a good laugh about that one and we still laugh every time we think about this story.

This event turned into "a thing" where every year hubby would find a body of water at a different winery and get in it. Of course, from then on he asked permission and everyone always said yes.

I have long wanted to compose a timeline of the events, so this is my working copy. You can see photos on these pages.

2011 Hunter Valley Winery

2012 Indian Hills Winery

2013 StarView Vineyards

2014 Honker Hill Winery

2015 Sugarloaf Vineyard

2016 Apple Creek Vineyard and Winery

March 8, 2014

This was the last time we visited Hunter Valley. It was not a good experience. I parked next to the fence and it appeared to be gravel, but instead my car sank into the mud. The owner was kind enough to pull us out, but in doing so, our rear view mirror busted on the fence. We did not turn it into insurance because we had given him permission to pull us out, so we were out of pocket a lot of money. The owner was pulling out lots of cars that day. He did tell me that the cost of adding gravel was too much for what he was making at the winery, so he had chosen not to do so. With all the good memories we had here, it ended on a not so good memory.