Schnebly Redland's Winery

    By Garland Pollard

    A Homestead-based winery takes a tropical approach.

    When Peter and Denise Schnebly held the groundbreaking for their Schnebly Redland's Winery, it rained. And rained. And rained. And the Schneblys, as well as the Miami-Dade County officials who came, got wet. “This isn’t good,” Peter Schnebly remembers thinking.

    The solution? The Schneblys made sure that the entire complex was covered with Florida-thatched tiki huts (20,000 square feet, to be exact) so that wherever visitors went, they were under roof.

    Located in Homestead, between the Everglades and Biscayne National Park, the winery opened in October 2005. It takes a total Florida approach to wine making with its tours, tasting room and water garden. Wines are not made from grapes but instead from tropical fruits such as passionfruit and mango. A Royal Poinciana mural was painted, reproduced on a large canvas and hung on the ceiling.

    Instead of a European look, the winery features waterfalls, mahogany doors and gardens with 50 varieties of bananas. Schnebly says that he purposely “built it as if it were 100 years ago.” For instance, the waterfalls and walls are made of local coral rock, dug up right below the property.

    “You can’t do it wrong,” says Schnebly of the local approach, including the coral. “Every way it looks great.”

    As of September of 2011, Schnebly Redland’s Winery is now the southernmost brewery in the U.S. They make beer using the same exotic fruits used for their wines.