Located at 1120 St Joseph Road, Little River, South Carolina, La Belle Amie Vineyard is a popular tourist attraction for the people that visit all the beaches on the Grand Strand (Pawley’s Island, Litchfield, Murrell’s Inlet, Garden City, Surfside, Myrtle Beach and North Myrtle Beach). It is an operating vineyard, open to the public, and is only approximately three miles from Main Street in North Myrtle Beach, SC. That is a short excursion for people that own North Myrtle Beach Real Estate or visitors that are renting Myrtle Beach Real Estate. Based on the reviews below, it is worth the travel time:
- Leslie B. from Fayetteville-“ A must see and try! The landscaping/grounds are amazing, friendly staff, and most importantly great wine! We came on Wine Wednesday – half off wine tasting! We will be returning on our next visit!”
- Robert B. from Houston–“Lucked out with 2.75 tasting Wednesday and you keep the glass. Also live music on Wednesday afternoon. Great lively group tasting and staying for the music. $5 a glass wines along with $3 beers. All on the decks and lawn. Great all around afternoon.”
As you enter the vineyard, you will travel past an old tobacco barn, Vineyard #1 and a duck pond leading up to the gift shop and the wine tasting room. The vineyard guests can sample La Belle Amie’s private labels along with some of their specialty finishing and dipping sauces, dressings, and mustards. The vineyards are beautiful, the wine is good, and weather permitting, the events are fun and plentiful.
La Belle Amie has plenty of covered areas, decks and cabanas for guests to relax and enjoy an afternoon filled with friendly conversation, wine, live music and dancing if you desire, for the price of a smile—which is free. Just grab a friend or two, bring a lawn chair, and enjoy the scheduled events they offer. They have Wine Wednesdays which feature half-price wine tastings all day; Oldies Thursdays which features music from our younger days; Wine Down Fridays which feature $4 glasses of wine all day; and Saturday Music & Wine when they are not having their Saturday Music Festivals. All of these events are from 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. on the specified days.
La Belle Amie has a Music Festival every other Saturday, which is enjoyed by both visitors to our Grand Strand renting Myrtle Beach Real Estate and locals living in North Myrtle Beach Real Estate. The Music Festivals usually have a theme with coordinating live music such as Key West Fest, American Pie Oldies Festival, Summer Parrott Head Festival, etc. with food by local vendors and lots of wine. Other beverages are available as well. The admission to the music festivals is $8, but if you take two canned/non-perishable items for the food bank, you will receive a $3 discount and the pleasure of knowing that you will be helping those in need. The food is served from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and the live music is played from 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. For a complete list of the La Belle Amie Music Festivals and other events, go to www.LaBelleAmie.com. Based on the reviews below, the wine festivals are a big hit:
- Mirand D. from Myrtle Beach—“Love this place!!! We went while there was an event happening. We brought our lawn chairs, enjoyed some delicious food and wonderful live music and even snuck in a wine tasting! There’s also a small gift shop you can browse – how adorable!!! I cannot wait for the nice weather to come back so we can go and enjoy more events here! So relaxing and fun on a weekend afternoon.
- Devin B. of Myrtle Beach—“We came here for a music festival they did and had a great time! The wine was a good price and it was good, they also had some food trucks there and you could get wine by the bottle. The festivals that they have are a good price and definitely worth checking out if you’re a fan of wine.
La Belle Amie Wine Vineyard’s history is quite interesting. A former tobacco plantation that has been in the Bellamy family since the 1800’s, the vineyard and its wine and gift shop was opened in early 2000. La Belle Amie is the European origin name of the Bellamy family, and it means “the beautiful friend”. The Bellamy family actually started building the gift shop in 1999, using trees from the land that they cleared on the site for the most part.
Uncle Gifford was the inspiration for building the vineyard, but his niece, Vicki, was the force behind it with the vision. The family’s ancestors began making wine in the South of France and the tradition was passed down to Uncle Gifford, who made wine every year from the “old grapevines”. Uncle Gifford was famous for his wine making, but he gave most of it away to his friends.
The wine barrel that Uncle Gifford made his wine in is displayed on the porch of the gift shop along with the antique spinning wheel that Uncle Gifford’s parents used to spin cloth from the cotton grown on the form. If you look closely at the spinning wheel, you will see numbers penciled in on the wheels’ spokes. It is rumored that Uncle Gifford and his friends used the wheel for entertainment. Uncle Gifford died in 1993, at the age of 83, and the vineyard’s sweet, red, muscadine wine, Gifford’s Red, is named for him and the wine he loved to make.
After Gifford died, Berta, his sister, inherited his home and approximately 38 acres, which was part of the original property settled by their parents in the 1800’s. They were both born and raised on the farm in the early 1900’s, and Berta had returned to the farm in the 1980’s to help care for Gifford due to his declining health. Upon his death, Vicki, Berta’s daughter realized that Berta was no longer able to live by herself, so Vicki moved from Houston, Texas to the farm in 1993 to help care for her mother.
When Vicki moved to the farm in 1993, she began the conversion of the farm to La Belle Amie Vineyards. The clearing of the fields and the planting of Vineyard #1 began in 1995 and by 1996, Vineyard #2 had been trellised and planted. Then disaster struct and from 1996 to 1999, five hurricanes struck the vineyard, causing serious damage to the vineyards, needing repairs such as replacing broken support posts, repairing trellis systems and replanting destroyed vines.
Finally, La Belle Amie’s wine and gift shop was opened in early 2,000 and the hurricanes have not caused any severe damage lately. Vineyard #3 was planted in March 2001. The “old grapevines” still thrive today and consist of four large vines. They use the grapes from these vines to make grape preserves sold in their gift shop. Two of the vines are over 100 years old and the other two are about 80 years old.
If you are a visitor renting North Myrtle Beach Real Estate or a local living in Myrtle Beach Real Estate and you have an afternoon you would like to fill with fun, wine, music, shopping and dancing, you can always visit La Belle Amie Vineyard and partake in the festivities. If you decide our beautiful Grand Strand is a place you want to call home, you can purchase a piece of Myrtle Beach Real Estate by calling Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Elliott Coastal Living in North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina @ 843-280-5704.