by MALINI BARTELS
In a town riddled with breweries, locals can now enjoy the newest commercial winery and fermentation spot to hit old town.
Blue Skies Winery, located at 251 Jefferson Street, brings class and subtle notes of fruit, oak, and spices to a section of town desperate for clientele. Owners of the establishment, Kate and Pat Atkin, began moving into the space on Jefferson at the end of the summer with the idea of going into business together to spend more time with one another.
“The name Blue Skies refers to Pat’s parachuting career,” says Kate Atkin, who quit her job as a pediatric nurse to pursue her passion. “Pat’s other job is as a professional skydiving instructor for active duty military.”
Blue Skies is a common saying among skydivers.
“It’s kind of like ‘well wishes.’ We think most people will attribute the Blue Skies name to wonderful skies in Colorado,” Kate said.
Even the winery logo on the windows and on the side of the building has a skydiver dot the “i” in Skies.
According to Kate, Fort Collins is the ideal place to open a winery and a wonderful backdrop for starting the next chapter of life with her husband and business partner. The couple has a passion for wine and people that shines through in their products and personality.
The winery has access to extraordinary grapes that the home winemaker does not have. Vineyards around the country supply crushed grapes to Blue Skies, which then transfers the grapes to food safe buckets called carboys for fermentation and so flavors can “marry” according to master recipes.
If you would like to be a part of the process and even create a custom label, you can do that with winemaker Dan Korte. It’s a very unique experience to bottle, cork and label with a winemaker. Blue Skies provides all of that in a classy, friendly atmosphere.
Currently, the winery carries nine wines with plans to add several more over the next few months. Fruit wines, seasonal wines, and numerous adventurous flavor combinations are in the future for this compliment to the Fort Collins beverage scene. The winery is not looking to be a part of the late night bar scene, but rather a spot where people can experience wine and pair it with cheese from The Welsh Rabbit. The hours of operation for Blue Skies Winery indicate that this is not a bar, but rather a destination for the wine taster. The relaxed atmosphere boasts local art on the walls with plans to have ambient live music. In the future, Blue Skies plans to be a stop in the Old Town Art and Foodie Walks. They also offer a VIP Club Membership featuring access to specialty batches of wine, a 20% discount, and numerous other benefits.
The winery offers a non-pretentious place for people to come out and enjoy some wine, get to chat with others, and purchase gifts for wine lovers.
The entire experience at Blue Skies Winery can be as simple or as complex as you make it. Find them on Facebook and visit their detailed website www.blueskieswinery.com.