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Over 37 years of marriage, Steve & Sally Tatum have built two businesses and a family, which today are completely intertwined, like the grape vines growing behind their home.
Steve and Sally Tatum met when they were fresh out of college, both working at Appalachian Ski Mountain near Blowing Rock. Steve, originally from Burlington, North Carolina, was on the ski patrol during the winter, working construction in the warmer months; and Sally, who hailed from Charlotte, worked in group sales year-round. They were married in 1978.
Right after there wedding Native Wood Reproductions. At the beginning, the store sold only Steve’s handmade furniture and a few local crafts. As sales picked up, the couple decided to work on the business full-time. In 1981, they bought a plot of land and build a store—the building that would become Tatum Galleries. The Tatums have en
In 1998, when 13-acre plot of land behind the Tatums house came up for sale. Steve and Sally jumped at the opportunity. In 2003 , Steve, having always had an intrest in wine, decided to plant the first wine grape Vineyard in Watauga County. It started as a small hobby size vineyard that he and and his family would farm together and make a little homemade wine.
The Tatum's have achieved a reality of owning a Vineyard & Winery that started when they first planted their grapes in 2003 and opened the doors of the winery in 2011. Since then their adventure has grown into Grandfather Vineyard and Winery, the first producing winery in Watauga County that is producing world class wines!
Steve has been a custom furniture maker since 1977 and they have owned, Tatum Galleries, a retail furniture business in Banner Elk since 1978. Now you will find Steve in the vineyard most everyday, caring for his mountain side vineyard.
Dylan Tatum, Steve and Sally's son, is the Winemaker and General Manager. He has a 2 degree in viticulture and oenology (study of Winemaking) from Surry Community College and a 4 year bachelor degree in business management from Appalachian State University and is creating award winning wines including whites, reds, rosés, and even an ice wine.
Meet the Staff
Meet our “Bordeaux Collie” Casey. She was born in 2010 and spent her puppyhood growing up at Grandfather Vineyard. She enjoys meeting customers at their cars and “herding” them into our tasting room. She spends the rest of her day wading in the Watauga River, playing catch with customers and chasing our four wheeler through the vines. During her occasional days off, she likes to go hiking with her humans and watch the animal planet.
Nicole grew up in FL and graduated with her degree in Accounting from USF in Tampa in May 2014. She moved to Boone this past September not knowing a single person hoping to start a new adventure. She has a full time accounting job, works in the Tasting Room on the weekends and is also our special events coordinator. In her free time, Nicole enjoys hiking, boating and playing with her two dogs.
Rue grew up in deep Southern Georgia. She is currently attending Appalachian State University seeking a degree in Appropriate Technology. After graduation Rue aspires to work in the renewable energy industry, eventually operating a fully sustainable vacation resort. Her free time is spent enjoying live music and taking her fur babies on hikes and other adventures.
Originally from Sonoma, California, Chris completed his studies at Sonoma State University in 2011 and explored his passion for wine outside of California by working in vineyards from Northern Spain to Southern Utah. He also enjoys playing golf, hiking the Blue Ridge and training his pet Nubian goats.
Cole spent his childhood in New Bern, North Carolina and will be graduating from Appalachian State University with a degree in Fermentation Science in the Fall of 2016. He hopes graduation will bring opportunities to further explore viticulture and oenology around the world. Cole enjoys spending time with his dog, playing guitar, working in the vineyard and enjoying the outdoors.