Fine wine: Hopwood moves forward with plans for winery, distillery and event center


Ron Hopwood’s dream has moved closer to reality.

Owner of Hopwood Cellars in Zionsville, Hopwood plans to build Hopwood Winery/Distillery Vineyard and Event Center on 16 acres on 2055 S. U.S. 421, corner of 421 and 200 South.

“We’ve already planted a couple of thousands vines there,” said Hopwood, who recently had permits approved to go ahead with the plans. “Now, we are moving forward with engineers and architects building a new winery in the middle of the property.”

The event center will be a little more than 9,000 square feet. Hopwood said it should be completed by late 2023. He said it should have an occupancy of 120 to 150 people.

“We’ll have indoor and outdoor wedding possibilities,” he said.

A barn on the property, which was built in 1840, will be renovated and made into a distillery.

“We’re going to make that really cool inside,” Hopwood said.

Hopwood Cellars Winery, which is approximately 1,400 square feet, opened 10 years ago on 12 E. Cedar St.

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A rendering of Hopwood Winery/Distillery Vineyard and Event Center. (Rendering courtesy of Ron Hopwood)

A Zionsville resident, Hopwood said he began thinking about another site six years ago and found the property about three years ago.

“Although we get many from the local area, most of our business is tourism and we get most of our customers from 45 minutes away,” Hopwood said. “Many people traveling through the state will stop off at the winery and pick bottles of wine. We have about 33 different wines right now from dry to sweet. (At) our distillery, we have two bourbons and three whiskeys.”

Hopwood said he might expand to a few more products.

“We’re trying to focus on quality, not so much quantity,” he said.

Hopwood contracts with vineyards in Indiana, Michigan and Ohio for 80 percent of his supplies.

“We still will because the 16-acre vineyard still wouldn’t be enough to supply a winery,” he said. “We’ll have some estate wines.”

Hopwood said as a family business, he is using its funds to pay architects and engineers to keep moving forward. Hopwood said if anyone is interested in investing, he is open to discussion.

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Ron Hopwood is the owner of Hopwood Cellars Winery in Zionsville. (Photo courtesy of Ron Hopwood)

A welcome addition

Zionsville Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Allyson Gutwein said she can’t wait to see what Hopwood does with the new space.

“He’s done such a nice job with that property and with the distillery,” Gutwein said. “I hope it turns into something really fantastic for him.”

Gutwein, who has lived in Zionsville for 7 1/2 years, said people are always looking for leisure venues.

“Having another option in Boone County is so critical to the growth and what people are looking for if they want to stop and spend their money locally,” Gutwein said. “People love wineries, and the ambience Ron has already established in his place is going to be fantastic for people to enjoy themselves in a vineyard-type setting. He has lots of followers from Hopwood Cellars. I think this will help grow that following. People love to shop locally. People love to drink local wines. When they have another option besides his winery and distilled products, now they can have an event at his place. That is going to become incredibly popular.”

Gutwein said Hopwood is a staple of the community.

“People look at what he has been able to do in the downtown business district,” she said. “This is another addition to his growing portfolio of really successful products and placement.”