Spread across 3,500 acres between Atlanta and the North Georgia Mountains, Chateau Elan is a Braselton, Georgia winery and attraction in its own right that deserves a detour off I-85. Opened in 1981, it was created by the founders of Elan Pharmaceuticals and takes its inspiration from France.
The first vines were the native muscadine grapes, but there are now many varietals. These days, the resort is popular for weekend getaways, weddings, and conferences. It was also a filming location for the show Ozark.
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The Wine of Chateau Elan
Chateau Elan was one of the first wineries to open in Georgia since Prohibition and has gone on to become one of the most awarded in the region. There are over 30 varieties using estate and Georgia grapes as well as those incorporating California grapes.
Tours of the facility and wine tastings are offered daily, allowing guests to try their favorites, including red, white, rose, and sparkling. They visit the production facility with the massive tanks and barrels that age the wine.
Activities at Chateau Elan
There’s more than just wine at Chateau Elan. In addition to the tasting room and tours, the wine bungalows allow groups to enjoy the scenery of the vineyard in privacy through glamping-style tents outfitted with furnishings and your chosen bottle and snacks. The bungalows are offered seasonally.
Overnight guests can enjoy even more, including the golf courses, racquet club, world-class spa, seasonal outdoor pool, fitness center, rental bikes, and the Viking Culinary Studio.
Where to Eat at Chateau Elan
Chateau Elan has eight restaurants spread across the property, so you don’t have to leave to enjoy a good meal. Marc Restaurant is an upscale steakhouse that highlights local and seasonal ingredients. Versailles Restaurant & Bar is set in the airy atrium, with all-day dining, including sandwiches and salads.
Grab a cocktail at Louis’ House of Bourbon, a Southern-style gastropub with an extensive whiskey selection. Located inside the spa, Fleur de Lis has light options for after your treatment.
Paddy’s Irish Pub has all of your bar favorites like bangers and mash with draft Guinness. At Sarazen’s Bar & Grille, set near the golf course, you can enjoy breakfast, sandwiches, and tacos. Le Petit Cafe has quick-service coffee and pastries while Le Soleil is a seasonal poolside bar and restaurant.
Where to Stay Near Chateau Elan
The best place to stay overnight is the Inn at Chateau Elan, which is on the campus of the winery. Rooms are spread across the main inn, the spa, and the two and three-bedroom villas. All have French country-inspired decor.
The other alternative is the Hampton Inn & Suites Braselton, which is right outside the resort. It has a design similar to Chateau Elan with the same amenities the brand is known for like free WiFi, an outdoor pool, and daily breakfast.
When to Go to Chateau Elan
Chateau Elan hosts a number of events throughout the year, so there’s never a bad time to go. The big holidays are always busy, including New Year’s and Valentine’s Day. Tennis and Wine Weekends in the spring bring together lovers of both with lessons and tastings. Vineyard Fest in the fall brings together the best food and wine of the region.
What to See Nearby
If you’re looking to explore further while in the area, you’re in luck. The North Georgia Mountains are an hour further, with hiking and even more wineries. Lake Lanier is a warm-weather favorite, with boating and recreation. The college town of Athens has plentiful shopping and excellent dining.
Tips for Visiting Chateau Elan
Chateau Elan is located at 100 Rue Charlemagne Drive, Braselton, Georgia 30517. It’s less than an hour’s drive from downtown Atlanta.