Florence County winery looking to rebuild after fire

Published: May. 4, 2022 at 8:10 AM EDT
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FLORENCE COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) – Years of hard work were lost early Wednesday after a fire burned through half of a Pee Dee winemaking facility.

The blaze happened at the Cartersville Country Winery near Timmonsville, according to Sardis-Timmonsville Fire Chief Jeff Dennis.

Dennis added that over 30 firefighters from multiple departments, including Darlington County, Olanta, West Florence and Timmonsville Rescue responded to the blaze.

No injuries were reported.

Later Wednesday, those with the winery told WMBF News that they had just finished adding to a tasting room. In fact, they have experience when it comes to fires.

The main building of the winery was burned in 2016 - so they spent Wednesday taking the first steps to rebuild all over again.

For owner Tom Langston, wine’s been a part of his life since the very beginning - leading to him and his stepson founding Cartersville Country Winery in 2008.

“Well, my granddaddy used to make wine all his life. I used to watch him make wine,” he said. “Plant some grapes, let’s make some wine. Started off small, bought some small equipment, made wine, and everything turned out real good.”

Things went from “real good” to great over the past year or so.

The winery recently won a platinum medal from the Great American International Wine Competition for its peach wine.

But now it’s back to square one, as the fire destroyed everything in the tasting room, right down to the label maker.

The vineyard and fermenting equipment is fine though, so the winery will still be able to do what it does best - make wine.

Even better? They’ll be staying open.

”We’re still open. We’re here. We’ll still do wine tastings,” said Langston. “We’ve moved it into the groom’s room where we do weddings. We’ll be here.”

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

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