cygnus5Just off Main St. in Historic Manchester you will find Cygnus Wine Cellars. Named after the constellation “Cygnus” (often referred to as the Swan or Northern Cross), the winery has the honor of being the first Maryland winery to be located in a town.

Cygnus was established in 1996, and is housed in what was once a rundown slaughterhouse. With a few small structural changes, the building was converted to the quaint winery it is today. Owner, Ray Brasfield, makes all the wine himself, using only locally grown grapes. Cygnus wines are ‘Vegan Friendly’, with no animal products used in their production.

You can visit the winery on Saturdays and Sundays from 12 noon until 5pm and other times by appointment only. Tastings and tours are available for a very nominal fee.

Don’t be surprised if you are greeted by the winemaker himself. Mr Brasfield is very willing to answer any and all questions about his wine and his unique scientific approach to making wine.

Cygnus is currently looking for volunteers to pour wine at upcoming events at the winery as well as at statewide wine events. Future events include Wine in the Woods, Solstice at the Cellar, Great Grapes Wine Festival, and many more.


As this year marks the 20th anniversary for Cygnus –special anniversary dinners will be held at the winery to celebrate. The dates for these dinners are July 10th, 17th and 31st. Each dinner will be prepared with the help of the finest chefs in Maryland and will include wines in current release.

The winery is also available to rent for private dinners, parties, or wine receptions. The winery staff can help you with catering for such events, or you can provide your own.

Details for all winery related events are available on their website: