Wine Country Blog: innsights to the wine Country


Posted by Meilani N on March 10, 2012


Have you met her?  She is well known for greeting each and every guest and following them around the property...We have bellmen to help acquaint you with the property but she obviously does not think they are totally up on all things Farmhouse.
Also, supposedly an outdoor kitty but known for finding her favorite guest of the evening and inviting herself in for a pet and a cuddle.  Unfortunately, she does not seem to know when she is welcome or not. And you know cats...they are attracted to those that are not true fans. 

We'll get back to Miss Charlotte in a minute...this post is really about one of those family-owned companies that is such a joy to work with -   Old fashioned customer service with a great product and wonderful story too.  Deneen Pottery  makes the hand-thrown stoneware mugs you see at the Farmhouse breakfast table.  Peter Deneen (he invented the unique engraving process) and his wife, Mary started the company back in 1972 making jars for Watkins -the spice company.  Now their specialty is making custom logo stoneware for inns all across the country (over 2000 at last count). 

Here are a few images of the process...  

Creating Mugs for Bed and Breakfast Inns - Deneen Pottery 
Deneen pottery  Deneen mug  Deneen stoneware
 hand made stoneware  deneen mug  sponging clay

pressing emblem
Deneen mug handles glazing     

Hand-made (they say 24 pairs of hands touch each piece), quality, craftmanship, and all made in America (yes, even the clay)!  All lead-free and food safe, durable, and safe for the microwave, dishwasher, oven and freezer. And based in Minnesota (some of our favorite Farmhouse guests are from Minnesota...and Wisconsin, and Texas, and New York, and Georgia, and...)


Best of all, any time I have any question or problem I call Niles (the son) and it is taken care of instantly.  We had a run of guests wanting to take one (or two or three) mugs home this last week and almost ran out.  I sent Niles a message late last Friday and they shipped them on Monday and today we have fresh supply.  The process is time consuming and it is hard to know demand sometimes so the company makes them in advance and stocks them in the warehouse ready to go for us.  (One more little service they provide as we really don't have a lot of storage room here at the Farmhouse.) It is not just me raving about them...see what some other innkeepers think on their testimonials page.

They have helped us with our artwork too...we use images from a local graphics artist Rik Olson most of the time but sometimes they need to be reworked a little to convert to the pottery/clay medium. 

Here's our collection so far... (we'll try for some better photos later)

Farmhouse chicken mug Farmhouse New Barn Mug   Farmhouse Bee Skep mug  Charlotte the Farmhouse cat

 From left to right,  the inaugural mug Chicken and nest, then the mug celebrating the birth of the new Farmhouse Barn building, and then the bee skep to celebrate the blackberry honey from the family ranch, and the present mug with Queen Charlotte comfy and cozy at the Farmhouse.

How many of our mugs do you have in your collection?  The possibilities are endless...they have endless combinations of glaze colors and many different shapes (though we stick to the flare shape so far).  What do you think our next emblem should be?

Oh, and back to Charlotte...she is thinking she could pose for another mug (a Charlotte series, perhaps). 

Farmhouse Charlotte mug and pillow

Let us know what part of the Farmhouse experience you would like to see immortalized for our mug collection...

P.S.  Niles:  love to baby Eloise!

 Deneen motto    




Topics: wine country, bed and breakfast, inn, Farmhouse Inn, Deneen Pottery, charlotte, Farmhouse

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What would be better than good wine, good company, amazing s’mores, and a cozy fire?  I can’t think of anything else I would want!  Joey and I really enjoyed the nostalgia of roasting and toasting the marshmallows over the fire!  It definitely took me back to my childhood and I had no shame in having two of them!  I couldn’t help it!.continue