Great Weekend Getaways: Virginia Wine Country

I recently visited Virginia and decided to spend the day in Virginia wine country. For those of you scratching your head right now, Virginia actually makes some pretty nice wine. Every time I visit I find another winery to love and some great new grape varietals! If you’re seeking a great weekend getaway and have a day or two to spend in Virginia, I absolutely suggest booking a Wine Pro Tour with Bruce Schutte, and enjoy the day tasting wine and meeting some great wine producers. Bruce provides great company, knowledge, and transportation to and from the wineries. He knows the history of VA wine country and has relationships with many of the wineries. 

Our first stop, we visited Rappahannock Cellars. This winery is family owned and practices organic farming and sustainable practices. I had the pleasure of touring the cellar with winemakers John Delmare and Theo Smith. The winery is beautiful as is the tasting room, where I enjoyed an extensive tasting of their wines. The Chardonnay is fresh and fruit forward with a touch of oak thats subtle and attractive. The Rosé was one of my favorite wines due to it’s freshness, acidity, and fruit forward notes of strawberry, raspberry, and currants. Rappahannock Cellars also produces some great reds. I really enjoyed both of their White Label and Black Label Meritage wines, which are full bodied, dry, and well balanced. Another favorite was their Cabernet Franc, which is earthy, oaky, and full of plum, blackberry, and cooked fruit notes. Subtle spice from the oak also makes this wine extremely attractive with food, as well as cooler summer nights.

Our second stop was a unique winery owned and operated by Pandit and Sudah Patel. Narmada Winery is a gorgeous facility that was founded in 2009 by a husband and wife team from India. Here you can taste Virginia and experience India! They have a very interesting history and produce some unique wines that pair beautifully with Indian cuisine. I fell head over heels for their Rosé as well as the Chardonel. The Chardonel is a grape varietal that is unique to their winery, and it was the first time I had ever tasted or even heard of the varietal. This grape is aged on it’s lees, and paired well with lunch, which I enjoyed at the winery. They serve Indian cuisine at Narmada Winery and it’s delicious. I enjoyed some of the house made Indian “street food” along with some naan, chicken, and vegetarian dishes. Other wine favorites I really enjoyed and will go back for again are the: MOM, Reflection, Lotus, and Allure. Each wine is beautiful and different. I fell in love with the overall ambiance of the winery, which includes gorgeous views and great hospitality.

After a delicious lunch and second winery visit, it was time for more wine! Bruce and I headed to Pearmund Cellars where I had the pleasure of tasting with Executive Winemaker, Chris Pearmund. Chris is one of the most well known and respected winemakers in Virginia and produces some great expressions of Virginia wine. The Old Vine Chardonnay is crisp and refreshing, which I enjoyed in the outside tasting area. The winery is very pretty with a great barrel room, tasting room, and outdoor seating area. I also enjoyed the reds here including the Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, and Meritage. The staff here is very hospitable and the tasting areas are great for gatherings with friends and family.

Summer is here so be sure to set aside a weekend for a great getaway to Virginia Wine Country. Pro Wine Tours will take you to some great wineries where you will get to taste and tour. Overall I enjoyed all three wineries I visited this time, and was impressed with may of the wines, as well as enjoyed how different each of the wines were at the wineries.

 

Sara Lehman

About Sara Lehman

Sommelier, Private Chef, & Food and Wine Pairing Expert in NYC! Sara is a Wine Writer, Wine Ambassador, and Wine Consultant specializing in pairings, parties, entertaining and education.

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