VA Wine Month Round-Up
What makes visiting a winery so special is that you’ll get to talk to the knowledgeable folks in the tasting room who can tell you the wine’s history, production and fermentation methods. You can learn how the wine is a unique product of a particular cultivar of grapes grown in a particular type of soil. You might also learn fun details like the inspiration for the name or how the label was designed. Enjoying a wine tasting lets you select your favorites and purchase them directly from the producers. Plus, many of our wineries offer amazing views of the Virginia countryside.
Even if you missed the Hellawine Release Party at Lightwell Survey, you can still schedule a private tasting to sample the best of their “small batches of lively reds, dense whites and unique combinations of the two” and learn about the winemaking process. Grapes used in Lightwell Survey’s wine are grown with care in Virginia’s stony soil at high elevations, resulting in a distinctive wine that is very much tied to place.
Barren Ridge Vineyards sits on a hill that looks out over a rolling Augusta County landscape framed by distant mountains. You’ll love watching the summer greens shifting to bright autumnal colors and you relax and sip your wine. Barren Ridge’s best can be enjoyed by the bottle, glass, or flight, and there’s live acoustic music on Saturday evenings. Looking for a new way to celebrate Halloween? Add running shoes to your costume and sign up for the Vine to Wine 5K. You’ll run your best when you know a tasty glass of wine is waiting for you at the finish.
The Ox-Eye Vineyards tasting room is located in downtown Staunton. Ox-Eye offers seven estate-grown varietals that “fully express the terroir of the Shenandoah Valley.” Though you won’t be onsite at the actual vineyard, you’ll learn a great deal about the wines you sample and about growing and tasting in general. There's also outside seating and a small art gallery upstairs.
The Shenandoah Valley has a number of fine wineries that are worth the short drive to get there.
To the north, try:
To the south, try:
- Rockbridge Vineyard and Brewery
- Great Valley Farm Brewery & Winery
- Above Ground Winery
- 12 Ridges Vineyard
- Jump Mountain Vineyard
Just over Afton Mountain in Nelson County to the east, try:
- Afton Mountain Vineyards
- Veritas Vineyard & Winery
- Valley Road Vineyards
- Flying Fox Vineyard
- Turk Mountain Vineyards
- Cardinal Point Winery
- Pollak Vineyards
Places to Buy Local Wine
Mister Jamison’s sells a wide selection of local wines and craft beers. Stop in for a glass or take home a bottle or a mix-pack of beer. Accompany your drinks with a sack of 6 or 12-inch subs or salads. Don’t miss Wine Wednesdays, when bottles are 25% off.
Basic City Beer Co. is well known for freshly brewed craft beer, but did you know you could get wine, craft cocktails, and cider there, too? The wine list features several Virginia favorites, including the Gabriele Rausse Merlot, made with Albemarle County grapes. Hungry? The taproom at Basic City serves wood-fired pizza!
Make a Weekend of It
Head to the Iris Inn for a panoramic view of the Valley, nearby hiking in Shenandoah National Park, and private luxury accommodations. Better still, the Iris Inn offers a number of wine and spa packages guaranteed to relax you.
Cider House Bed and Breakfast features a historic house with modern amenities, a gourmet breakfast, and a tranquil environment. The romance package includes luscious chocolates, red roses, and a bottle of Virginia wine.