Ever wonder who the first United States wine aficionado was?
President Thomas Jefferson. In fact, the third president of the United States left such detailed notes on wine that books have been written from them, including Thomas Jefferson on Wine.
In honor of Virginia-born Jefferson’s April 13th birthday and his wine legacy, we thought it fitting to introduce you to the wineries of Virginia.
Virginia has produced wine for more than 400 years, but recently, many critics have noted it as an up-and-coming wine region. While many varietals are produced in the state, chardonnay is the most widely planted.
There are around 200 wineries in Virginia. Here are three to consider:
This winery produces 5000 cases of wine a year. It’s about an hour’s drive from Washington D.C. and produces several chardonnays, rieslings and a variety of reds. Linden’s 2008 Boisseau, a spicy red blend, is a wine worth considering as we enter BBQ season, as it is a perfect pairing for meat on the grill. It’s $36 a bottle.
Lost Creek Winery
This winery has a Tuscan feel to it, and hosts many tastings and events. Its signature wine is a non-vintage vidal blanc made in a fresh light style. (Vidal blanc is a well known French/American hybrid grape). The winery also produces a dessert wine made from vidal grapes, called Late Harvest Alyce. The grapes stay on the vines well into fall, actually freezing before they’re picked to produce this sweet treat.
This tiny winery boasts a handcrafted approach to winemaking. They produce several whites, but are most widely known for their Bordeaux varietals. This winery is a little off of the beaten track, so it’s fitting they produce a wine called Detour, a cabernet sauvignon, merlot blend, that sells for $25.
Have you visited Virginia for wine? Tell us below.
Photo by RJ Schmidt, "Vineyard in Virginia"