Barboursville Vineyards

Vineyards are famous for their gorgeous rolling landscapes with seas of vines. The only vista that rivals a vineyard in with full greenery before harvest is a snow-covered vineyard wonderland in winter.


The Barboursville  Vineyard’s Tasting Room is spacious and cozy simultaneously where high ceilings meet tables for four and comfy armchairs by the fireplace. However, you’re required to pay for your tasting before they’ll even give you a glass. There’s nothing more awkward, less welcoming, and less incentivizing to make additional purchases than asking guests to fork over a credit card when you cross the threshold.

Continue reading

#VaWineChat – Trump Winery


Mark your calendars! Virginia Wine Chat will be at Trump Winery on December 11th!

Virginia Wine Chat — A monthly virtual gathering to discuss the wines, winemakers, wineries and regions of Virginia. (For reference — original article announcing Virginia Wine Chat.)

Continue reading




I had the opportunity to try three STLTO wines. I got the bottles by UPS and immediately loved the labels. The silvery glittery or red stiletto pump was a perfect mix of feminine and classy. It is clear who STLTO is marking to. But it also speaks to who is behind the brand. STLTO  is an all-woman run operation from vine to bottle.

For the whole story click here:

Continue reading

Cobbler Mountain Cellars


In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, I decided to blog about a winery I recently visited that has some Irish heritage. Cobbler Mountain Cellars is growing and evolving in strides just like other VA wineries.  Instead of waiting until it was financially feasible to open a separate tasting room, the family decided to host tastings in their basement for the first two years. However, there is no sign of this when you visit their website.  Instead, the photos are all of the vine, so when I arrived, I was extremely (2)

Luckily for all visitors from now on, Cobbler Mountain has opened a brand new tasting facility that is separate from the owner’s house. Wine club members have a private tasting room .  I was surprised to see how much they cater to their wine club members.  Since their wine is somewhat pricey,  receiving a wine club member discount is probably worthwhile.

Continue reading

Vintage Ridge Vineyard & Winery


*I’m sad to report that Vintage Ridge has recently closed its doors to tastings as of April 1st*

A snapshot of the Tasting Room/Wine Making Facility

A snapshot of the Tasting Room/Wine Making Facility

Vintage Ridge Vineyard and Winery is a small winery with big style. Vicki and Bill Edmands are hands-on owners who have really made their facility vibrant and welcoming. Vicki has brought the whole building and the bottles’ labels to life with her artwork.  The tasting room doubles as the wine making facility. This is possible because Vintage Ridge only makes 1,500 cases a year. (For comparison, Barren Ridge makes about 4,000 cases which is still considered small.)


While you taste, you are surrounded by steel fermentation tanks and Vicki’s jester paintings. The windows of the tasting room let in sunlight, adding to the bright atmosphere.  They serve refrigerated water in recycled wine bottles so you can cleanse your pallet and remain hydrated. The patio is picturesque with plenty of seating at tables and around a fire pit.

Tastings are served two wines side by side.

Tastings are served two wines side by side.

The tasting at Vintage Ridge is a pretty hands off and done with two wines side by side while you’re seated at a table. The staff seats you, pours you two of their wines at a time and leaves you to taste and compare for a total of seven wines.  I love that they kick their tasting off with a wine named Maiden Voyage.  On the first weekend of each month, they offer a premiere tasting which includes a food pairing for each wine, which we tried to replicate by ordering the tasting platter. My favorite of their wines was the Syrah that we paired with some sheep’s milk cheese.

Rainforest Cracker with Goat Cheese and Pepper Jam to Pair with the Cab Franc. Honey Roasted and Salted Almonds to Pair with the Petit Verdot.

Rainforest Cracker with Goat Cheese and Pepper Jelly to Pair with the Cab Franc. Honey Roasted and Salted Almonds to Pair with the Petit Verdot.

The descriptions of their wines on their website are hilarious. For example, their Syrah is captioned, “Gorgeous color with smooth lingering spices that make you think of the Summer on the beach in Spain; Mountains of Paella and lamb and the new Latin boyfriend.” Speaking of their website, make sure you double check their hours before you visit, because they are only open select days.

Vintage Ridge Vineyard and Winery is actually for sale, because the current owners are planning to retire to Georgia. I hope the current character remains intact, because I loved my experience there.  Please be careful on your way to Vintage Ridge; their driveway is steep terrain. Until you visit some off-the-beaten-path wineries, you don’t realize that wine tasting could become an off-roading event!

How about wine and Girl Scout Cookies?

Girl Scout cookies always remind me of walking up and down my neighbor’s driveways with a wagon.  There are many things that transfer well from childhood to adulthood. In case this is something you’d like to try, I have compiled some recommendations for pairing wine with girl scout cookies.


Trefoil: Trefoils (Shortbread): Traditional shortbread cookies.

Wine Club Reviews Recommends: Light and refreshing, a Trefoil shortbread should be paired with Pinot Noir or even Sparkling wine if the mood is right.

Wine Spectator Suggests: 2007 Schramsberg Blanc de Noirs Sparkling Wine. The creamy richness of the shortbread is balanced by the fresh lively notes of the Sparkling Wine.

Foodie Blog: Pair with Veramonte Sauvignon Blanc. Beautiful aromas of peach, grapefruit and honeysuckle. In the mouth, a hint of melon with more citrus and a nice smooth honey feeling.

Virginia Version: Trump Winery Blanc de Noir or Sparkling Rose

Continue reading

Happy National Drink Wine Day!

Screen Shot 2014-02-18 at 2.36.26 PM

Though October is Virginia Wine Month, February 18th is National Drink Wine Day. “National Drink Wine Day was started to celebrate and spread the love of wine.  Loved and consumed by millions, friends and families across the country honor this sacred liquid every year on February 18.  Friendships, great times and reduced risk of heart disease are all great reasons to drink wine. “

 Google “National Drink Wine Day” if you don’t believe me. While you’re here, let me know what kind of wine you’re celebrating with, below!

Save the Sweet for Last: Why tastings are ordered the way they are

Ice Bucket

Tastings are often delivered in a particular order to help the taster have the best tasting possible. This is why when you attend a festival or visit a winery, the pourer is often hesitant to let you join in the middle of a tasting.  Having wines out-of-order can ruin the flavor of wine. I’m now going to try to answer the two main questions about why the order is the way it is. Continue reading

Chrysalis Winery

My mom and I did a full tasting and got to keep these gorgeous wine glasses.

My mom and I did a full reserve tasting and got to keep these gorgeous wine glasses.

During the warm weather months, Chrysalis Vineyard hosts its tastings outside under tents facing the vines. Chrysalis is located in Middleburg, VA and  boasts an extensive wine list. They are currently selling 19 estate wines and offer two types of tastings, the Estate Tasting (7 wines) is $5 and the Reserve Tasting (12 wines) is $10.  My mom and I did the full reserve tasting and then enjoyed a bottle of the Chrysalis Vineyard’s Chardonnay.  (I’ve got a pretty good deal with my mom where I usually get to keep the leftovers!)
Continue reading

Little Washington Winery

I decided to talk about Little Washington Winery first, because they have their Oysterfest coming up on January 25th. Oysterfest is a great event if you want to try oyster and wine pairings from VA and the East coast. I happen to be a vegetarian, so I’ll be skipping this event, but it does sound like a lot of fun.

Glass of George at Little Washinton Winery

Glass of George at Little Washington Winery

Little Washington Winery’s Dirt Road Wine Tasting is one of the most unique tasting experiences. Their sommelier, Andrew, travels all over the world to find the best artisan wines. Then, during the tasting, they put their estate wines up against the wines that Andrew finds. When I visited, I was asked if I could tell the difference between a steel barreled and a French oak barreled chardonnay in a blind taste test. (P.S. I failed.)

Continue reading