Friday, February 28, 2014

Wine Tasting in Virginia

After having gone wine tasting in Napa Valley, Sonoma, Paso Robles, Yakima, and Willamette Valley, I realized I've never tried wine tasting in my backyard of Virginia. To be perfectly honest, I have only liked a handful of Virginia wines in my life and I didn't think it was worth spending a whole day out in Virginia wine tasting when the wines aren't that great. And, in the end, I was right.

We started at Linden Vineyards in Linden, VA. It wasn't a very nice looking tasting room, at least not compared to those I've been in in California. We tasted a number of wines including a 2011 Chardonnay, 2010 Petit Verdot, and a 2010 Vidal Riesling. I didn't think any of them were worth buying.

So we headed to Glen Manor. Glen Manor is the only Virginia wine I currently have in my wine cellar so I knew they made good wines. They only had three wines available to taste and I liked two of them enough to buy them. The 2010 Hodder Hill and 2011 Rapheus were amazing. The local wine store owner in my neighborhood said the problem with Virginia wines is that they are priced so high compared to California wines that they just aren't worth the money. He's probably right as the wines I bought were $50 and $30 so they weren't cheap.

Next, we headed to Chester Gap Cellars where we tried the 2012 Viognier, 2012 Viognier Reserve, 2011 Merlot, 2011 Cabernet Franc, and 2011 Cuvee Manseng. I didn't enjoy any of them. Not to mention there were children screaming in the tasting room, no bread or crackers, and they didn't provide us any information about the wine. Two thumbs down.

Lastly, we went to Desert Rose Ranch & Winery. This was a fun place. It had a lot of character with the employees dressed as cowboys and random stuff on display. We tried a number of wines and while none of them were very good, it was still a good time.

Reflecting upon this visit, I have reconfirmed the notion that it just isn't worth wine tasting in Virginia. Anyone up for a trip to Napa? Or better yet, Italy? Let's go!

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