Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Wine Country....continued

Today I wanted to share a little bit more about my adventure with Stephanie into Northern Virginia (NOVA) this past weekend.  I blogged about the first part of our journey here.  Picking up where that left off with wineries II and III. 

Our second stop on this wine tour was to Hartwood Winery.  Owned by Jim and Beverly Livingston, it is a smaller winery with more of a down home feel.  The tasting room was large with a long bar and tables with seating for about 15-20. This winery has been around since 1989 and they are more than proud of that fact.  Tasting was $5 per person and the tasting glass was extra if you wanted to keep it.  The wines were all very good (you know by now I like almost anything) with their Deweese White being my favorite.  There were picnic tables outside and a covered area outside for when you just have to be outside on a rainy day.  On the day of our visit there was snow/ice covering the ground but it didn't seem to stop anyone from getting out for a tasting.  I imagine in the spring and summer this would be a pretty winery to stop at and sit outside and sip some wine.

The vineyards.

In the tasting room.

Beverly Livingston serving up some wine.

Hartwood winery.

Our final winery of the tour is a new comer on the list of Virginia Wineries.  Morais Vineyards and Winery opened it's doors in September of 2011.  It is so new they don't have the usual "grape" sign out front so beware if you are traveling down the road expecting to see signs advertising it.    You drive up through the vineyard to get to the winery....and then you see it.....gorgeous!  At first glance I would of described it as Italian design but then after talking to our host she told us the owner was actually Portuguese.  This winery seems built more as a venue than to make wine, don't get me wrong the wines are wonderful, but I do get the feeling they want to be the place to host your next....everything.  They have two tasting rooms (in case a party is using one of them they have a back up) and a large ballroom.  The ballroom comes with a balcony inside overlooking the room and then one outside (think Buckingham Palace and the newlyweds kissing).  There is a pond on site with a fountain to boot.

Tastings were $7 per person and you also got a plate of olives, cheese, crackers and bread.  I enjoyed all the wines and left with three bottles.  I would have left with all of them but then where would I store them all?  Our host was sweet enough to give us a short tour and it truly is a beautiful place.  We didn't get to see the cellar as they were using it as storage at the time being.  We did get to see pictures of it and I hope that we can see it on a return visit one day.  They do have an events coordinator on staff if you want to plan to have your wedding or a function on site. 

Driving up through the vineyard.

See what I mean....beautiful!

Enter here.

The tasting room/bar.

The fireplace in the tasting room.

The stage in the ballroom.

Looking up at the indoor balcony

Looking out from the outdoor balcony.

Looking out over the ballroom from balcony.

A shot of the stage from the balcony

Another take on the tasting room.

Did I mention this winery had it's own chapel?  Yep.  We didn't get to peak inside but it's located very near the main tasting room and ballroom.  I really enjoyed our visit here and suspect to hear more about this winery in the future. 

With all three wineries tucked in our memories for future reference Stephanie and I headed home.  We are already making plans for another wine tour in the not too far off future :) 

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