Virginia Wine


It’s a little known fact that wines have been produced in the state of Virginia for centuries. Well, there was attempted production anyway. In the early 1600s, the settlers in British colonial Jamestown ventured to produce European grapes as a way of boosting the British economy to rival wines from France, Italy, and Germany. But they were unsuccessful in making them flourish due to various diseases and early onset of what was later identified as Phylloxera, the mites that decimated the world’s vines centuries later. Interest shifted to tobacco crops. In the 1770s, future president Thomas Jefferson attempted to grow vines at Monticello without much success, as did George Washington at Mount Vernon. By the mid 1800s, successful cultivation was possible working with indigenous North American grapes, though still never as popular as European ones. By the turn of the 20th century, grafting American to European root stock, the technique proven to ward off Phylloxera, came into practice Read more »

Mentor for Virginia Wines


I'm a chef, media pro, and former Executive Editor of Time Inc.’s Southern Living. I also write the monthly “Drink Up!” column for Cooking Light, where I recommend $12 & under wines and work to bleed out the winespeak.

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Popular wines made in Virginia under $20

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Varietals Produced in Virginia View all

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

  • Viognier

    History of the grape: Viognier is thought to be an indigenous grape of Croatia that was brought to the Rhone in Franc...

  • Vidal Blanc

    Vidal Blanc has proven to be amongst the versatile varietals in North American viticulture. In Canadian vineyards, th...

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

  • Merlot

    The Occitanian word “merlot” translates to “young blackbird.” An accurate description for this popular, early-budding...

Subregions of Virginia

Popular Wineries in Virginia View all

  • Gray Ghost Vineyards

    Gray Ghost, a family owned and operated winery, is placing Virginia on the international wine map...

  • Doukénie Winery

    Doukénie Winery strives to produce the finest wines possible and to give our patrons an education...

  • Ingleside Vineyards

    Ingleside Vineyards is nestled in the narrowest point of land between the Rappahannock and Potoma...

  • Pearmund Cellars

    Voted Virginia's Favorite Winery in 2007, Pearmund Cellars is located in the beautiful foothills ...

  • Michael Shaps

    "Virginia Wineworks" was founded in 2007. It is a partnership of Philip Stafford and Michael Sha...

  • Rockbridge Vineyard

    Rockbridge Vineyard is the fruition of Shepherd Rouse's dream to make fine wine in his native sta...

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Virginia on Snooth

  • Okay, I was pages behind here and missed the rundown on the Carlisle.  ... grow Cab in N. Carolina, or Virginia, or something.  Where it's completely futile to try to make a cab like a Napa Cab. I think North Carolina, esp out near Asheville in the "mountains," might be a fine place to grow Barbera, Dolcetto, and Nebbiolo, for instance, but no... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?

  • We had a few moments to relax this afternoon after I did six hours of painting ... B&B vacation in southern Virginia.  I've had better, as in the Merlot we drank last night, but you cannot have great wine all the time otherwise you get spoile Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines - Post Pictures...

  • RC - You charge for friends to come over and drink your wine?  Or are you ... that we learned about at our Virginia wine tasting party on the previous day.  It was about 1.5 hours to drive almost to Harper's Ferry, close to the Maryland border in Northern Virginia.  First up was the Doukenie Winery - beautiful place but we only liked their Cha... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekend Wines - Post Pictures...

  • Yesterday we conducted another wine tasting party at our friends Sally & ... ... house in Chantilly, Virginia.  I certainly like this method of running the event at another person's house so I don't have to deal with food preparation and things of this nature.  Anyway, the theme for this blind tasting was Virginia wines, so everyone brought a... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekend Wines - Post Pictures...

  • Yesterday, being a beautiful Saturday here in Northern Virginia, started with a motorcycle ride with fellow WORMS members down to Stonewall Harley-Davidson in Orange, VA for their 24th Annual Big Damn Bike Show.  Check out the WORMS link to see some pictures of Sandra and myself, along with my buddy Woody.  We rode our 2014 Harley Ultra Limited,... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekend Wines - Post Pictures...

  • "Beginning of the week, trying to come back to earth from all that great ... offering of Vidal Blanc from Virginia."Now that's a dash of cold water after the riesling luxury of recent days. How many bottles did you bring/ship bac Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?

  • Just to let you all know, Stephen Curry went to Charlotte Christian High School ... offering of Vidal Blanc from Virginia. Actually not a bad early week starter. Fairly simple with a bit of grassiness, some decent lemon peel/citrus notes and a fair amount of acidit Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?

  • RICHARD - i find food and wine pairings by "just folks" better to ... couple woodsy Viogniers from Virginia but that about it - any recommendations.&nbs Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?

  • As an FYI, this is a pick up from the store idea, as I want to enjoy it on ... ... ... to ship wine to Northern Virginia. Now Total Wine has a 15% off coupon for Italian wines this week.  I was hoping they would issue a more general discount coupon, but the suggestion of an older Borolo (Nebbiolo) from JD does sound good.  I'll have the time t... Read More

    Forum post in the topic What have you bought lately?

  • This past Memorial Day weekend continued with Rolling Thunder on Sunday ... or ... ... or move away - our West Virginia group didn't come out this year because the folks they usually stay with ended up moving back to West Virginia earlier in May.  So it was just three of us WORMS (Woody, Sandra and myself) and thousands of our fellow riders. ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekend Wines - Post Pictures...

  • Enjoy a wine weekend in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. Blue Mountain Oasis is located minutes from 14 vineyards, as well as Chestnut Oak Lodge and Bryce Resort. Go to - vacation rentals in Virginia wine country

    Comment by 350135weekendoasis 350135 weekendoasis

  • Virginia Event Announcement (with plenty of warning to make plans)... What: 2nd Annual Shenandoah Valley Wine Festival Where: The Frontier Culture Musuem When: Saturday June 12th, 2010 "The Frontier Culture Museum hosts the Shenandoah Valley Wineries for our second annual Wine Festival. This is a great opportunity to taste the flavor of this w...

    Comment by 83884ChipDWood 83884 ChipDWood

  • And here I was, all along, thinking it would be the '07 Shaps "Meritage" that would take it this year. BUT: It was the '07 (an AWESOME year for reds in the Commonwealth) King Family Vineyards Meritage that took home the Governors Cup- the most prized award throughout the now-booming Virginia Wine Industry. I must TRY IT. Espcially if it's bet...

    Comment by 83884ChipDWood 83884 ChipDWood

  • Just as a reminder, and for those who may not be aware of it, "Virginia Wine Lover" magazine has a fantastic monthly newsletter that covers the gamut of events and latest 'happening' on the Virginia Wine Scene. If you aren't subscribed, it's worth a try and something I recommend to help you keep tabs (particularly) on all the events and festiva...

    Comment by 83884ChipDWood 83884 ChipDWood

  • If you're not already aware of it, Carl Henrickson has a fanTASTIC site that chronicles the events going on within the Virginia Wine Scene. It's a fantastic site and has more than just events but also results of contests as well as rich content concernign the "Fair Commonwealth". Fantastic stuff. I'll be bu...

    Comment by 83884ChipDWood 83884 ChipDWood

  • Paradise Springs in Clifton opened January 16th, 2010. It's currently only open on weekends, but will have a weekday schedule as well when the weather warms up. It's the only winery in Fairfax county, and the closest to DC. The property is full of history and truly beautiful, and provides a really fun, intimate party atmosphere.The winery offers...

    Comment by 393034bellawino83 393034 bellawino83

  • Micahel Shaps and the gang over at Virginia Wine Works have re-vamped their website to a "crisper", cleaner look. Worth a stop, particularly if you like either the Shaps OR the Wineworks labels ;).

    Comment by 83884ChipDWood 83884 ChipDWood

  • Delfosse is one of those places that I have been hearing a lot of good about, yet have not gotten to visit yet myself. Here's a link to their events page for this upcoming Spring. Think I'll make it a point to pay them a visit this year for certain:

    Comment by 83884ChipDWood 83884 ChipDWood

  • What: The Virginia Wine Showcase When: Saturady, February 6th (from 11 - 6), & Sunday the 7th (from 11 - 5) Where: Dulles Expo Center (just west of DC) Linkage: Contests, food tastings, seminars, all kinds of stuff; including of course some of the commonwealth's premier wineries & wine makers. List of wineries in...

    Comment by 83884ChipDWood 83884 ChipDWood

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    Page modification by 83884ChipDWood 83884 ChipDWood

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