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    Spend a day at Buckroe #Beach in Hampton, #Virginia. You'll find a popular cobia fishing #pier and kayak, paddleboat, chair and umbrella rentals. If you time your visit right, you'll even get to hear some live music in the beachside pavilion. Photo props to @jennaevelyndill. Post your #VA photos with #LoveVA for a chance to be featured here! #repost #ocean #howisummer #sand #photooftheday
    This is the #sunset from the #dock at #Merroir restaurant in Topping, VA last Friday evening. #Tranquility on #Virginia's #ChesapeakeBay. Swing by this weekend and get some #VAoysters in your belly! And tag your VA #oyster photos with #LoveVA for a chance to be featured here. #photooftheday #latergram #eatlocal
    @rbuck65 recently hiked Bearfence #Mountain off of #SkylineDrive, and this was the reward! This #hike is fairly short with a nice payoff. The trail head is near mile marker 56.4 on the Skyline Drive. #photooftheday #repost #epic #hiking #mountaintop #sunset #blueridgemountains #vaoutdoors Don't forget to tag your #Virginia photos with #LoveVA for a chance to be featured here!
    Have you hiked Roaring Run Trail in Eagle Rock, #VA? An excellent family #hike, the trail passes rock walls, cascading water, five foot bridges and even a natural water slide before ending at Roaring Run Falls. At the head of the trail is Roaring Run Furnace, ruins of a 19th century furnace operation. Roaring Run #Creek is also known for trout fishing. #VAOutdoors #waterfall #loveva #repost #roaringrun #virginia #perspective #photooftheday Kudos to @spezzaroo for the beautiful photo!
  • Archive for the ‘Food and Wine’ Category

    4 Ideas for Foodies Who LOVE the Outdoors

    by Casey | Posted on June 28th, 2013

    You love food. You love the outdoors. Marry the two in Virginia, where we deliver both equally well.

    Kayak to wine, clams and oysters.

    Kayak to wine, clams and oysters.

    1. Take to the Atlantic or Chesapeake Bay and catch your own dinner, but leave the cooking to one of Virginia Beach’s fine establishments. They’ll prepare it any way you like while you enjoy a little time with the ones you love.

    2. Paddle away in a kayak for oysters, clams or even wine, if you like, from Virginia’s Eastern Shore. Find littleneck clams buried in the mud of Cherrystone Creek when you sign up for a kayak clamming tour with SouthEast Expeditions. SEE also offers a kayak winery tour to award-winning Chatham Vineyards or Holly Grove Vineyards. Check the calendar at Chatham to look for special oyster and Chardonnay pairings.

    Morel found by Steve Haas Mushrooms

    Morel found by Steve Haas Mushrooms

    3. Take a guided hunt for wild mushrooms! Really, take a guided hunt. I can’t overemphasize the need to hunt mushrooms with someone who KNOWS mushrooms. Connect with Steve Haas Mushrooms – HaaShrooms – in Richmond. He has the connections to lead you on “Wild Food Forays” in Virginia. After you reap the rewards of the hunt, ask for his HaaShrooms White Sauce recipe (goes great with Chicken of the Woods, he says).

    4. Hollin Farms in Delaplane is the only farm in Virginia (that I found) that allows you to dig your own peanuts (call to verify hours). What do you do with raw peanuts? See this Pinterest board of recipes or this previous post that includes Hotel Roanoke’s peanut soup!

    Of note is that Hollin Farms is located along the Fauquier County Wine Trail. Maybe you want to pair your dig with the pop of a cork or special pairing?

    5. So I said four in the title, but I have to give you a fifth …

    The season may have passed, but I have to include the capture-and-cook notion dreamed up by bon appétit: CICADAS. Yes, the plague that was hit-or-miss this spring in Virginia found its way into Richmond by way of three local chefs – Jason Alley of Comfort and Pasture, Will Wienckowski of Ipanema, and John Seymore of Lunch. and Supper! Cicadas were caught and the trio of chefs developed recipes like Charleston Cheese Grits and Blackened Cicadas with Grilled Onions and Peppers. In the end, everyone agreed that the little (big) buggers will not be added to the menus. Try them at home? Recipe.

    As a foodie or outdoor adventurer, what would you like to do in Virginia? Do you have any thoughts on marrying the two? Comment below to let us know!



    Food and Wine, Outdoors | 1 Comment

    9 Summer Wine Festivals to LOVE

    by Casey | Posted on May 22nd, 2013

    Cheers to summer! If wine festivals strike your fancy, we have quite a list for you – one you’re sure to LOVE.

    ValleyFest - Shenandoah Valley Beer & Wine Festival

    ValleyFest – Shenandoah Valley Beer & Wine Festival

    Get your weekend started at ValleyFest – Shenandoah Valley Beer & Wine Festival at Massanutten. The fun kicks off at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 25. Sample the wines and microbrews of the Valley while live entertainment sets the atmosphere.

    If you find yourself on the other end of the Valley, check out the Cork &  Blues Fest at Glen Maury Park in Buena Vista Saturday from 4 until 9 p.m. Six wineries will be on hand with blues bands setting the tone for relaxation.

    The Vintage Virginia Wine and Food Festival in Centreville is a weekend chock full fantastic cuisine, food trucks, food and wine seminars, and 40 Virginia wineries. It’s all happening June 1 & 2.

    Historic Lee Hall Mansion hosts the Summer Celebration Wine Festival in Newport News on June 8. Live music, exquisite food, unique craft vendors and the finest wines from Virginia wineries make this one of the most memorable events on the Peninsula.

    Does Dad like wine? He’ll certainly like the venue of the Reynolds Homestaed in Critz when you take him to the Bushels & Barrels Local Food, Wine & Beer Festival June 15. Free wine glass and wine and beer samples with admission. Beverages also available for purchase by the glass or bottle.

    More wine on Father’s Day? Yep. The Manassas Wine and Jazz Festival is June 16 on the Manassas Museum Lawn. Starting at noon, it promises to be an intimate, relaxing afternoon.

    Stroll around the Alexandria Food and Wine Festival for free on June 22 from noon until 7 p.m., but if you want to taste, you’ll need a ticket. Eight food samples for $15 and unlimited wine tasting with a $10 Wine Garden ticket.

    The Frontier Culture Museum welcomes you to the Shenandoah Valley Wine & Jazz Festival June 29 from 2 until 8 p.m. Your festival tickets allows you to browse this one-of-a-kind museum, too.

    The Horse and Hound Wine Festival at Johnson’s Orchard in Bedford is always a big draw. The festival centers around horse and hound events, of course, but Virginia wineries are pouring their best bottles all day long. It’s happening July 13 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

    Looking to round out the rest of your summer? Find more festivals at Virginia.org. Want to chime in with your favorite wine festival? Do it! Comment below.

     LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
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    Couples, Food and Wine, Wine | 2 Comments

    Holiday Food Shopping Excursions

    by Casey | Posted on December 6th, 2012

    Sure, the grocery store might have what you need for the holiday dinner, but what fun is that? Get out of town or at least support the local shops for some great Virginia-made products.

    Is ham on your list? There’s no place to go but Smithfield for the real deal. Right on Main Street you’ll find Taste of Smithfield, a restaurant and store. Sample the wares, enjoy a nice lunch and bring home the bacon. Yep, they have that, too.

    Woodson's Mill

    Woodson's Mill white cornmeal

    Flours are a necessity for baking and you can purchase it freshly ground from local millers like Jim Young at Wade’s Mill in Raphine or Steve Roberts at Woodson’s Mill in Roseland. Gift sets are available from each mill as well.

    Virginia peanuts are renowned and you can get them from a few places. They’re perfect for gift-giving and pre-dinner munching.

    Virginia is experiencing an explosive re-birth of its oyster industry and has been dubbed the Oyster Capital of the East Coast thanks to being the largest farm-raised oyster producing state in the country. Lovers of the succulent delicacy can choose from seven salinity regions and get their take fresh from the water.

    If you find yourself expanding the menu for more seafood than just oysters, let it be known that Wachapreague is the Flounder Capital of the World.

    Foggy Ridge Cider apples

    Foggy Ridge Cider apples

    On to the beverages!

    Apple cider is a favorite holiday treat and Virginia has a burgeoning cider industry – both hard and not.

    In the Blue Ridge Highlands you can visit Foggy Ridge Cider, the 2012 Cooking Light Taste Test Award Winner. Growing American heirloom apples as well as French and English cider apples, the cidermaker, Diane Flynt, manipulates the harvest as little as possible to create three ciders and a cider + apple brandy blend.

    Additional Cideries and Orchards:

    Wine? Yes, Virginia has plenty of that. Take your pick of more than 200 wineries statewide. Beer? Oh yes, the craft beer industry is thriving in Virginia, too.

    Enjoy the season of cooking and travel!

    LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.



    Food and Wine, The Holidays | Comments Off

    Thanksgiving Family Feasts

    by Tom | Posted on October 22nd, 2012

    Virginia has baskets of tradition for harvest season, but for those who crave amazing food experiences paired with a dose of history, the Thanksgiving season is an absolute bonanza.

    Whether it’s an original feast at Berkeley Plantation, a meal fit for a king at the classic Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, or a lavish buffet to make Santa’s belly jiggle like mad at the Homestead Resort, turkey lovers and pumpkin pie fans won’t be disappointed.

    Find your feast and bring the whole family along. Traditions have to start somewhere – make one today where you don’t have to do the cooking.

     

     

     



    Family, Food and Wine, The Holidays, Uncategorized | Comments Off

    All Mom, All Weekend

    by Casey | Posted on May 7th, 2012

    Has Mother’s Day crept up on you? If so, you’re in luck. We did the digging so you can be the hero!

    What kind of Mom are you looking to honor this weekend?

    The Outdoorsy Mom

    In Roanoke, take her geocaching on Saturday. An event called Caching in on Scenery begins at the Green Ridge Recreation Center at 11 a.m. You can search for treasure on foot or in your vehicle using a GPS. Don’t have a handheld GPS? A limited number will be available, but a $150 refundable deposit is required to rent it for your hunt.

    Thousands of shorebirds use the Eastern Shore to rest and feed midway through the spring migration. The International Migratory Bird Celebration will be held from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. at the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. Expect workshops, bird walks with experts, guided tours of Assateague Lighthouse, and activities for the kids.

    Butterfly release at Flying Flowers.
    Butterfly release at Flying Flowers.

    The Traditional Mom

    Moms who love flowers and gardening will enjoy the Garden Fair Saturday and Sunday at the State Arboretum of Virginia in Boyce. Let her pick out the plants that make her smile at this huge sale. Spend the day – there are special events, fun for the kids, and food will be available. $10 per car.

    The whole family can sweep mom off her feet with a special carriage ride through the Edith J. Carrier Arboretum & Botanical Gardens in Harrisonburg. Both Saturday and Sunday a pair of beautiful Belgiums will be leading the way. Saturday’s rides are from 6 until 9 p.m. for mom’s who love the cool evening sunsets. Sunday rides are from 1 until 4 p.m. $10 per adult; $7 per child; or secure a private carriage for $58. 540-568-3194

    In Wytheville on Saturday, a butterfly release is planned at Flying Flowers. Flying Flowers at Beagle Ridge Herb Farm is Southwest Virginia’s only walk through butterfly house. Please register as soon as possible for this popular event. $10 for adults; $5 for children. Call 276-621-4511.

    The Wine & Dine Mom

    Quite a few Mother’s Day wine events are available across the Commonwealth – some are celebratory brunches and others are free tastings for mom.

    Additionally, she may like to sit down to a very nice meal. Reserve your space at Cooper’s Landing Inn & Traveler’s Tavern in Clarksville for Sunday brunch.

    The Art-Loving Mom

    “Where for art thou, Romeo?” Oops! Wrong play, but if mom loves Shakespeare, you need to take her to Staunton on Sunday. The American Shakespeare Center’s Blackfriars Playhouse presents A Midsummer Night’s Dream at 2 p.m. Admission is $12 to $45.

    The Fairfax Symphony Orchestra will be presenting their final performance of the season Saturday at 8 p.m. at George Mason Center for the Arts. Moms who appreciate classical music will love the FSO’s performance of The English, The French, and The Piano – a collection of Purcell, Debussy, Ravel and Elgar.

    In Norfolk, the Attucks Jazz Series is underway. Enjoy a smooth evening with Denise Donatelli in this legendary venue. 8 p.m. Tickets are $20 per person.

    See More Weekend Events

    Love is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
    Request your free 2012 Virginia Travel Guide.



    Arts, Events, Family, Food and Wine, Outdoors, Sweepstakes, Wine | Comments Off