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Archive for the ‘Food and Wine’ Category

48 Hour Fall Getaways in Virginia, Part 1 of 8

by Casey | Posted on September 3rd, 2013

Fall in Virginia. What is there to say except that it’s stunning, breathtaking, amazing, vibrant, crisp and that there must be at least one hundred more adjectives that can describe the immense beauty of the season. This fall promises to be especially incredible, as Virginia’s summer was wetter and cooler than usual – the perfect scenario for amazing foliage.

The Priest OverlookWho would you pick to stand by your side at a Blue Ridge Parkway overlook when the season is near or at peak? Probably your significant other, hand in hand. With that in mind, this is the first of eight posts that will give you grand ideas for ways to spend 48 hours in Virginia this fall. Enjoy!

 

 

Much Ado About Staunton

Virginia’s foliage spreads west to east and the Shenandoah Valley is one of the areas to see orange, red and yellow first. If you’re planning multiple fall getaways, start here.

In Staunton, the food and foliage are as fine as the performing arts and history. With culture and culinary stock rising, you’d better get your foot in the door early to book a room in this neck of the Valley. Choose from quite a few accommodations – an inn such as Frederick House or Inn at Old Virginia, a fine historic hotel like Stonewall Jackson Hotel, or a Shakespeare-influenced stay at Anne Hathaway’s Cottage Bed and Breakfast to round out a visit to Blackfriars Playhouse. You won’t go wrong with any of these.

I mentioned the food. Food is important and you want to make sure Zynodoa is on your “to eat” list. Zynodoa’s ingredients are locally sourced and esteemed Chef James Harris is at the helm. Harris has kitchen management at the Mobil five-star The Inn at Little Washington under his belt.

Dive deeper …

 

Autumn Splendor in the Cabin Capital  of Virginia

Luray is the Cabin Capital of Virginia. If you’re looking for a sweet, snuggly place for the two of you to be alone, look no further.

Shenandoah Mountain Escape

Shenandoah Mountain Escape

Contact Shadow Mountain Escape to inquire about their luxury Ladybug or Bumblebee cabins. The last I checked, those two still had a Sunday-Monday availability in October. Mid-week stays are possible for the rest of fall.

Another great option for a fall cabin getaway is to call Shenandoah River Cabins to ask about their Angler, Drifter and Paddler cabins, which all sit riverfront, have a queen bed with fireplace and a private hot tub. Each cabin still has weekend availability for September and October.

In and around Luray you can enjoy Luray Caverns and a drive through or hike around Shenandoah National Park. Check out Skyland Resort Restaurant (highest elevation and amazing overlook from Shenandoah National Park), Circa ’31 and Triple Crown BBQ for great dining.

Read more …

 

Get Out on the Wine Trail of Botetourt County

The Jackson, Cowpasture and James rivers are your playground this fall in Botetourt County. Or is it the wine that’s calling your name? Either way, a getaway to Buchanan will be a memorable one.

Cowpasture River, Botetourt County

Cowpasture River, Botetourt County

Taste your way along the Wine Trail of Botetourt County, with a check-in at the Fincastle Vineyard Bed and Breakfast as a sure highlight. If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, you’ll want to get connected with Twin River Outfitters for a kayak or canoe rental to experience the Head Waters of the James and the James River itself.

There’s more …

 

Touring and Tasting DC’s Wine Country

Loving the wine theme? You’re going to LOVE Loudoun County, home to nearly 30 Virginia wineries! With that many to choose from, I can only wish you good luck!

Choose from an abundant amount of luxury accommodations, the newest being Salamander Resort & Spa in Middleburg. Also consider Lansdowne Resort in Leesburg or the Briar Patch B&B in Middleburg. Each is unique and renowned in its own right. Then, let the fine dining and wining begin …

To Eat:

To Drink:

Read more …

The Inn at Little Washington

The Inn at Little Washington

Fall in Rappahannock County

Art thrives in Washington and Rappahannock County. Retreat to The Inn at Little Washington, Gay Street Inn, or one of the other very fine accommodations nearby.

From the center of this historic town, you’ll encounter several types of art galleries and can also schedule a plein air landscape painting lesson with artist Nora Harrington. Your handcrafted creation will be quite the memento to recall your trip.

Take a tour into “The Art of Whiskey” at Copper Fox Distillery and then on to the Artisanal Wineries of Rappahannock.

See what else …

 

Subscribe to receive our latest blog posts via email so you don’t miss a thing this fall! We have part two of the eight part 48 Hour Fall Getaways in Virginia series coming up Thursday, so keep an eye out.

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



48 Hours, Couples, Destinations, Fall in Virginia, Food and Wine, Outdoors, Wine | 1 Comment

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