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    Hot diggity dog! It's National Hot Dog Day, so we thought we'd share this beef brisket, apple jicama slaw, poblano #BBQ #footlong #hotdog from the Continental Westhampton for #lunch. Grab a hot dog at your local joint and celebrate! #loveva #vafoood #nationalhotdogday #rva #craftbeer #vabeer @rvanews
    Can you imagine waking up and walking out on the porch to find yourself amongst the trees with a sweeping view of the Dan River Gorge's Blue Ridge Mountains? That's exactly what you'll experience when staying the night at Primland #Resort's Golden Eagle #Treehouse! Photo props to @visitvbr. Don't forget to share your tree top stay with us by tagging #LoveVA! #repost #Virginia #porch #mountain #goodmorning #photooftheday #primlandresort @primlandresort
    Road trippers and warriors may recognize the Hampton Roads #Bridge Tunnel at sunset, though it looks different when you're not behind the wheel of a car. Beautiful shot by @slayerlovnhippy! Don't forget to tag your #Virginia photos with #LoveVA for a chance to be featured here. #repost #dusk #photooftheday #bridgetunnel #vatravel #moon #hamptonroads
    Picking #blueberries at Mount Olympus Farm in Ruther Glen. If you visit soon, you'll be able to pick your own blueberries (end of season) AND blackberries (beginning of season). Pull out those homemade #pie and #muffin recipes and get cookin'! Tag your #Virginia photos with #LoveVA for a chance to be featured here. #eatlocal #pickyourown #blueberry #summer #vatravel #locavore #vafood
  • Posts Tagged ‘wine’

    Families & Wineries

    by Casey | Posted on May 18th, 2012

    If ever you were in doubt about whether children are welcome at wineries (a la the ABC store), query no more. Your children are welcome with open arms and greeted with their own “juice” and acres of green to run off steam. Need proof?

    Potomac Point Winery Grape Stomping

    Potomac Point Winery Grape Stomping

    Barrel Oak Winery in Delaplane was recently named the number one family-friendly winery by Wine Enthusiast Magazine.
    For Mom and Dad: Award-winning wines like the 2009 Petit Verdot (13 medals and counting) and 2010 Chardonnay Reserve (8 medals including a Double Gold from the 2012 San Francisco Chronicle International Wine Competition).
    For the Kids: A juice box, four kid-loving dogs, whimsical artwork, and plenty of open space to run and play as long as you’re watching them.

    Desert Rose Winery in Hume boasts a western feel complete with horses corraled nearby.
    For Mom and Dad: Snobs need not stop by this laid back cowboy atmosphere, but chocolate lovers are most welcome! Enjoy the Starboard paired with boutique chocolate – unbeatable!
    For the Kids: A dedicated Kiddie Korner in the tasting room has plenty to keep them busy – games, books, and more.

    Grayhaven Winery in Gum Spring is a quiet country retreat that welcomes picnic baskets for family relaxation.
    For Mom and Dad: Small batches of carefully crafted wines and Sangria have received high praise from some wine critics. Mark your calendar for their signature event – South African Food & Wine Festival – September 8-9, 2011.
    For the Kids: Playground, nature trails, horses to admire, and four sweet dogs to greet you.

    Molliver Vineyards & Winery in Nathalie is a place the whole family will enjoy with lots of activities. Have an RV? Stay a while on the 134-acre wilderness property!
    For Mom and Dad: Watch sports on the giant projection wall while sipping.
    For the Kids: The family can enjoy hiking, picnicking, swimming, and fishing at the stream or pond.

    Horse & Hound Festival at Peaks of Otter Winery

    Horse and Hound Wine Festival at Peaks of Otter Winery

    Peaks of Otter Winery in Bedford is a a working farm and orchard with great views and a country life atmosphere.
    For Mom and Dad: Fruit wines (my favorite is Light Pear), the fruit trees, picnic areas, creeks, and ponds, make this a great day trip everyone will enjoy.
    For the Kids: Visit with the barnyard animals for a while.

    Potomac Point Winery in Stafford as a Mediterranean feel to it with a Tuscan courtyard, olive oil bar, and authentic decor.
    For Mom and Dad: The bistro menu, extensive wine shop, tasting, and facility tour will occupy as much time as you allow. The view down onto the vines is quite relaxing. Be sure to ask to see the cave (by appointment)!
    For the Kids: The “Little Buds Room” has plenty to keep them busy, but they would enjoy seeing the cave, too!

    Weston Farm Vineyard & Winery in Louisa began with 10 acres of grapes in 2005 and some guidance for the renowned Gabriele Rausse. 2010 was their grand opening.
    For Mom and Dad: Several small-batch wines to choose from, including a Norton, Cabernet Franc, and a Rosso.
    For the Kids: Interact with the rescue horses, miniature donkeys, and resident French bulldogs Charlie and Suzie.

    More Family-Friendly Wineries
    Wine Events
    Virginia Wine Trails

     

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    Family, Wine | Comments Off

    Beautiful Spring Experiences

    by Casey | Posted on March 20th, 2012

    Happy Spring! While it’s felt like the warm-up season for quite a while now in Virginia, today is the first official day of spring and we’re celebrating with great experiences. Plot your course of action and roll the windows down. These are winding, beautiful, and perfect for a day out of the office … or a Saturday excursion.

    Crabtree Falls Trail

    Crabtree Falls Trail

    Take to the mountains and traverse four scenic byways when you pick up the Nelson Scenic Loop. Begin the Loop at Spruce Creek Gallery and then enjoy the 50 miles that include the Blue Ridge Parkway, Tye River Valley, and Rockfish Valley around Nelson County. In the area are Crabtree Falls and numerous orchards, wineries, and breweries.

    For those who are interested in encountering wildlife, check out one of the regional trails of the Virginia Birding & Wildlife Trail. No doubt, you’ll want to exit the car at some points along the way to stretch your legs and take a quick hike.

    • The Coastal Area features untouched barrier islands, cypress swamps, great stands of pine forest, and bayside salt marshes. 18 loops.
    • The Mountain Area features great vistas, endless forest trails, large inland reservoirs and a taste of the western piedmont. 34 loops.
    • The Piedmont Area features expansive grasslands, large forested tracts, pineland savannahs, several large reservoirs, and an abundance of rich history and culture. 13 loops.
    Tangier Island

    Tangier Island

    A great coastal drive with history, natural areas, and fantastic water views is the Chesapeake Bay Driving Tour. Highlights include the Caledon Natural Area (famous for Bald Eagles), Stratford Hall (Robert E. Lee’s birthplace), and a few places to hop aboard a cruise:

    • If an day cruise sounds delightful, hop aboard a Tangier Island Cruise from Buzzard Point Marina in Reedville. The Cruise departs at 10 a.m. and returns at 4 p.m. $27/adult; $15/child.
    • Other cruise-goers might enjoy a jaunt with Rappahannock River Cruises aboard the Capt. Thomas. Expect to see the Bald Eagle habitat from the water as you make your way to Ingleside Vineyards for a tour, tasting, and lunch. Capt. Thomas departs Tappahannock at 10 a.m. and returns at 4:30 p.m. $27/adult; $15/child. Add lunch for $13/adult and $8/child.

    If the mention of a winery got your attention, Virginia has more than 15 winery trails you can explore. One includes whiskey with the wine, another boasts tremendous Civil War history with the wine, and yet another includes the birthplace of winemaking in Virginia. Check out the wine events calendar to coincide your drive with something fun.

    Families who forego the cruises and avoid the wineries will find their fun when they park the car and enjoy a tour. Don’t yawn – there are great tours crafted especially for you.

    • Polyface Farm in Swoope has an open barn door policy. Arrive anytime Monday through Saturday and take a look around. If you’d like a guided tour, call and reserve your family’s place on the haywagon for a Lunatic Tour (children 13 and older; offered twice each month). They promise it’s “more fun than a theme park roller coaster ride,” and being the country girl that I am, I would tend to agree.
    • Everything you ever wanted to know about Fredericksburg – from all periods of history – can be learned while riding along with the narrated Trolley Tours of Fredericksburg. However, what I look forward to most comes after the tour … Carl’s Frozen Custard.
    • Discover more family fun!

    Whatever you choose to do this spring, do it in Virginia where you can completely connect with the ones you love. Click here to order your free Virginia is for Lovers Travel Guide or call 1-800-Visit-VA.



    Couples, Destinations, Family, Outdoors, Wine | Comments Off

    We’re All Irish on St. Patrick’s Day!

    by Casey | Posted on March 14th, 2012

    ShamROCK N' ROLL in Norfolk

    ShamROCK N' ROLL in Norfolk

    Even if your blood lacks an ounce of Irish descent, you must admit that it’s hard to fight the fun of St. Patrick’s Day!

    For the Family

    Roanoke’s Saint Patrick’s Day Celebration and McDonald’s St. Pat’s Parade is one giant festival the whole family will love. Enjoy pipe bands, the Bonniest Knees and Classiest Lass Contests, inflatables, face painting, the Wells Fargo “Buffalo Bill” Stagecoach, Celtic dancers, cloggers, and lots of great music.

    For the Athletes

    Abingdon plays host to the Shamrock 4-Miler - a brand new run with a great ending – a post-race party with BBQ from Bonefire Smokehouse and beer from Wolf Hills Brewery. Go ahead and dress in your favorite green garb … they’ll be judging.

    Down on the Boardwalk of Virginia Beach this weekend’s highlight is the 40th running of the Yuengling Shamrock Marathon. Included is the marathon, half marathon, 8K, and running events for children, too. Post-race parties will include Murphy’s Irish stew and Yuengling, of course!

    For the Partiers

    Block Party? The merry ol’ section of Norfolk known as Ghent brings you Shamrockin’ in Ghent 2012! Party Friday evening with traditional Irish sounds by local bands, food by Belmont House of Smoke, and various beverages. Wear your green and get your party on.

    In Richmond, Shamrock the Block in Shockoe Bottom is the place to be … with 20,000 of your closest friends! It’s a free event, so enjoy the live music, purchase lots o’ food, and choose from plenty o’ frosty beverages. Noon to 6 p.m.

    In Norfolk, the AT&T ShamROCK N’ ROLL event includes bagpipers, Irish fair, and all things green. Held at TowneBank Fountain Park at the waterfront, this weekend looks to be perfect for it.

    For the Tasters

    Nellysford is celebrating at two wineries! Hill Top Berry Farm and Winery invites you for a wine and food pairing. Wear your green and you’ll take home a free logo glass with your purchase. At Wintergreen Winery, the party is on with Irish music, dancing, mayhap a leprechaun, and of course – wine.

    A buffet of Irish-inspired delights will be available for your grazing pleasure at the Natural Bridge Hotel, as will Virginia micro-brews and Irish beers. Take a walk beneath the natural wonder of the Bridge itself before the festivities kick off at 3:30 p.m. Or, stay the night for $139/couple.

    In Berryville, Veramar Vineyard is breaking out the mischief AND the Blarney Stone. It’s rumored that a leprechaun may be lurking in their parts, too. Expect music, fun, wine, and yummy potato soup.

    Irish dancers kick their toes to traditional music while you sip the fine wines of Potomac Point Winery in Stafford. An Irish menu will be offered all weekend long.

    A special Irish food and wine pairing awaits you at Fox Meadow Winery in Linden. It’s called Pot of Gold Tasting and includes an elite array of gold medal-winning wines.

     

    Find more St. Patrick’s Day events and family fun on the Virginia.org Events Calendar.



    Events, Food and Wine | Comments Off

    500 Places to Enjoy Virginia Wine & Dine Month

    by Casey | Posted on February 29th, 2012

    Love by the Glass: Virginia Wine & Dine Month is a celebration that showcases Virginia wines at more than 500 participating restaurants and wine shops across the Commonwealth. Special wine and food pairings along with wine travel packages make March an ideal time for wine lovers to visit Virginia.

    Virginia Wine and Dine Month

    With more than 200 wineries Virginia ranks fifth in the nation for wineries and grape production, and the world is starting to notice …

    • One of the 10 Best Wine Travel Destinations for 2012 – Wine Enthusiast Magazine, 2012
    • One of the Top Five Up-and-Coming Wine Regions – Travel + Leisure, 2007
    So how can you get in on this wining and dining action? More than 500 opportunities await. From special events, participating restaurants, and the wineries themselves, Virginia wine is yours to be had. Here is a sampling.
    Enjoy Virginia Wine with Your Meal
    Buy Virginia Wine

    Bay Creek Resort & Club

    Wine Events for March

    If you’re not convinced, please see our little video below dedicated to Virginia Wine and Dine Month. Cheers!



    Couples, Food and Wine, Video clips, Wine | 4 Comments

    Winter Wine Warm-Up: The Virginia Wine Expo

    by Casey | Posted on February 21st, 2012

    With right around 200 wineries in Virginia, it would take serious dedication to visit even a third of the tasting rooms for a sample of their best wines. Until you have time to make the rounds, or even if you already have, check out the Virginia Wine Expo this weekend at the Greater Richmond Convention Center.
    Wine Tasting

    More than 400 wines from more than 70 Virginia wineries will be poured this weekend at the Virginia Wine Expo. Your ticket buys you a Riedel® crystal wine glass and allows you to sample around to find the one you love. Gourmet foods from some of Virginia’s most notable chefs will be available for sampling as well.

    Friday, February 24

    • Noon-2 p.m.: Virginia Wine Lovers’ Luncheon at Acacia
    • 4-6 p.m.: Prelude to the Expo Soiree at Bistro 27
    • 5:30-10 p.m.: Walk-Around Grand Tasting at the Greater Richmond Convention Center
    • 9 p.m.-1 a.m.: After Hours at T-Miller’s
    Saturday, February 25
    • Noon-2 p.m.: Late Winter Harvest Luncheon at Lemaire
    • Noon-8 p.m.: Walk-Around Grand Tasting at the Greater Richmond Convention Center
    • 5:30-8:30 p.m.: Virginia Wine and Hors d’oeuvres at Tobacco Company
    • 1-2 p.m.: Seminar – Fresh Southern Favorites & Virginia Wine
    • 2-3 p.m.: Seminar – Your “Pleasure” Senses and Professional Wine Tasting Techniques
    • 3-4 p.m.: Seminar – Why Virginia? The State of Virginia Wine
    • 4-5 p.m.: Seminar – Modern Charcuterie & Virginia Wines
    • 8 p.m.-1 a.m.: After Hours at T-Miller’s
    Sunday, February 26
    • 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m.: Virginia Wine + Brunch at Selba
    • Noon-5 p.m.: Walk-Around Grand Tasting at the Greater Richmond Convention Center
    Important Event Notes
      • There is no re-entry. If you leave the event, you will not be permitted to re-enter.
      • Purchase tickets in advance. To ensure a high-quality event, tickets are limited.
      • Food and beverages are prohibited. Food samples may be available from some vendors and other foods will be available for purchase. Water will be complimentary for cleansing your palate.
      • An ID is required. No one younger than 21 will be permitted to attend Friday or Saturday events.
      • Dress for all events is “smart, chic, or comfortable casual.” No tie required for men; jacket optional. Dark colors are recommended (red wine hides well on dark colors).
      • Please refrain from strong perfumes, colognes, and lotions as their scents disrupt the bouquet of the wines.
      • Coat and wine check will be available.
      • Handicap accessible.
      • No pets.
      • Smokers will be asked to use the designated area.
      • Wine will be available for purchase by the glass and bottle.Virginia Wine Expo Logo



    Couples, Events, Wine | Comments Off