Grape and Grain tours bestow imbibers with a whirlwind six hours to sip and savor a kaleidoscope of diverse beverages. A chauffeur from Prime Transportation begins the day by whisking patrons to a brewery, distillery, and winery, each of which grants samples of their unique brews and vintages while instilling educational tidbits about their creation. At the Mediterranean-style Potomac Point Winery, patrons explore the wine cave and tour the cellar, dining on a bistro lunch and stopping at the olive oil bar to tend jaws creaky from chewing. At Blue and Gray Brewing Company, samples of seasonal beers emerge straight from the tanks to wash down a complimentary dessert, and the tour of family-owned A. Smith Bowman Distillery—a Fredericksburg mainstay since 1934—imparts tricks of the brewing trade that toe the line between tradition and innovation. Discounts on return visits and gift-shop merchandise urge tours to return, and patrons depart with souvenir glasses from each venue that will always remind them not to drink out of the brewer's tank.
Salad Creations chops and tosses more than 20 fresh salads drizzled with a choice of 23 dressings. Instead of licking a pulley or nibbling an inclined plane, guests sprinkle blue cheese, candied pecans, and bacon bits over the wedge salad ($5.99/junior size; $6.99/full size), exactly replicating the savory rains that fell on Ancient Greece. Waves of spinach and feta envelop wild Alaskan salmon ($7.99/junior size; $8.99/full size), and grilled derby chicken cobbs ($7.99/junior size; $8.99/full size) race toward mouths in frilly hats of hard-boiled eggs. Diners can also design their own salads, adorning leaves of romaine or spring mix with more than 40 toss-ins, including sweet mandarin oranges, salty sunflower seeds, spicy jalapeños, or crunchy moon rocks ($7.49 for base plus $2.50 for meat toss-ins). Salad Creations also appeals to your sandwich side in six hearty paninis, including a chicken italiano with fresh basil and mozzarella ($6.99). Each salad can also be rolled into a wrap or folded into an origami giraffe.
Tropical Smoothie Café's wholesome smoothies are filled to the gills with fresh fruit, juices, yogurt, chocolate, nuts, and healthful supplements, minimizing the crushing guilt of dessert consumption to a soft heartbeat emanating from the floorboards. Puréed potions ($4.59−$4.79) such as Pomegranate Plunge (pomegranate, banana, strawberries, cranberry) are stuffed with super fruit, and low-fat options, such as Mango Magic (mango, pineapple, non-fat yogurt), trick gullible taste buds into believing that they are traversing a candy factory full of whipped-cream lollipops. Supercharged smoothies are stocked with a healthy dose of supplements, such as the Kiwi Citrus Green Tea's antioxidant-laden matcha charge or the Muscle Blaster's whey or soy protein. Individual supplements can also be added to any other smoothie ($0.79 extra), boosting its magic points by +10.
Mainstreet Grill and Bar’s 4,500-square-foot interior is charming in its simplicity. A dining area filled with tables and chairs on one side, a bar on the other, and a dozen flat-screen TVs hanging from exposed-brick walls are scattered throughout. The result forms a classic and unpretentious neighborhood hangout, nestled in the heart of the Stafford business district, and fit for families and solo-flying adults alike. The Freddy Award winning staff, bartender, and chef each play a prominent role in making every visit memorable, be it by serving tasty Angus burgers and fish ‘n’ chips, or always being up for a game of hide-and-seek. Patrons can pull a chair up to the full-service bar to munch on fried shrimp while enjoying a local brew, such as Fred Red Ale or Legend Brown Ale.
While they waiting for a meal, guests can work on their swing with Golden Tee Golf, or opt for target practice with a game of darts. A chalkboard displays a week’s worth of special events, ranging from Texas hold’em tournaments and Kids Nights to DJ dance parties and “Single and Ready to Mingle” outings.
Custom Cake Pops grew out of Ashley Skiles’s search for a simple way to treat her coworkers. They expressed such ardor for the moist, decorative bites that she wrote a resignation letter in frosting and devoted herself to baking full time. At her bakery, she prepares orders of a dozen pops in five flavors, including a Southern-style yellow cake compatible with any of her cream-cheese, fudge, or sweet-cream frostings. Ashley thrills in the decoration of her confections to client specifications. After perching them on lollipop sticks, she might arrange them in a vase with a burst of sprinkles or pastel drizzles of icing.