Heart of Virginia Wine Trail honors its home state by guiding guests through six wineries?James River Cellars, Cooper Vineyards, Lake Anna Winery, Weston Vineyards, Mattaponi Winery, and Grayhaven Winery. Although not included with this Groupon, the wine ambassadors proffer passports that award patrons tastings at each of the wineries and encourage them to enjoy the scenic countryside while navigating the path in between. Both regular tastings and special events typically include food pairings and a chance to talk to knowledgeable enophiles.
From 17 rolling acres, 10 varieties of wine grapes are harvested at James River Cellars each year. Those grapes are transformed by resident winemakers into red and white varietals, ranging from the jammy chambourcin to the citrus-forward and floral gew?rztraminer. Visitors can cozy up in the homey tasting room, where they can sip samples of wine at one of the communal table. During warmer months, they can head out to the sun-dappled patio to enjoy the breeze with their drink or, if you're under 21, to hang out and smell the vines.
Staff Size: 50+ people
Average Duration of Services: 4+ hours
Parking: Parking lot
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Brands Used: Dogfish Head, Uinta, and Original Sin Breweries, among others.
Recommended Age Group: Adults
Pro Tip: Bring lawn chairs, sunglasses, and the courage to kick your shoes off and dance.
Most Popular Attraction/Offering: Craft brews for every taste.
I'm a first-timer. How do you get me ready for the experience?
Bring a chair, stay a while, engage others, and bring cash for our vendors so you can taste the different offerings before choosing a favorite. Looking for just the right brew? Engage others for advice.
As the old adage says, "Stuff happens." What training do you and your staff have to stay ahead of the unexpected?
A quick wit, and great humor.
What is the experience customers can expect, and how do you make it special?
Quick service, friendly conversation, great food, vendors, and fun music. We aim to make this a great countryside experience.
With names like Voyager, Rendezvous, Trekker, and Sojourn, the wines at Grayhaven Winery evoke a sense of getting away from it all. But their small-batch vintages aren't the only escape route from the everyday Grayhaven opens up. Visitors on estate tours will find Virginia-made goat cheese and baguettes in the tasting room, a child-friendly playground and nature trail, four resident horses, and three dogs with noses for fine wines. The vineyard also hosts three large events every year: the South African Food & Wine Festival, Blues in the Vineyard, and the St. Clements Wine & Beer Festival.
Barrel Thief satisfies taste buds with a menu dominated by upscale salads and sandwiches that also includes a few heartier entree suggestions. In the arugula salad ($8), salty prosciutto and pickled strawberries lie on a bed of spicy greens, and nine bruschetta options ($5–$10)—including roasted garlic and white bean—are great for distracting most of the destructive hands of the goddess Kali. Fare from the briny deep includes the crab sandwich ($12)—shellfish drizzled in pimento aioli escorted by grilled green tomatoes—and grilled yellowfin tuna ($18). For dessert, tempt teeth with a sweet sonata composed of mixed berries and fresh cream ($6) whipped by Beethoven's ghost.
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