Oct 18, 2014

"resistance is futile" - visiting Breaux Vineyards again

Strange as it seems now, but our recent visit to Breaux Vineyards this month was our first since April 2013 when we participated in a blind Viognier tasting.  Our last tasting of Breaux wines at the winery was in December 2012.  I am not sure why we had not visited sooner.  We have been out on Harpers Ferry Road since then and we really like Breaux wines and the staff.  We even poured Madeline's Chardonnay at our Virginia wine blind tasting and it won the vote over some other formidable Virginia Chardonnays.  It was way past time to pay a return visit to one of the best known Virginia wineries.

Breaux is finishing the last stages of the construction that Jen and Reagan described to us a couple years ago.  Breaux also has a new winemaker, Heather Munden, formerly at Sonoma's highly regarded St. Francis.
As we entered the re-configured tasting room, we saw Silvia who remembered us from a previous tour with Jen. She took us through the new tasting area construction to where they were pouring some selections for cellar club members.  Silvia obtained approval to let us try these, even though we were not cellar club members (yet).  So we were able to try both the regular tasting of seven wines, plus three cellar club selections.
While we were there we met a friend of some very good Virginia wine blogger friends of ours. Susan is a Breaux cellar club member, as are a rather large number of people we know in the Virginia wine scene. They all have suggested at one time or another we join the Breaux cellar club.

Regular tastings at Breaux are $10 per person.  On the day we visited Breaux the regular tasting included a sharp, grassy 2013 Sauvignon Blanc ($24), a truly superb, aromatic 2013 Viognier ($28), and what I thought to be one of the best examples of Rosé I have ever tried.  Silvia poured a taste of the 2012 and the 2013 Rosé side by side so we could taste the differences.  Carol and I remembered having the 2012 at a Rosé party at Cellar Blog author Allan 's house and really liking it.  But the 2013 Rosé scored much higher for us on this visit. Heather is the winemaker for the 2013 Rosé and her first wine release really bodes well for Breaux.
One of two cellar club tasting areas
On the red side of the regular tasting menu, we tasted the red blend called Equation ($17), the 2012 Marquis de Layfayette (Cabernet Franc) ($32), and the 2007 Meritage ($48).  The 2007 Meritage was the star here, with many flavors and a long finish; but the 2012 Marquis de Layfayette was a very good Cabernet Franc. On the cellar club side, we tried the 2010 Malbec, probably our favorite red of the day, and an interesting blend of Nebbiolo and Barbera called 6 Degrees.

Our final wine tasted was the always popular 2012 Chère Marie ($19), a semi-sweet Vidal Blanc. While we were tasting all these wonderful wines, Carol asked if we were joining the Breaux wine club too.  After the tasting, I had no doubt.  Besides all the previous suggestions to join so we could attend the club member vertical tastings and the much needed expansion of the facility, what really convinced me was sampling that 2013 Rosé. That wine was magnificent and I really look forward to trying the new wines from Heather.  So at the end of the tasting, I asked Silvia to please help us join the Breaux cellar club. A short time later we left Breaux with our introductory wine pack.

If you haven't visited Breaux Vineyards lately, we suggest you stop by.  There are a lot of positive changes happening.  When you visit, please tell them you read about Breaux Vineyards at Wine About Virginia.

Breaux Vineyards 
36888 Breaux Vineyards Lane
Purcellville, Virginia 20132
Phone: (540) 668-6299

Oct 16, 2014

Two Twisted Posts winery has a building now

After our visit and Maggie Malick Wine Caves, we headed south a bit on Harpers Ferry Road to Two Twisted Posts Winery.  They are open the 2nd and 4th weekends of every month from Noon – 4 pm.
The big news here is that building that we reported back last March would be open this past summer is now open.  It is not complete, but the big tent is gone and tastings are in the new building.  They were harvesting Cabernet Franc that Sunday as well.
The tasting menu remains the same as our previous visit last March.  Our favorites this trip were the 2011 Vidal Blanc ($18) and the "Dont Call Me a Cab" ($17).  We were told that the 2012 red wines: the Petit Verdot, the Cabernet Sauvignon, and the Cabernet Franc, should be released in November. All three of these wines won silver medals in the last Governors Cup competition.
New Two Twisted Posts Facility

Still some work to be completed
Two Twisted Posts still has the wonderful 2012 Chardonnay ($33) that won a Virginia Governors Cup gold medal and a place in the 2014 Governors Case.  When you visit, please tell them you read about their winery on Wine About Virginia.

Two Twisted Posts Winery 
12944 Harpers Ferry Rd
Purcellville, 20132

Oct 13, 2014

Return visit to Maggie Malick Wine Caves

We planned to attend an afternoon event at North Gate Vineyard so we decided Sunday morning to visit some places further out to the west in Loudoun County and work our way back to North Gate. We figured Maggie Malick should have released some new wines since our last visit, so Maggie Malick Wine Caves was our first stop.
Tastings are $7 per person at Maggie Malick Wine Caves and the fee is $10 for groups of 8 or more. There were 11 wines on the tasting sheet that day, including 5 new releases.  All of Maggie Malick's wines are estate produced. They grow all their own grapes here and make all their wine at the winery. 
We enjoyed all the wines we tasted, but the "stand-outs" for both of us were the 2013 Petit Manseng ($24) and the 2013 Chardonnay ($20).  We asked about the 2012 Petit Manseng (we tasted a 2011 on our last visit) and were told it sold out in seven weeks. The 2013 Petit Manseng is a very fruity white wine with high acidity that balances the 2 percent residual sugar quite well. The finish is quite long. If you want to know why so many Virginia wine insiders think Petit Manseng is the next big Virginia white wine, visit Maggie Malick Wine Caves to find a good example why.  

Our other favorite stand out was the 2013 Chardonnay ($20).  Only half the wine went through malolactic fermentation; so while it has the creamy, buttery taste, it still is crisp and fruity.  The wine was aged 11 months in neutral oak.

On the red side, I really enjoyed tasting the 2011 Tannat ($23).  I had opened one bottle of this Tannat recently, purchased during our previous visit, and found a smooth, fruity wine with very soft tannins. The 2011 Petit Verdot ($24) has a smoky aroma, but I did not pick that up upon tasting it.  I did taste dark berries and appreciated the long finish.

We  enjoyed our visit to Maggie Malick Wine Caves and think you will too. They are open for tastings on Thursday through Monday, 11:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. When you visit, tell Maggie and Mark that you read about their winery on Wine About Virginia.

12138 Harpers Ferry Rd 
Purcellville, 20132
Phone: 540-905-2921