Nov 27, 2014

Cobbler Mountain Cellars growing up

Following our stop at Linden Vineyards, we decided to go visit Cobbler Mountain Cellars.  The last time we had visited the tasting room was still in the house's cellar. Construction of the new tasting room/winery was just beginning.  The construction is finished and the new facility is in operation.
There are several fire pits out front of new building

You follow a path from the parking lot up the hill to the main customer entrance. As you enter the building a tasting bar is right in front of you.
It turns out Cobbler Mountain offers three separate tastings.  The wine tasting at $10 per person in the front, a Cider Pub Tasting for $5 per person in a room in the back of the building, and a winemaker's cellar tasting for $8 per person.  It is a bit confusing and should be highlighted better, maybe with a large sign.  We just stepped up and started a wine tasting.
Cider Pub at Cobbler Mountain
We probably would have skipped the wine tasting and gone directly to the cider pub if we had known of the separate cider tasting in back. We weren't going to spend another $5 per person for cider tasting, in addition to $10 per person we just paid to taste seven wines after having visited Linden earlier that day. While we did not have the cellar tasting, we did tour the cellar with one of the staff. The cellar has a lot of potential for winemaker's dinners and other events. My pictures don't really do it justice.
Fresh cider on the way!
Antique furniture in cellar
Cellar tasting bar
As usual, the red wines were the high point of the wine tasting at Cobbler Mountain Cellars, although the Vidal Blanc blend was very nice. Their Vidal is blended with some Riesling. The reds were just bottled in September and the best showing of these wines were the 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon ($28) and the 2012 Meritage ($48).  A bottle of that Cabernet Sauvignon came home with us.

View from Cobbler Mountain Cellars entrance
When you visit Cobbler Mountain Cellars tell them you read about them on Wine About Virginia.

Cobbler Mountain Cellars 
5909 Long Fall Lane
Delaplane, 20144
Phone: 540-364-2802

Nov 23, 2014

Back to Linden Vineyards

We hadn't visited Linden Vineyards in a while, so we headed that way after lunch in Front Royal. On the drive in we noticed that Jim and the crew had ripped out a patch of vines. We later found out this had been Cabernet Sauvignon and would be replaced at that spot with Chardonnay.
View from Linden's tasting room porch
Regular tastings at Linden are $7 per person, but waived for case club members and two guests. Weekend access to Linden’s deck and grounds is also limited to those visitors and their guests who have purchased a case of wine within the previous 12 months. A reserve cellar tasting is available for $25. You can sign up when you arrive. Cellar tasting happens hourly from 12 to 4:00 p.m.
The regular tasting included the 2012 Chardonnay ($26), the 2011 Red ($19), the 2011 Claret ($25), the 2010 Petit Verdot ($30), and the 2010 Vidal Riesling ($20). We particularly liked the Chardonnay with classic apple and pear flavors with a hint of vanilla.  

We decided to purchase a glass of the 2012 Hardscrabble Chardonnay and a glass of the 2012 Boisseau Chardonnay to sample these as well.  We tasted our wines out on the deck and enjoyed the views. We loved both, but our favorite was the Hardscrabble Chardonnay.  It was crisp and tasting of minerals.
After finishing our wine we looked around the tasting room.  Linden has remodeled a bit since our last visit. The upstairs is a pleasant place to share wine with friends.
We highly recommend Linden Vineyards.  They make serious wines.  Linden is open Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday 11 a.m.–5 p.m. Closed Thanksgiving Day, Christmas and New Year’s (Dec. 24 through January 2) and Easter Sunday.

Linden Vineyards 
3708 Harrels Corner Rd 
Linden, VA
Phone: 540.364.1997 

Nov 22, 2014

Miller Winery

Miller Winery is a micro winery with a tasting room in downtown Front Royal that has been open for about a year. Their vineyard is located in near Lake Anna, although they source grapes from out of state.

It is a little difficult to find Miller Winery.  You have to pay close attention as you drive in downtown Front Royal.  The winery is located at the back of the Old Schoolhouse Building and across the street from the Warren County Courthouse.  There is limited parking. I parked next to a bail bondsman vehicle in the rear of the building.  The Miller Winery website has parking information posted.

Tastings at Miller Winery are $6 per person.  We tasted 5 wines, three whites and 2 reds.

Miller Winery offered a Chardonnay ($22), a Riesling ($22) and a Seyval Blanc ($22).  The Seyval was our favorite white, in fact it was out favorite wine at Miller Winery.  We were told that 85 percent of the Seyval fruit was from their vineyard near Lake Anna.

On the red side, Miller Winery has an unusual Concord wine named LOL ($16).  It is unusual because it is made totally dry.  The other red is named Hunters Red ($22).  This wine is made from the Noiret grape, a hybrid first developed at Cornell. This red wine is dry and slightly reminiscent of Syrah with some black pepper flavor and decent finish.

Jason Miller told us he has planted Cabernet Franc, Chambourcin, and Merlot at the vineyard.  He also plans to make an apple wine and a sparkling rose wine from the hybrid grape Isabella.

Miller Winery 
23 S. Royal Avenue (rear entrance)
Front Royal, 22630
Phone: 540-692-1411