Apr 13, 2014

Creek's Edge Winery: first visit to Loudoun's newest winery

We visited Loudoun County's newest winery on their "soft opening" week-end.  It is Creek's Edge Winery, located in Taylorstown, right in between Furnace Mountain and the Catoctin Creek. Creek's Edge Winery is open Wednesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Parking is at the bottom of the hill.  You take a walkway around the building to reach the main entrance.

You could go up the stairs and come in from the deck.
I recommend following the walkway around the to the front to enter through the main entrance.

The Creek's Edge Winery vineyards are directly behind you on the slope of the hill.

As you enter, you find a large, beautiful, and very comfortable tasting room.

We found a couple places at the far end of the tasting bar. Tastings at Creek's Edge Winery are $8 per person.
Just as we started, Geoff and Pam from The World Keeps Spinning blog came into the tasting room with their two year old daughter. We tasted several wines with them, including a few not on the tasting sheet. These are remarkable wines for a brand new winery. My wife and I especially liked the 2011 Pinot Gris and the 2011 Cabernet Franc. I really liked the 2011 Chambourcin and the 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon.  Dana Durden told us that Ben Renshaw had been making their wines and that they had a new winemaker starting.

After our tasting I took a look around, including climbing the spiral staircase in the "silo" to the future VIP room. Dana also mentioned the upstairs could be used as space for the bridal party before a wedding.

Creek's Edge Winery has a great outdoor deck.

We really liked Creek's Edge Winery. They have a large, inviting tasting room.  They have a large outdoor deck. They are making quality, mostly estate wines.  They own a producing vineyard and have a great view.

Creeks Edge Winery
13068 Taylorstown Road (Future 41255 Annas Lane) (The Village of Taylorstown)
Lovettsville, VA, 20180

Apr 10, 2014

A Unique Va Wine Experience- Narmada

After our visit to visit Quievremont we decided to stop by Narmada Winery.  It had been over a year since our last visit to Narmada and we wanted to visit this rather unique and lovely winery again. It had been far too long.

Narmada has one of the prettiest tasting rooms and friendliest staffs in Virginia.  The tasting room is large and tastefully decorated.  The Narmada staff are all first rate.

Narmada has three different flights from which to choose.  Three of us picked the first flight, "The Tasting Room All-Stars."  This tasting flight costs $8 per person and is made up with six of Narmada's better known, off dry and dessert wines, all made from hybrid grapes or hybrid/vinifera blends.  Fred chose the second flight; "Fruity, Fresh, Fun." This flight is also $8.  This flights includes a more classic Virginia winery tasting menu with such classic grapes as Chardonnay, Viognier, and Cabernet Franc.

In Flight #1 we tried:
2011 Dream ($21) a Traminette/Viognier blend. A nice citrusy white.
2010 MOM ($20) This is Narmada's signature wine. It is made from a blend of steel fermented Vidal Blanc and Chardonel. It is a little sweet, so our bottle paired well with the samosas we orderded after our tasting.
2011 Gulabi ($20), a rosé made from Chambourcin, Petit Verdot, and Chardonel. I tasted nice cranberry notes.
2011 Midnight ($21)  A semi-dry Chambourcin aged in French and American oak. Very enjoyable.
2010 Lotus ($21)  This is a sweet dessert wine.  It is a late harvest Vidal Blanc with lovely flavors and aromas.  We were all big fans.
2010 Primita ($25) A Chambourcin infused with raspberry. We usually prefer this red dessert wine over the Lotus.  But not today.

Fred's flight included: 2010 Chardonnay ($22), 2011 Viognier ($23), 2010 Reflection ($21) which is a dry Chambourcin; 2010 Melange ($23) a  blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot; 2011 Cabernet Franc ($27) made from a blend of 75 percent Cabernet Franc with 12 percent Tannat and 12 percent Merlot. Fred liked the wines, so both flights pass our taste tests.

After tasting, we ordered some samosas and a bottle of the Mom wine.  Mom is a blend of Vidal and Chardonel that is racy and a little sweet.  It paired very well with the spicy chutney that came with the samosas.  Fred and Allison had glasses of wine and naan.  What an unique way to end the day in Virginia Wine Country.

Narmada Winery
43 Narmada Lane
Amissville, Virginia 20106
Phone: 540-937-8215

Apr 5, 2014

A River Runs Through It - Quievremont Wine

Following our tastings at Gadino Cellars we made our way about 3 miles west on RT 211 towards Quievremont Wines to try the new wineries wines. Quievremont vineyard is located in Reality Farm.  

Reality Farm was purchased by John and Teri Guevremont in 2006.  They planted the vineyard in 2008 and the first wines were made in 2011. Reality Farm also has a dairy and beef herds, as well as free range chickens and goats.  There is a lovely creek that runs through the property right next to the Quievremont Wines current tasting room. They plan to have a new tasting room open by the end of this year.

John Guevremont
Quievremont Wines is open by appointment only, 7 days/week, 10 am to 7 pm.  It is easy to make an appointment.  John needs to folks to email because when he is out in the vineyards or the rest of the farm he has no cell phone reception.  

Tastings are $7 per person, which is waived with the purchase of any bottle.  Overall, we were impressed with the wines at Quievremont. Theo Smith is their winemaker. All of the wines here are from estate grown grapes. I borrowed extensively from the Quievremont tasting notes because I agreed with most of the descriptions.

The Quievremont 2011 Chardonnay ($24) was an interesting wine. The wine is dry and crisp with citrus fruit. This Chardonnay almost tasted more like a Sauvignon Blanc or a Seyval than a Chardonnay.  2012 VA Governor's Cup Competition Bronze Medal. John told us that 2011 really wasn't a bad year for Quievremont as they were in a dry zone.  He said it would be flooding in Front Royal, yet he was kicking up dust in his vineyards.  He said they finally experienced rain as the last of the white grapes were harvested.

Quievremont 2012 Chardonnay ($24) was very fruit forward (apple) and delicious. John said it would evolve in the bottle.  
The 2012 Chardonnay earned a silver at the VA Governor’s Cup. We purchased a bottle. 

Quievremont 2012 
Rosé ($22).  This is a Loire Valley style Rosé.  It is a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Off dry, with strong strawberry/raspberry flavors, crisp and fruity. This Rosé really hits that spot for a summer wine where that hint of sweetness really makes the wine refreshing.

Quievremont 2011 Merlot ($24).  Hints of dark cherry, plumb and chocolate. Aged 8 months in new French oak. A very nice, fruity, smooth red.

Quievremont  2012 Vin De Maison ($23)  37.5 percent Cabernet Franc, 37.5 percent Merlot and 25 percent Syrah. This wine was aged in new French Oak for 9 months. Fruity at the front, with a smooth finish at the back. A lighter red wine that is easy to drink.
Quievremont 2012 Meritage ($32) is a blend of 44 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 34 percent Merlot and 22 percent Cabernet Franc. It was aged in new French oak for 9 months. This Meritage won a Silver medal at the 2014 VA Governor’s Cup competition.  An impressive wine that I took home.

View from current tasting room
Quievremont Wines was an unexpected treat. They have award winning wines; all made from estate grapes.  Unfortunately, 2013 was a poor harvest year due to all the wildlife eating the grapes. John said he would only be producing a few hundred cases of Cabernet Franc. But there are plenty of fine wines to enjoy from previous vintages.  Make an appointment and try for yourself.  Tell John you read about Quievremont Wines at Wine About Virginia.

67 Reality Farm Lane 
Washington, 22747
Phone: (540) 987-3192

Apr 4, 2014

Commonwealth Quality Alliance Excels at 2014 Virginia Governor’s Cup

I was sent a press release about how the Commonwealth Quality Alliance wines performed at the 2014 Virginia Governor’s Cup competition.  Interesting results. Here it is for your consideration.

Richmond, VA (April 3, 2014) – The Commonwealth Quality Alliance, or CQA, saw 17 of its 49 approved wines take home honors at the 2014 Governor’s Cup in Richmond, Virginia last month. Founded in late 2012 by the Virginia Wineries Association, the CQA is a quality standards initiative that works to reward and promote Virginia-grown wines that best showcase the Virginia wine industry. With nearly 40 percent of CQA-approved wines honored at the 2014 Governor’s Cup, the effectiveness of the CQA and its strict certification process has proven successful.

“The Virginia Wineries Association is extremely proud of the progress the Commonwealth Quality Alliance made this first year,” says Laurie Aldrich, Director of the Virginia Wineries Association. “Each wine honored at the Governor’s Cup is an exemplary illustration of what the Commonwealth has to offer, and thanks to the CQA it will only continue to get better.”

Winning CQA wines at the 2014 Governor’s Cup include:

Cross Keys Vineyards 2011 Meritage – Silver Medal
Flying Fox Vineyard 2011 Trio – Silver Medal
Lake Anna Winery 2012 Chambourcin – Silver Medal
Naked Mountain Winery 2010 Raptor Red – Silver Medal
Naked Mountain Winery 2010 Cabernet Franc – Silver Medal
Naked Mountain Winery 2010 Petit Verdot – Silver Medal
Narmada Winery 2010 Melange – Silver Medal
Narmada Winery 2010 Cabernet Franc Reserve – Silver Medal
Narmada Winery 2011 Petit Verdot – Silver Medal
Narmada Winery 2011 Yash-Vir – Bronze Medal
Quievremont Wines 2012 Meritage – Silver Medal
Rockbridge's 2008 Meritage – Gold Medal
Rosemont of Virginia 2010 Kilravock – Silver Medal
Rosemont of Virginia 2010 Cabernet Franc – Silver Medal
Rosemont of Virginia 2011 Kilravock – Silver Medal
Rosemont of Virginia 2011 Merlot – Bronze Medal
Trump Winery 2009 Blanc de Noir – Silver Medal

The CQA has three objectives: to continuously improve the quality of Virginia wines, to enhance Virginia wines’ competitiveness nationally and internationally, and to increase vineyards’ income and ensure the sustainability of the Virginia wine industry. There is a strict approval process for wines looking to be admitted to the CQA, and each wine must adhere to the following guidelines:
1) must be made of 100% Virginia fruit
2) must have been bottled and produced in Virginia
3) must be tested for quality and purity
Wines that meet these standards are admitted to the CQA with a label adhered to the bottles.

For more information about the Commonwealth Quality Alliance, visit cqawine.org. For more information about the Governor’s Cup, visit virginiawine.org/governors-cup/awards.