Mar 22, 2013

Closer to Home - part II a bit further out

It was a Sunday, and we were off to a late start on the wine trail, we decided to hit some wineries close by that we had not visited in a while. After a quick lunch in Gainesville  we headed over to the Winery at La Grange.  The winery formerly was part of Chris Pearmund's empire but was sold in 2012.  We arrived right after noon to an empty parking lot.  This was a first for us - often in the past it has been hard to find a place to park.  We did note several spaces labeled for wine club members only - another first. We wondered if it was closed but Carol saw lights on so we parked and walked up the steps to the main house. 

When we went inside we were told that the winery now opens at 12:00 PM, at least on Sunday.  We were the only customers present,but staff seemed plentiful.  La Grange has two tastings, a "classic" tasting and a "reserve" tasting, both $10 each.  We chose the classic as it has more whites than the reserve.   We tried nine Virginia wines including a 2010 Viognier ($25), two vintages of Cuvee Blanc 2011-$20, 2012-$22), 2010 Cabernet Franc ($26), 2011 Merlot ($23), 2011 Meritage ($28) and 2010 Tannat ($29).  Our favorite was the dry 2011 Cuvee Blanc.  This wine had a pronounced Traminette taste, but this blend tamed the rose flavor and aroma into a refreshing white blend. 

 
Our pourer for the day was very enthusiastic about their new wine club, and spent more time talking about it than the wines he was pouring. We felt it was an oversell.  The wines are fine, just wish they would leave the wine club sales job for the end of the visit.  We did learn that La Grange is making special wines that will only be available to club members, including some VA/CA blends... wondering why?
 


The Winery at La Grange   
4970 Antioch Road
Haymarket, Virginia 20169

703-753-9360

 
 
We next went over to Pearmund Cellars. Here at least, there were cars in the parking lot, but the tasting room was a bit empty too. There was a regular stream of visitors were heading straight to the barrel room for scheduled barrel tastings ($25). Our server speculated that the lack of customers was due to the weather (snow!) and the fact that most St. Patrick's celebrations had occurred the previous Saturday evening.

Tastings at Pearmund Cellars are $10 per person.  They have 11 wines on the current tasting menu, including two made from Washington state grapes.  We particularly enjoyed the 2010 Old Vine Chardonnay ($23), and the 2012 Riesling ($19).  We purchased those two. The Riesling had pronounced mango and peach flavor. The 2010 Late Harvest Petit  Manseng ($21) was also quite nice. Pearmund was one of our favorites when we were first getting into the Virginia wine scene, and it is nice to know that they still can be counted on for some solid, well crafted wines. The just-released 2010 Merlot had good dark fruit flavor.  The 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon was light but tasty and had a long, dry finish.  The 2010 Ameritage was smooth, but full-bodied.

Pearmund Cellars 6190 Georgetown Rd.
Broad Run, VA 20137

540-347-3475

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