Granite Heights owners Luke and Toni Kilyk work hard. They hold down serious jobs, and then devote weekends to growing and making wine, with a sideline of making jams from their farm-grown fruits. And when you visit their tasting room, guess who's behind the bar? Yep.
Luke is a serious wine maker, and happy to tell you about his approach, from the high-density planting and frost control measures in the vineyard to the brix and the blending mysteries of the cellar. Their payoff is award after award, including an astounding three gold medals in the 2016 Virginia Governor's Cup
(the 2010 Evening Serenade even made it into the top 12, which is called the Governor's Case and shared with wine writers around the world to promote Virginia wine).
Read more about the early acclaim they grabbed for their notable reds in this nod
from Dave McIntyre of the Washington Post
and this great write-up
from John Hagarty's blog.
On the 225-acre farm, ten are planted with vines at 2,000 per acre, and more on the way. The Kilyk's hope is to continue to increase the percentage of their wine that is estate grown.
The small tasting room feels friendly and intimate, and wine tastings change regularly so visitors can go back and always try something new.
Most of the winery's offerings are red blends, including the well-received Humility, a blend of Merlot, Cab Franc, Petit Verdot and Barbera. Single varietal Petit Mansengs (one sweet, one dry) and a stainless steel Chardonnay were also on offer at this writing, as well as a port-style and Rose'.
Wander beyond the tasting room's high-end rustic ambience to explore the several cozy, clubby rooms for hanging out or private events, upstairs and down.
Kids are welcome, as are dogs, who can enjoy their tastings on the porch. Groups of 7 or more should call in advance to make an appointment, as should limos and buses. Picnics welcome on the lawn. Small private parties available.
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