Lest you continue in your belief that Virginia is rife with apple orchards because the old timers had a constant hankering for an Albemarle Pippin, Castle Hill Cider lays out the truth here
. (Interesting story about cider from Colonial times till now.) The cidery is particular about historical accuracy, even bringing in kvevri (a terracotta amphora) from Georgia (the country) to produce cider the way the ancients (probably) did.
But it's not all history and science at Castle Hill; the big renovated barn of a tasting room/event space is the sort of place that newly-engaged women drool over. Weddings are big business here.
In the tasting room, red leather couches grouped around a wood burning fireplace set an upscale tone, and the cider is just as sophisticated; prepare to be educated and go in with an open mind. This is yeasty, earthy, serious cider, not to be mistaken for your lighter and sweeter Strongbow or Angry Orchard.
The scenery is unbeatable, with Virginia's trademark green hills, white fences, and, in the fall, fiery sugar maples. Castle Hill orchards (at this time) are not quite ready for prime time, so apples are purchased elsewhere in Virginia. Cheese plates with fresh baguettes, the perfect accompaniment, are available, all from local cheeseries.
Kids and pets welcome. Groups of 10 or more should call in advance, and groups of 12 or more should request advance approval for picnics on the grounds. Weddings and private events warmly welcomed, and with all those weddings, the doors sometimes close at 4:00 on Saturdays, so call ahead if needed.
Wheelchair accessible tasting room, but the restroom is out a door and down a small flight of steps.
Has something changed? Email us
updates about this venue!