Rappahannock Cellars sits protected in a valley, encircled by mountains, lending a feeling of intimacy to the grounds. Families spill out from picnic tables and couples snuggle on the lawn leading up to the ranch-style winery building.
Inside, one or more members of the Delmar family may be among the black-clad pourers at the tasting bar, where elegant glasses are switched out between whites and reds, and free pours of natural spring water from the property are offered.
The sprawling wine-making family (including all 12 kids) moved their operation from California to Virginia in 1999, bringing their vintage 1906 vines with them. At last count, eleven varieties of grapes were growing on more than 20 acres, producing more than a dozen wines. One of the winery's more unusual bottlings is the Solera, a non vintage wine made from Vidal Blanc in the style of Spanish sherry.
Other wines include Cab Franc, Meritage, Norton, Viognier, Chardonnay, and Seyval, and Petit Verdot and Merlot are in the plans.
In 2017, Rappahannock Cellars added Dida's Distillery to their line-up, offering brandy, vodka and gin -- all made from grapes. At this writing, tastings were by reservation on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
A fantastic old barn next door serves as an event space for private parties. Tasting room reservations are required for tours and groups of 7 or more.
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