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Getting Started Guide: Virginia Wines and Wine Tasting

Getting to know wine and wineries is so much more fun than, say, learning about lockpicking, or html coding, or ornithology. Or golf. Bonfire on the beachLearning about wine is like meeting a new beau at a bonfire on the beach... First, there’s a spark of interest (when, say, a date introduces you to a nice Chardonnay), then a slow-growing flame (when you take your first wine-tasting class and start to notice taste and aroma). The flame explodes into a towering inferno (when you hook up with a Cabernet that rocks your world), and then slowly fades into a comfortable, warm kindling (because you know that wine, unlike that beau you met on the beach, will always be your friend). Here are some resources to help you fan the wine-loving flame in Virginia. We’ll keep adding to this list, so why not bookmark us or sign up for our updates so you don’t miss a single spark? Getting to Know Tasting Rooms Tasting Room Etiquette, Joel Timmins, Virginia Wine Examiner “Ask most any wine geek, novice or professional, how to taste wine and you will get as many answers as there are varietals…” Tasting Room Etiquette, Kathy and Terry Sullivan, Wine Trail Traveler “Many small, boutique wineries are family-run. When visiting a wine tasting room consider yourself a guest. The owners and staff are proud of their facility and want everyone to enjoy their visit…” How to Taste Wine, VisitLoudoun.org A short video featuring popular wine maker Doug Fabbioli of Fabbioli Cellars explaining how to get the most out of your wine tasting. Some Basics on Virginia Wine Virginia: First in Wine, Richard Leahy, Richard Leahy’s Wine Report “The Virginia wine industry today is dynamic and impressive; the second largest in the East behind New York, and the fifth largest nationally with nearly 200 wineries and 2,500 acres of vineyards. The year 2007 was the 400th anniversary of the Jamestown Settlement, and the 40th anniversary of the renaissance of the Virginia wine industry…” Why Drink Local?, Swirl, Sip, Snark “We’re in Northern VA so we do mainly Fauquier and Loudoun wines. There are so many favorite moments… the first that comes to mind is the day we first visited…” Get to Know Your Winemaker, Swirl, Sip, Snark Swirl, Sip, Snark interviews Jefferson Vineyards winemaker Andy Reagan Is Virginia Wine Overpriced?, Frank Morgan, Drink What You Like “Virginia wine is overpriced. I hear this refrain often during discussions with some of my local wine friends when asked why they don’t drink more Virginia wine.” Virginia Wine Varieties (a description of the main grapes and types of wine), VirginiaWine.com “Chardonnay grapes are so malleable, they can be used to make a variety of wines from dry to sparkling…”  Vintage: The Winemakers Year, Silverthorn Films "Vintage: The Winemaker’s Year is a feature length documentary exploring the rapid growth of the wine industry in Virginia and its increasing impact on the state’s cultural, social, and economic landscape..."


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