Virginia has over 250 wineries. After visiting over 80 of them, it’s been incredible to see the variety of offerings. Somehow, the wineries below tend to be left out of conversation about “must-do” Virginia vineyards. Personally, I think they deserve more credit–their wines are excellent, their views are great, and their people are knowledgeable. If you haven’t yet, be sure to give them a try!
Where: 330 Newtown Rd, Greenwood, VA
Pollak is consistently one of my favorite Virginia wineries, and not just because its logo looks incredibly like a vagina. Somehow though, it manages to fly under the radar in comparison to its neighbors in the Afton area. But with a beautiful tasting room overlooking the Blue Ridge Mountains, this is a spot that shouldn’t be missed. They have consistently excellent wines, including a particularly fantastic Cabernet Sauvignon.
My suggestion? Take advantage of the good wine and a spot on their lakefront patio. Bring a sandwich from nearby Greenwood Grocery and take your time to savor the views.
Where: 6399 Spotswood Trail, Gordonsville, VA
Horton is across the street from Barboursville Vineyards and is the perfect place to finish afterwards. With over 40 wines to choose from, including fruit wines, it can sometimes be overwhelming to narrow down what to try. Fear not though–There are some real gems on the list and their tasting associates are extremely knowledgeable in guiding your taste. Horton’s Petit Manseng won Virginia’s Governor’s Cup and their Sparkling Viognier is good bubbly fun.
Horton is a big part of Virginia wine history. Dennis Horton, its founder, helped bring the Norton grape back from near extinction and popularized Viognier in the state. Yet they also manage to have a lot of fun with the wine they create, which makes for a varied and unique tasting experience.
868 Estate Vineyards
Where: 14001 Harpers Ferry Rd, Purcellville, VA
Fancy some homemade truffles or Virginia-inspired food bites with your wine tasting? Then 868 is the place for you. Come hungry, because there’s a variety of delicious pairings for your wine and a full restaurant with locally sourced food options. If that isn’t enough for you, 868’s winemaker, Carl DiManno, was awarded Winemaker of the Year in 2018 by the Loudoun Wineries Association. Their Altezza, a Nebbiolo-heavy Italian blend, always manages to knock my socks off and is a perfect winter wine.