My family has roots in Virginia, so I have been interested to follow the evolution of the state's wine industry. Winegrowing here began as something of a hobbyist endeavor in the late 1970s; many vintners had little background in wine, and for some, it was not their main business. It has since grown into a thriving industry, with more than 250 wineries contributing around $1.37 billion annually to the state's economy, according to Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe.
Do friends call you “Marilyn Merlot”? Is #RoséAllDay your summertime motto? Then this wine guide is for you. We’d like to thank the first person who suggested drinking fermented grape juice, but that was ages ago. Instead, let’s honor their legacy with sommelier-inspired sojourns to the best wine regions in the United States.
How did a slew of wines from the state of Virginia on the Eastern seaboard of the United States score 90+ points (a handful even got 95+ points) during a recent tasting?
When it came to Virginia wines, it boiled down to three things: Surprise, both about the quality and the diversity of the offerings. Petit Manseng, anyone? An earnest pursuit to find and purchase the wines after the tasting. (Despite Virginia's proximity to Atlanta, Georgia -- where the tasting was held and where we all live -- the availability of Virginia wines here is very limited. This is due, my taster friend Jonathan was told in his research, to limited quantities and distributor bottlenecks.) Pride.