Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Wine Day: Barboursville Vineyards, Barboursville, VA

Tourist Trap.

That's what they (my sister)
told me.

"Don't expect good wine" she said, "it's mediocre at best and designed for people who aren't really into wine, and just want to stop by a winery, get drunk on the tasting and buy a case of overpriced, undervalued wine."

Or so she thought. 

A bit of back story.  My sister and I always take our mother to a winery (or two...see next week!) on Mothers day.  My sister argued against going to Barboursville, because, she said, they only do mediocre wine that's overpriced for what it is, and it's never really good just okay.

My argument for was it's big, with lots of variety, and our mom only likes sweet, cheap, simple wines. Quite frankly a box of Franzia or Sutter Home White Zen is more often than not exactly what she wants.  For my sister and I, the more complex, the heavier, and drier the better.  Needless to say, we frequently have issues all coming to agreement on which bottle to order at a restaurant!

So finally, my sister relented, and we agreed that we would go (small win!) and that she would pick the second stop of the day which is a smaller, less commercial, and substantially better winery close by.  I agreed, and off we went!

We couldn't have asked for a more perfect day to make the trip over to Charlottesville.  I started off in Northern Virginia, and picked up my parents before heading over the mountain.  US 33 was Gorgeous, and the trip through Shenandoah National Park was stunning.  I had forgotten how beautiful my old stomping grounds were.

We pulled in just before it got busy, and started our tasting.

One thing to be casually aware of when you walk in is that it's not your standard tasting setup.  Rather than one person pouring half a dozen to a dozen wines you move between stations, each of the stations have between 2-5 wines to let you try, and they're set up sort of reverse of industry standard (Dry to sweet whites; light to heavy reds vs. the Barboursville setup of Sweet to dry whites.)

The wine, was substantially better than I had expected.  Still not as good as some of the best, but far better than the Virginia average. In the end, everyone had something they sincerely enjoyed, and even the naysayer ended up buying a couple bottles of wine to take home. 

Overall I was more than impressed.  The only disappointment (and it was a big one!) was they weren't pouring their Octagon!

To reach Barboursville on the web visit  Follow on Twitter @Barboursville

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