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Dress to Impress: Your Guide to Spring Horse Race Fashion


April 16, 2019 | Ivy Publications

It’s already April, and that means the start of the spring horse race season. Some of our favorite local and regional events are coming up at the end of the month. Depending on the race you attend, you could see anything from sundresses with sandals to cocktail dresses and heels for the women, and button-down shirts with chino shorts to sport coats and ties for the men.

Check out this breakdown of the dress codes, as well as our lists of ensemble must-haves for the upcoming Foxfield Spring Races (April 27 in Charlottesville) and the Virginia Gold Cup (May 4 in The Plains, Virginia) so that you are ready to enjoy a day at the races in proper spring fashion.

The Look for the Ladies
  • Foxfield Spring Races: Preppy and dressy casual. Women often don colorful spring dresses, sandals and sun hats.
  • Virginia Gold Cup: “Afternoon dress.” These are “Sunday Best” dresses often paired with flats and a sun hat.

The Must Haves from The Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop:

  1. A bag to carry necessities like sunscreen and any souvenirs you collect at the races. (The French Backpack.)
  2. Chic accessories to complete your ensemble. (Pink Opal Teardrop Bracelet and Pink Teardrop Earrings by Harriet & Vee.) 
  3. Odes to spring. You will see these intertwined into the outfits of many racegoers. (Rabbit Pin.
  4. A Colorful Scarf. (English Garden Hat Scarf.)
  5. A sun hat and colorful scarf or a fascinator. Not only is this a dress code must, but it will also protect your face from a day in the sun! (The Polo Hat.)
  6. A comfortable sun dress. We recommend a dress that is easy for you to move around in. There is plenty to see at horse races with vendors, tailgating and competition. You want to be able to walk around easily in the grassy areas and to be comfortable standing and sitting down. (Dolce Vila Dress by Effie’s Heart from Verdigris.) 


The Look for the Gents
  • Foxfield Spring Races: Preppy and dressy casual. Men often sport button-down shirts and chino shorts or kakis with sport coats and ties (often bow ties).
  • Virginia Gold Cup: “Afternoon dress.” A slightly more formal event, shorts are not considered appropriate at these races. Men most often wear sport coats with dress shirts and dress pants.

The Must Haves from The Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop:

  1. A light button-down shirt. This will give you a neat, dapper look while keeping you from getting too hot in the April/May sun. (Stone Rose Shirt from Verdigris.) 
  2. A bow tie. These are especially popular at The Foxfield Races, and make for the perfect finishing touch for any formal outfit. (The Prince’s Paisley Blue Ridge Bow Tie.) 
  3. A slim wallet. Carrying a money clip or a pocket wallet will take up less space in your pockets, and force you to only carry the essentials—which also means there is less for you to lose during the festivities. (Gator Money Clip and Ostrich Pocket Wallet by Chuck Pinnell.)
  4. A key fob. If you are driving, this is a great way to keep up with your keys during a day of celebrating. (Barrons-Hunter Suede Tassel Silk.) 
  5. A dependable belt. You want to be comfortable, and a belt will finish your look with a tucked-in shirt. (Hoof Pick Belt by the Wiley Brothers.)

These annual horse races are always a fabulous and social time with stylish outfits, tailgating and, of course, watching the thrilling competition. If you have any questions about the dress codes for the upcoming events, be sure to visit the Foxfield Spring Races and Virginia Gold Cup websites, as both events address dress code in the FAQ portions of their site. If you are planning to tailgate at either event, be sure to visit the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop for chairs, corn hole boards, picnic baskets, linens and more!

We will see you at the races!

 

Photo Credits:

Lead Image by Richard Clay, Courtesy of the Virginia Gold Cup

“For the Ladies” Lifestyle Images: Photos by Jen Fariello | Styling by Taz Greer & R. L. Johnson | Makeup by Rouge 9 | Hair by Top Knot Studio | Jewelry by Ana Cavalheiro Fine Jewelry | Drink by Exchange Events

“For the Gents” Lifestyle Images: Photos by Sera Petras | Styling by Marisa Vrooman of Orpha Events | Sunglasses from Primary Eyecare | Jewelry from Andrew Minton Jewelers | Beverages from The Bitty Bar | Catering from The Local | Desserts from Kilwins & Paradox Pastry | Transportation from Mercedes-Benz of Charlottesville

 

 

Wine & Country celebrates elevated living in the heart of Virginia Wine Country. Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, a semi-annual magazine of Life & Style in Jefferson’s Virginia, and Charlottesville Wine & Country Weddings, an art book celebrating elegant country weddings in Jefferson’s Virginia, are accompanied by the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop in Ivy, VA, a beautiful lifestyle boutique featuring over 40 Virginia artisans with everything from tailgating essentials and Dubarry attire to locally made foods, award-winning Monticello AVA wines as well as craft beverages for your next event. Wine & Country Experiences are now also available and include exclusive tours and hands-on classes with leading professionals in the local farm-to-table and vineyard scenes.

4 Questions You Should Ask Your Investment Manager


April 10, 2019 | Ivy Publications

Choosing a financial advisor is an important decision. Not only do you need to be able to trust this person, but you also want to make sure their qualifications and practices fall in line with your needs and financial goals. So, we asked local Chief Investment Officer and Portfolio Manager for Miller Asset Solutions LLC, Sean Miller, to share a few important questions to ask during your search for a financial manager. Here are his suggestions:

  • Can you please explain your investment strategy in simple terms? Your investment manager’s approach should be both simple to implement and simple to explain to you. Complexity has proven to be problematic in the form of excess leverage, inverse (expensive) investment products and the inelegant use of option strategies.
  • Can you please explain all the fees charged to my investment assets? The industry standard is to charge clients 1% on investment assets. This equates to $1,000 per $100,000 of assets or $10,000 of fees per $1,000,000 of assets. Trading fees, mutual fund management fees and exchange-traded fund management fees should also be added up. Banks are typically charging for the 1% management fee PLUS the mutual fund management fee on that bank’s proprietary mutual fund. Thus, fees can exceed 1.75%-to-2.00% at banks which is simply too high for marginal investment management.
  • Do you act as a fiduciary when managing my investment assets? A fiduciary is simply someone who places your needs above theirs. Registered Investment Advisors, such as me, are legally required to act as fiduciaries at all times. Brokers (also known as Wealth Managers, Vice Presidents, Relationship Managers) are not required to be fiduciaries. You want to know who you are dealing with and understand how their goals align with yours.
  • Who selects and implements the investments for my assets? In some firms, the Relationship Manager or Vice President you may speak to initially is not the one who actually selects and implements (trades) your investment assets. The Portfolio Manager is the title given to folks who invest assets, and they may even be working in another office in another city or state. You want as few people between you and your assets as possible because each person is a cost. Truly efficient management is speaking to the person (the portfolio manager) who actually manages your assets (Registered Investment Advisors like me are portfolio managers as well).

Miller recommends finding investment managers that manage “in the most simple, low-fee, efficient manner possible with an absolute adherence to fiduciary best practices.” For more information on Miller and Miller Asset Solutions, LLC, you can visit his website. You can also find more investment insight from our new Investment Series with Miller in the coming months. 

 

Wine & Country celebrates elevated living in the heart of Virginia Wine Country. Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, a semi-annual magazine of Life & Style in Jefferson’s Virginia, and Charlottesville Wine & Country Weddings, an art book celebrating elegant country weddings in Jefferson’s Virginia, are accompanied by the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop in Ivy, VA, a beautiful lifestyle boutique featuring over 40 Virginia artisans with everything from tailgating essentials and Dubarry attire to locally made foods, award-winning Monticello AVA wines as well as craft beverages for your next event. Wine & Country Experiences are now also available and include exclusive tours and hands-on classes with leading professionals in the local farm-to-table and vineyard scenes.

Seasonal Pairing Ideas: Seafood and Local Craft Beverages


April 2, 2019 | Ivy Publications

For many of us, our summer fare often includes seafood, whether we are visiting one of our favorite beaches on the Atlantic Coast, or are enjoying a locally prepared dish. While most of us know that seafood frequently pairs well with white wines, choosing the right white wine isn’t always easy. So, check out this mussels and wine pairing/beer suggestion from the Tasting Room and Taphouse at Mount Ida Reserve for a little help the next time you are enjoying a local seafood meal or are packing your favorite local wine for a little beach getaway.

For this pairing, Chef Nathan Hatfield, the Executive Chef at the Tasting Room and Taphouse at Mount Ida Reserve, prepared Prince Edward Island Mussels by cooking them in a fragrant red sauce with roasted garlic and onions and scallions. The dish was completed with a toasted baguette.

“We always recommend something lighter and refreshing [when pairing] with one of our From the Sea specials,” said Assistant Manager Catie Richards. She recommends one of three drinks to complete the dish:

  • Light Beer, like the Full Moon Pilsner. Described as “crisp, clean and light,” a light beer like the Pilsner would be a refreshing addition to the plate.
  • Sparkling Wine, like the Bell Mount Blanc De Blanc. This wine’s clementine, fresh apricot, white flowers, and honeysuckle notes pair well with not only mussels, but also other seafoods, like oysters and roasted fish.
  • Chardonnay, like the Bell Mount Chardonnay. The wine’s fewer aromatics allow the mussel’s flavor to be better showcased during the meal.

Love seafood? The Tasting Room and Taphouse at Mount Ida Reserve’s pairing menu includes a “From the Sea” feature with a daily seafood dish. Recent “From the Sea” selections have been fresh oysters on the half shell, pan seared red snapper, and crispy prawns. Seafood lovers should also look out for the upcoming spring and fall oyster festivals at area vineyards!

Want more pairing ideas? Check out these southwestern pairings from Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, Book 5, and keep an eye on the blog for more food and craft beverage posts!

Wine & Country celebrates elevated living in the heart of Virginia Wine Country. Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, a semi-annual magazine of Life & Style in Jefferson’s Virginia, and Charlottesville Wine & Country Weddings, an art book celebrating elegant country weddings in Jefferson’s Virginia, are accompanied by the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop in Ivy, VA, a beautiful lifestyle boutique featuring over 40 Virginia artisans with everything from tailgating essentials and Dubarry attire to locally made foods, award-winning Monticello AVA wines as well as craft beverages for your next event. Wine & Country Experiences are now also available and include exclusive tours and hands-on classes with leading professionals in the local farm-to-table and vineyard scenes.

 

Judging the Best of the Monticello Wine Trail


March 13, 2019 | Ivy Publications

Yesterday, over 58 wines within our local Monticello Wine Trail were judged to establish whose wines will take home one of the Top 6 medals and who will win the prestigious Monticello Cup for the 29th Annual Monticello Wine Trail Wine Competition.

Every year, prior to the beginning of the Monticello Wine Trail Festival, the 33 vineyards that make up the Monticello American Viticultural Area (AVA), a subsidiary of the Jeffersonian Wine Grape Growers Society, are asked to submit their top three wines to the competition. This year, 20 of the wineries submitted wines. Under the direction of the Virginia Wine Academy for the second year in a row, 14 judges came together at Veritas Vineyard & Winery for a day of wine tasting and scoring.

Over the course of the day, Chris Parker and Andrew Hodson, the founders of the Virginia Wine Academy, took the two panels of judges (7 on each panel) through the judging process. In flights of five wines, judges sat quietly and analyzed each varietal placed before them in a blind tasting. The judges were given five minutes to taste and “grade” each wine on a tasting rubric, knowing only whether the wine was a Chardonnay, Cab Franc, Petit Verdot, etc.

The tasting rubric that these judges use is extensive and takes them through the varying steps of tasting a wine—visual, aromatics, taste and overall conclusion. The visual category is where they identify the clarity, intensity and color of each wine. From there, the judges move on to looking at the aromatics, from the condition and level to the aroma (fruit, floral, spice, oak, etc.). Before scoring a wine in its entirety, judges look at its taste—sweetness, acidity, tannin, texture, body and flavor.

Andrew Stover, a sommelier consultant from Washington, D.C. who was invited to be a judge, shared, “The quality has been quite high, even though I’ve only tasted the first 10 wines.” Since becoming certified in 2006, Stover has judged in dozens of competitions around the country, sharing that this was the first “niche” competition of which he has been a part, and that he was impressed by the wines being produced by our boutique industry. “Overall the competition showed a very high level of quality across all of the categories—a level of quality that really shows that Monticello is producing some of the top wines in Virginia in my opinion. Because it is a very small group of wineries, the quality is overall higher than in other state wide competitions I have judged in other states (not Virginia),” said Stover. When asked what stood out for him during the competition, he noted that “The skin-contact Viogniers were very distinctive.”

Once both panels of judges scored all 58 wines, they re-judged those that made the top 40%, which comprises those that scored the highest in three categories: balanced, complexity and drinkability.

On April 29, the seven-day festival, presented by Mercedes-Benz of Charlottesville, will kick off with the Monticello Cup Awards at Vault Virginia, when the winning wines will be announced to the public. From April 30–May 2, a series of collaborative dinners will be hosted by local restaurants and wineries, followed by the 3rd Annual Rose Lunch, winery tours and tastings, and a Spirited Wine Trail Reception, all on May 3. The popular Grand Tasting at the Sprint Pavilion, on May 4, will feature more than 25 local wineries and live entertainment, and is always a great opportunity for wine enthusiasts to sample some of their favorite varietals. Concluding the festival will be the 4th Annual Sparkling Brunch at Veritas Vineyard & Winery. For all event details and locations, click here.

A big thanks to this year’s talented judging panel, and we can’t wait to hear who was chosen for the 2019 Monticello Cup Award!

2019 Judges:

Whitney Berry
Beth Chan
Robert Harllee
Megan Hereford
Ryder Kenerson
Richard Leahy
Priscilla Martin
Jeff Ottaviano
Lindsey Parris
Mike Potasnik
Justin Ross
Andrew Stover
Erica Vorhauer
Neal Wavra

Wine & Country celebrates elevated living in the heart of Virginia Wine Country. Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, a semi-annual magazine of Life & Style in Jefferson’s Virginia, and Charlottesville Wine & Country Weddings, an art book celebrating elegant country weddings in Jefferson’s Virginia, are accompanied by the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop in Ivy, VA, a beautiful lifestyle boutique featuring over 40 Virginia artisans with everything from tailgating essentials and Dubarry attire to locally made foods, award-winning Monticello AVA wines as well as craft beverages for your next event. Wine & Country Experiences are now also available and include exclusive tours and hands-on classes with leading professionals in the local farm-to-table and vineyard scenes.

Mardi Gras for a Cause


March 4, 2019 | Ivy Publications

Over the weekend, Mardi Gras was celebrated in fabulous fashion in Downtown Charlottesville to benefit nonprofit Wigs For Kids. Owner of local Alternative Hair Solutions Jean Brickwedde hosted the party to raise funds for this great organization. Through her business, Brickwedde (seen below in top left image, standing on far right) works with children and adults suffering from hair loss from a variety of conditions, including cancer. 

The fun affair was thoroughly enjoyed by all and featured food by The Catering Outfit, dancing, a photo booth and a silent auction with an array of terrific items generously donated by local businesses, including us at Charlottesville Wine & Country Living. We were proud to participate!

Brickwedde has been a hairdresser in Charlottesville for over 25 years. While she still works with her regular clientele, she has also taken on the mission of specializing in services for those suffering from hair loss because of the great need. While serving clients who are terminally ill, she is able to provide a service that brings them joy in their last days.

In her endeavor to help those suffering from hair loss, Brickwedde has been especially moved to work with children through Wigs For Kids. She was touched from the outpouring of community support for this special nonprofit during her Mardi Gras party over the weekend. You can learn more about Wigs For Kids here. And, you can check out Brickwedde’s important work through Alternative Hair Solutions here.

 

 

 

Wine & Country celebrates elevated living in the heart of Virginia Wine Country. Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, a semi-annual magazine of Life & Style in Jefferson’s Virginia, and Charlottesville Wine & Country Weddings, an art book celebrating elegant country weddings in Jefferson’s Virginia, are accompanied by the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop in Ivy, VA, a beautiful lifestyle boutique featuring over 40 Virginia artisans with everything from tailgating essentials and Dubarry attire to locally made foods, award-winning Monticello AVA wines as well as craft beverages for your next event. Wine & Country Experiences are now also available and include exclusive tours and hands-on classes with leading professionals in the local farm-to-table and vineyard scenes.

Monticello Wine Trail Takes 2019 Cup and Multiple Golds


February 27, 2019 | Ivy Publications

Last night, the 2019 Annual Virginia Governor’s Cup Gala was held at Richmond’s Main Street Station. After 102 wineries submitted more than 500 wines, an esteemed panel of 18 judges selected 68 Gold Medal winning wines to be celebrated at this year’s gala. Locals, Afton Mountain Vineyards, Barboursville Vineyards, DelFosse Vineyards and Winery, Early Mountain Vineyards, Horton Vineyards, Jefferson Vineyards, Keswick Vineyards, King Family Vineyards, Trump Winery, Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards, Brix & Columns Vineyards and Virginia Wineworks all made the prestigious list, showcasing the true talent coming out of our local wine region.

Twelve of these Gold Medal winning wines were selected for the 2019 Governor’s Case after outscoring all the other entrants on appearance, aroma, flavor, overall quality and commercial suitability. Seven of the wines selected for the case were from our very own region, including Barboursville Vineyards’ 2017 Vermentino Reserve, Early Mountain Vineyards’ 2016 Eluvium, Horton Vineyards’ 2016 Petit Manseng and King Family Vineyards’ 2016 Mountain Plains and 2016 Meritage.

During the awards presentation, a video was shown outlining the process of the judging, including interviews with a handful of judges like local Sommelier Erin Scala and highly noted wine authority from London, Steven Spurrier, who in the video compared Virginia’s wine region to that of Europe, and which elicited an excited and thunderous applause from the crowd. After announcing the highly regarded Governor’s Cup Case, Governor Ralph Northam awarded the 2019 Governor’s Cup to local Horton Vineyards for their 2016 Petit Manseng. Not only was the Petit Manseng one of a few select white wines to ever win the cup, but also was the first Petit Manseng to ever receive the award.

Horton’s win was particularly touching after the passing of the vineyards’ founder and winemaker Dennis Horton last June, and it shows the vineyards’ and Horton family’s continuation of Dennis’ pioneering legacy and passion for winemaking. Their second Governor’s Cup, the Horton family also won the cup in 1993 for their 1990 Cabernet Sauvignon, which was produced from the vineyards’ first crop and crafted at Montdomaine Cellars. Horton’s wines have also gained regional and national recognition over the years, including the awarding of the Gordon Murchie Lifetime Achievement Award to Dennis at the Virginia Governor’s Cup in 2011, and more recently, the showcasing of Horton Vineyards at a Smithsonian Winemakers’ Dinner. Dennis’ wife Sharon, daughter Shannon and granddaughter Caitlin, who are now continuing the family business, were all present to accept and celebrate the award. During her acceptance speech alongside longtime business partner Joan Bieda, Sharon Horton credited the vineyards’ win to her hardworking vineyard team, including Vineyard Foreman Tony Baeza Cruz who has been with Horton for 20 years.

Throughout the evening, Shannon poured some of their vineyards’ award-winning wine for gala attendees. In a tearful moment, she expressed how proud her father would have been of the prestigious recognition for their work from the Virginia Wineries Association. The winning wine is 100% Petit Manseng and characterized as having sweet tropical fruits, wiped clean by a fierce blaze of blinding acidity—a beautiful, sumptuous, golden wine.

Horton Vineyards was featured in the recent edition of Charlottesville Wine & Country Living. Learn more about Horton’s history in Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, Book Seven.

That evening, the talented members of our local wine industry proved once again how much our region has to offer wine connoisseurs around the world. The innovative and creative spirit that drives the Monticello Wine Trail continues to advance the industry and its wine production, impressing wine lovers along the way. We would like to sincerely congratulate Horton Vineyards on their Governor’s Cup win, as well as all of the other vineyards who highlighted our region with gold medals and for being selected for the Governor’s Case. We cannot wait to try all of the award-winning wines and to see all that these talented people have in store for our wine country!

Below, top left, Winemaker Luca Paschina of Barboursville Vineyards congratulates neighbor and Horton Vineyards’ Co-Founder and Viticulturist Sharon Horton. Below, right, gala attendees are able to try some of the spectacular wines from this year’s Governor’s Case, including Early Mountain Vineyards’ 2016 Eluvium. Below, bottom left, the team at Brix & Columns Vineyards celebrates their Gold Medal winning wine. Congratulations to all from your biggest fans here at Charlottesville Wine & Country Living!

 

 

Wine & Country celebrates elevated living in the heart of Virginia Wine Country. Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, a semi-annual magazine of Life & Style in Jefferson’s Virginia, and Charlottesville Wine & Country Weddings, an art book celebrating elegant country weddings in Jefferson’s Virginia, are accompanied by the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop in Ivy, VA, a beautiful lifestyle boutique featuring over 40 Virginia artisans with everything from tailgating essentials and Dubarry attire to locally made foods, award-winning Monticello AVA wines as well as craft beverages for your next event. Wine & Country Experiences are now also available and include exclusive tours and hands-on classes with leading professionals in the local farm-to-table and vineyard scenes.

 

Wine and Calligraphy: 5 Tips for Learning the Craft


February 21, 2019 | Ivy Publications
There has always been something so romantic and timeless about the handwritten note. Whether you are writing “thank you” notes, sending invitations or perhaps creating name cards for your next dinner party, having beautiful script can elevate both your versatility and entertaining artistry. So, when we heard Early Mountain Vineyards was hosting a calligraphy workshop with Jen Maton of local If So Inklined, it is safe to say we were pretty excited. Ahead of the class, we asked Maton to share a few of her tips for getting started in the beautiful art of calligraphy.

  1. Take a deep breathe and relax. A glass of wine helps with that!
  2. Remember that when you press down on the pen, you will create thick lines. And when you lift up, you will create thin lines. Another way to put it is: the upstroke = thin, and the downstroke = thick.
  3. Use only high quality tools and materials. A little extra money spent goes a lot further. Cheap pens will result in frustration. The upcoming class teaches what different tools you can use to achieve modern brush lettering and where to buy them.
  4. Practice makes perfect! Practice sheets are the key to success.
  5. Have fun! The upcoming class is structured to teach you brush lettering in a low key (stress-free way).

The Modern Brush Pen Calligraphy class with If So Inklined will be this Sunday, from 1–3pm at Early Mountain Vineyards. Tickets can be purchased here. You can learn more about Maton and If So Inklined by visiting her website here and seeing her in Charlottesville Wine & Country Weddings, Volume 2.

 

Lead Images by Rachel May Photography

Photo of Jen Maton by Rachel May Photography

Photos of calligraphy course booklets courtesy of If So Inklined

 

 

Wine & Country celebrates elevated living in the heart of Virginia Wine Country. Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, a semi-annual magazine of Life & Style in Jefferson’s Virginia, and Charlottesville Wine & Country Weddings, an art book celebrating elegant country weddings in Jefferson’s Virginia, are accompanied by the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop in Ivy, VA, a beautiful lifestyle boutique featuring over 40 Virginia artisans with everything from tailgating essentials and Dubarry attire to locally made foods, award-winning Monticello AVA wines as well as craft beverages for your next event. Wine & Country Experiences are now also available and include exclusive tours and hands-on classes with leading professionals in the local farm-to-table and vineyard scenes.

 

Cheers to the Virginia Wine Expo


February 20, 2019 | Ivy Publications

Calling all of our fellow wine lovers! The Annual Virginia Wine Expo is February 26–March 3! This six-day event in nearby Richmond highlights not only Virginia’s premier wines, but also the best in state and national spirits, cider and cuisine with special dinners, brunches, seminars and tasting events. The expo’s signature events will be held at the beautiful Main Street Station, while other foodie and pairing events will take place at local restaurants and venues, giving attendees a chance to explore the city. We love attending this event each year and seeing our talented local vineyards, craft brewers, distillers and cideries showcased! A few popular locals you can look for at this year’s event include Barboursville Vineyards, Bold Rock Hard CiderCastle Hill Cider, CrossKeys Vineyards, Early Mountain VineyardsHorton Vineyards, and Veritas Vineyard & Winery. Here is a little round up of what you can expect at this year’s expo.

©2018 Scott K. Brown Photography, Inc.

Tuesday through Friday, attendees can enjoy a plethora of foodie and craft beverage events at various locations around Richmond. Many of our local vineyards will be included in wine-paired dinners, including the Buckhead’s Chop House Signature Wine Dinner, which will include Barboursville Vineyards‘ Malvaxia Reserve, on Tuesday, February 26, and Virginia’s Past, Present & Future Signature Wine Dinner at Acacia Mid-Town, which will include a 2017 Early Mountain Vineyards Rose, on Thursday, February 28. You can browse the full schedule of events here.

Love spirits and/or craft brews? Be sure to check out the SMOKED! event on Friday, March 1. This tasting event will feature food from at least 14 different barbecue restaurants, as well as craft beers and ciders, over 50 different whiskeys, and of course… wine.

©2018 Scott K. Brown Photography, Inc.

Saturday, March 2, is the expo’s most packed day with the popular Walk-Around Grand Tasting event, seminars and other experiences, like a special vertical tasting with local Keswick Vineyards. The Walk-Around Grand Tastings (one in the afternoon and one in the evening) will include over 10 of our local vineyards, as well as two local cideries and distilleries. Plus, we will be in attendance, sharing our most recent issue of Charlottesville Wine & Country Living!

©2018 Scott K. Brown Photography, Inc.

The expo will conclude on Sunday, March 3, with a sparkling brunch, wine seminar and Walk-Around Grand Tasting. Whether you are a foodie, wine or craft beverage lover, or love all three, there will be plenty to enjoy and explore during this year’s Virginia Wine Expo! Each year, the expo includes more exciting events, and we cannot wait to see all that the 2019 expo has in store for participants. We hope to see you there!

If you need to brush up on your wine-tasting skills before the Virginia Wine Expo, be sure to also check out our recent blog post with Valley Road Vineyards about proper wine tasting technique.

 

All photos: ©2018 Scott K. Brown Photography, Inc., Courtesy of the Virginia Wine Expo

 

 

Wine & Country celebrates elevated living in the heart of Virginia Wine Country. Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, a semi-annual magazine of Life & Style in Jefferson’s Virginia, and Charlottesville Wine & Country Weddings, an art book celebrating elegant country weddings in Jefferson’s Virginia, are accompanied by the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop in Ivy, VA, a beautiful lifestyle boutique featuring over 40 Virginia artisans with everything from tailgating essentials and Dubarry attire to locally made foods, award-winning Monticello AVA wines as well as craft beverages for your next event. Wine & Country Experiences are now also available and include exclusive tours and hands-on classes with leading professionals in the local farm-to-table and vineyard scenes.

Wine Tasting 101


February 13, 2019 | Ivy Publications

With over 40 local wineries to visit for a tasting, learning to expand your palate has never been so easy—or so pleasurable. Whatever you desire—flowery, fruity, smoky or light—you are sure to find the perfect wine. However, when it comes to wine tastings, the experience should involve more than just your taste buds. We asked Stan Joynes, owner and CEO of local Valley Road Vineyards, to share some tips on how to properly taste wine. Joynes recommends the “5 S’s” of wine tasting—Seeing, Swirling, Sniffing, Sipping and Savoring.

Joynes’ breakdown of the “5 S’s:

  • See the Wine.
    Taste wine in a room that is well-lit, and if you can, hold the wine up to a white background to examine the color and clarity.
    Tip:
    The intensity of the color will hint to how the wine is likely to taste, and, generally, depth of color will signal intensity of flavor.
  • Swirl the Wine.
    Swirling the wine in your glass helps release the hundreds of aroma compounds that wine contains. They are so small that they float on evaporating alcohol into our noses.
    Tip: The easiest way to start swirling is to place your thumb and forefinger at the base of a stemmed wine glass while it’s sitting on a flat surface. Then, while gripping the base, move the glass in small circles. As you become more adept, try swirling without a hard surface under the glass.
  • Sniff the Wine.
    Smell is the principal sense used in wine tasting, so sniffing the wine before the initial sip is essential. The “bouquet” of a wine is the total aromatic experience it produces, and assessing a wine’s bouquet can reveal not only its strengths but also its faults, such as oxidation due to age or cork taint. Experiencing the wine’s bouquet assists you in anticipating the wine’s flavors. 
  • Sip the Wine.
    Thoroughly tasting a wine requires recognizing its full array of taste and mouthfeel attributes which involves the combination of the wine’s textures, flavors, weight and overall “structure.” To get the most out of your tasting, start by holding a sip for a few seconds just inside the front of your mouth. With lips pursed, draw in a breath and let the oxygen pass slowly over the wine. The aromatics will be excited by the body heat inside the mouth and will be transferred to your olfactory receptor site.
    Tip: To get the fullest experience of the wine’s attributes, take a larger sip and let it flow into the whole of your mouth, coating the tongue.
  • Savor the Wine.
    The “finish” refers to the sensation you get from swallowing the wine, and it is defined principally by the length of time the wine taste stays with you after you swallow. The finish sometimes provides a sensation noticeably different from the taste you got on your palate. Items to look for include an alcohol taste, which is not desirable, and tastes that dominate in a way that renders the wine unbalanced. 

Ready to put your wine tasting skills to the test? Check out Valley Road Vineyards’ Blind Tasting Event on February 16!

 

Lead Image: By Skip Rowland

Second Image: By Skip Rowland

Third Image: Courtesy of Valley Road Vineyards

Wine Tasting Notes: By Stan Joynes

 

 

Wine & Country celebrates elevated living in the heart of Virginia Wine Country. Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, a semi-annual magazine of Life & Style in Jefferson’s Virginia, and Charlottesville Wine & Country Weddings, an art book celebrating elegant country weddings in Jefferson’s Virginia, are accompanied by the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop in Ivy, VA, a beautiful lifestyle boutique featuring over 40 Virginia artisans with everything from tailgating essentials and Dubarry attire to locally made foods, award-winning Monticello AVA wines as well as craft beverages for your next event. Wine & Country Experiences are now also available and include exclusive tours and hands-on classes with leading professionals in the local farm-to-table and vineyard scenes.

Three Styles to Complete your Valentines Day Look


February 8, 2019 | Ivy Publications

Valentine’s Day is almost here, and that means it is time to find the perfect outfit. While there are always occasions calling for a classic look, some celebrations call for an outfit a little more casual. Here are a few of our favorite looks to rock this holiday, no matter if you are strolling through a vineyard or trying out a chic new restaurant.

Classic: As the name suggests, you cannot go wrong with this romantic look. Break out a chic red number like this Joseph Ribkoff dress for those special plans that might include an intimate candlelit dinner or an evening at the theater.

Fun & Flirty: This look is great for transitioning from daytime to evening plans and is appropriate for an array of Valentine’s Day activities, no matter whether you are enjoying a wine tasting or heading to a new restaurant. Below, these Joseph Ribkoff dresses are both figure-flattering and fun with their bold prints.

Casual & Feminine: Even when your plans call for something a little more casual, you can always keep it feminine and trendy. This look is perfect for a daytime activity like a vineyard tour, catching a matinee or visiting a favorite art gallery. The Joseph Ribkoff jumpsuit and chic jacket are perfect for an afternoon on the town.

Ready to pick out your own Valentine’s Day look? You can shop for these outfits and more at Verdigris on the Charlottesville Downtown Mall. You can also find more style inspiration in the CHO•ho Style section of our magazine, as well as the perfect accessories at the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop!

 

Lead Image: Photo by Jen Fariello | Clothing by Verdigris

 

 

Wine & Country celebrates elevated living in the heart of Virginia Wine Country. Charlottesville Wine & Country Living, a semi-annual magazine of Life & Style in Jefferson’s Virginia, and Charlottesville Wine & Country Weddings, an art book celebrating elegant country weddings in Jefferson’s Virginia, are accompanied by the Charlottesville Wine & Country Shop in Ivy, VA, a beautiful lifestyle boutique featuring over 40 Virginia artisans with everything from tailgating essentials and Dubarry attire to locally made foods, award-winning Monticello AVA wines as well as craft beverages for your next event. Wine & Country Experiences are now also available and include exclusive tours and hands-on classes with leading professionals in the local farm-to-table and vineyard scenes.