One thing Zach and I love to do is pair a wine trip with a nice hike. Since we spend a lot of time in Charlottesville this is an easy thing to do! One hike we had been dying to do was Old Rag. Old Rag is a nine mile hike that is so much fun and also challenging! You have to start early because it draws a big crowd. We had done a lot of research and wanted to hike it during the week since the weekend can be quite busy. We designed this one night trip around the hike and location.
Early Mountain Vineyard – This is probably one of my top five favorite wineries that I have visited in Virginia! I can’t rave enough about their presentation and logo. It is simple, clean and modern. Their tasting room is beautiful with wonderful chalk art behind the bar. Another amazing thing about Early Mountain are their flights. They feature other local VA wineries so you can sample different wines all in one spot. Their tasting room also serves a full menu of delicious food which is spectacular. The view is remarkable and makes you want to sit outside for hours. They had so many fabulous wines, I enjoyed their Rose along with their Pinot Gris. I strongly suggest you visit!
DuCard Vineyard – I had to call ahead and set up a tasting since this was during the week not during normal business hours. They were very accommodating and I was so happy we got to visit! We brought home a bottle of their Veni, Vidi, Vino! Viognier. It was refreshing and tropical! I can’t wait to go back and be able to enjoy their view and outdoor seating.
Sharp Rock Vineyard and Bed and Breakfast – Sharp Rock was such a gem. We stayed in The Carriage house and the accommodations were lovely. Sharp Rock is a small artisan winery that produces small batch wines. We had a informative tasting with the owner and winemaker. The Rose and Sauv Blanc were two of our favorites. We packed a dinner and enjoyed sitting outside on the deck. In the morning breakfast was delivered, hot homemade coffee cake, hard boiled eggs and fresh fruit. It was delicious and the perfect way to fuel up before our hike!
Day 2 – The Hike!
Old Rag – Like I had mentioned, this hike is Shenandoah’s most popular hike. We decided to complete it during a week day and start early before the crowds. It is a nine mile hike that includes rock scrambles. It was definitely hard, fun and a bit scary at times! Make sure you do your research and prepare for this hike. We enjoyed it and can’t wait to complete it again!
There you have it! A wonderful quick adventure. These wineries are so close to the trail head of Old Rag! I strongly suggest the hike along with these fabulous wineries!