I consider fall to be wine-tasting season. I'm not sure if wine-tasting season exists, but now it does. It's a trend, I swear. And it's so fetch, you guys.
In all seriousness, there is no better time to sip vino in the beautiful outdoors than when the heat wave of summer lifts from the D.C. metropolitan area and the leaves start turning the colors of fire and sunset. So to get you revved up for some local wine enjoyment, I wanted to share a few snippets of a mother-daughter day trip I took the other weekend. We visited Willowcroft Winery as well as Casanel Vineyards, then finished our day with dinner at Tuscarora Mill (also called "Tuskies"). I couldn't leave without a bottle of Willowcroft's 2011 Reisling and my Mom went home with a bottle of their 2010 Chambourcin. The Reisling is much less sweet than others in its class (only 1% sugar), but it still has that fruity bite that I dig. The Chambourcin was a really smooth red that would please any crowd, methinks. Last but not least, we had a really interesting (and good) 2011 Norton Rose from Casanel-- it's darker because of the type of grapes they use, and it would actually be perfect for a sangria.
My favorite part of the two wineries, though, were the Wino Dinos. You'll have to visit the dinos in person to learn more about their mysterious ways, but let's just say they are the greatest thing ever.
Dino antics aside, the icing on the cake was definitely Tuscararoa Mill. I tried their classic shrimp and grits, which was so rich and delicious I had to take it home and enjoy it as leftovers as well. It did not disappoint the second time around, which is unsurprising since local favorite "Tuskies" builds their menu using fresh ingredients from several dozen local growers, cheese makers, wineries, farmers and livestock producers. Lovin' it, Loudon County-- you work that localism! Also, if you go to Tuskies, I recommend you ask for a Lost Rhino Sweet Spot, a rockin' VA beer that went perfectly with my meal.
The dress is (again! I know!) from Secondi. This indigo-hued maxi rounds out my summer haul, which includes the linen maxi, the crochet top and the trippy yoga shorts. Clearly I am addicted to Secondi, but I'm glad because it has helped me stay on target for the style challenge I made for myself in June: My Fair Collection. Since starting Fair Vanity, I have only purchased clothing that is consigned and/or made in the USA. That's better than 2 out of 3, that is 100%! Whoomp, whoomp, whoomp!
Also, the dress was not just an eco decision, but a strategic decision. For me, the best colors to wear to a wine tasting are dark blues, maroons, purples... basically any color that could easily hide a wine stain. Hopefully I can remember that for the annual Labor Day Wine Fest in Long Island that I am about to embark on with some friends, plus we'll see how New York wines stack up against Virginia.
Below is my beautiful, fun, and awesome Mom and me at Willowcroft. She gave me that green straw bag (also worn here) last year for my birthday, you know. She has great taste, doesn't she? Thanks for taking me wine tasting with you, Mom!