Wine Tasting at the heart of the Monticello Wine Trail


It all started with some cheese and crackers and some wine one friday night. One of our trainers invited us to his home for dinner. With no destination set for the weekend, he took us wine tasting in the area.


Virginia Grapevine 2009


 Not known to the general public, Virginia also produces wine. Thomas Jefferson tried to grow them in the 1800s but failed. He would have been pleased to know that there are now over a hundred vineyards and wineries in Virginia.


Our first stop was the family owned King Family Vineyards. The vineyard has a stunning ground and backdrop. It seems to be  a popular choice for people as the place was packed when we visited. There was a Polo game going on while we were there. That made the experience more exciting even though we had to content ourselves by watching it from a distance. We were not sure if the event was exclusive or not. It was a first time for all of us to go on a wine tasting tour. The first wine on the list was Viognier (vee-ohn-yay), a white wine. The taste was subtle and became my favorite.  Even though, I liked their Rosé, I learned that I was not a great fan of red wines.  Good: Great setting. Polo games. Bad: Expensive bottles. Crowded in some days.


Kings Family Vineyards 2009 (1)


Kings Family Vineyards 2009 (2)


Kings Family Vineyards 2009 (3)


By the time we arrived at our second winery for the day, we already had this funny look plastered on our flushed faces. Just like the first winery, Pollak Vineyards also has a great landscape. It almost felt like being in Italy. Here, I confirmed to myself that red wines and I are not best buddies.  To temper its strong taste, I nibbled my way to all their crackers. I was not alone in this endeavor, I learned later. Their Durant White – a white wine, however, ranked high at the top of my list. Good: Private.  Cheaper bottles than Kings. Fancy interiors. Great outdoors. Bad: Had to share crackers with my co-trainees after my bowl was emptied fast. lol


Pollak Vineyards (1)


Pollak Vineyards (2)


Pollak Vineyards (3)


As if two wineries and a bad hangover were not enough. One of my co-trainees and I headed to another winery the weekend after. This time with some of her relatives visiting from Virginia Beach. Jefferson Vineyards, in comparison with the two other wineries we previously visited, had a bit of a rustic feel. Their crowd drawer, however, was that apart from the wine tasting they provide a tour of their grounds complete with a guide who explains the basic rudiments of wine making. Good: Friendly. The sommelier who served us even allowed us to share the wine from our glasses to our non-paying companions. Free tours. Bad: Wine tasting area is smaller in comparison. Not much picturesque landscape.


Jefferson Vineyards (1)


Jefferson Vineyards (2)


Jefferson Vineyards (3)


All wineries have a $5 tasting fee with an average of 10 different kinds of wines on their list. All let their guests take home the wine glasses used during the tasting. Coming from someone who is not a wine drinker and a cheap skate at that, it was dollars well spent. Lesson learned: laughter, fun, and wine all make a great combination. Cheers!



King Family Vineyards
6550 Roseland Farm
Crozet, Virginia 22932

Pollak Vineyards
330 Newtown Road
Greenwood, VA 22943

Jefferson Vineyards
1353 Thomas Jefferson Parkway
Charlottesville, VA 22902



Note: I purposely left out any review about the wines for the reason that I have no expert knowledge about them enough to make an objective assessment. 🙂



~ by Happy Sole on May 21, 2010.

4 Responses to “Wine Tasting at the heart of the Monticello Wine Trail”

  1. […] and 200 vineyards in the area, a task that he was not able to achieve during his time. Read here about our wine tasting tour. These existing wineries and vineyards, however, have no direct […]

  2. […] Washington D.C. (about 3 hours), rapids (James River flows through the city itself), wineries (Monticello Wine Trail is not too far away), and theme parks (Busch Gardens and Kings Dominion are within the […]

  3. […] located at milepost 10.7 on the Virginia side of the parkway. It is a great side trip prior to a wine tasting spree in the […]

  4. […] a steep cliff at the side of the road after a wine tasting spree at two wineries (read entry, here.) in the Virginia area. The wine-tasting spree wouldn’t have been as memorable if we […]

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