Keswick Hall
May 2013  
 Website  |  Subscribe  |  Advertise  |  Archived Newsletters  |  Contact Us
April 30, 2013

Vol. X, Issue No. 5

Dear Virginia Wine Lover,


It's Wine Festival Month in Virginia with each weekend bringing opportunities to visit interesting venues and sample the ever growing list of unique wines produced in the commonwealth. Editor's Picks for May festivals and special events follow: 


May 4&5

- Montpelier Wine Festival (Orange)

- National Harbor Food & Wine Festival (DC)

May 11

- James River Wine & Music Festival (Lynchburg)

May 18

- Virginia Wine & Craft Festival (Front Royal)

- Ash Lawn-Highland Virginia Wine Fest (Charlottesville)

May 25

- ValleyFest (Massanutten)

- 251st Anniversary of American Wine.

  Philip Carter Winery (Hume)


We hope you enjoy this issue of the Official Virginia Wine Lover. For those attending May wine festivals, Jim Anctil of Sans Soucy Vineyards offers some timely tips for tasters. And, be sure to enter the Keswick Hall Getaway for an opportunity to win a one-night stay for two with dinner and breakfast at this luxurious resort in Virginia wine country. It's the perfect retreat after a weekend of wine "festivaling".


Thank you for your continuing interest in the newsletter and in Virginia wine. Cheers!

Frank C. Britt 
franks signature blue






PS: Make plans to join us at the inaugural James River Wine & Music Festival on May 11 in downtown Lynchburg. Buy your tickets online and SAVE  www.vawinelover.com/festival

- Keswick Hall
- Enter to Win Getaway Package
- Montpelier Wine Festival
- James River Wine & Music Festival
- Virginia Wine & Craft Festival
- Boar's Head Sweepstakes Winner
- Events this Month





May 11, 2013

Downtown Lynchburg 

SAVE 20%

Click Here




 Va Wine Board

Wine Festival & Winery Consulting,
Winery Marketing, Vendor Finder,
Ad Design...
and More!
Like us on Facebook


A Summer Retreat Extraordinaire 
Nestled in the heart of Virginia's wine country, Keswick Hall at Monticello is the perfect summer retreat. The accommodations in the 48-room inn are luxurious. The service is gracious.....and the views of the Blue Ridge Mountains are spectacular.  


Tennis, biking, archery, fly fishing and croquet are just a few of the outdoor activities  available at the 600-acre resort. Guests can relax at The Spa at Keswick Club, by the signature Horizon Pool or on one of the inviting patios.   For those who wish to explore, the region's many vineyards, Jefferson's Monticello and downtown Charlottesville are just minutes away.


Keswick Hall is also home to Fossett's Restaurant, Fossett's Bar and Villa Crawford. Each features regionally inspired dishes prepared with the freshest locally sourced ingredients, many grown in the Chef's Garden on the estate. A robust wine list, available in print or on an iPad, provides the opportunity to explore local flavors and those from around the world.


Visit Keswick Hall this summer and enjoy a unique country estate experience!



701 Club Drive - Keswick, VA 22947







President Madison's Montpelier
Orange County
May 4, 2013

The festival is sponsored by the Orange County Chamber of Commerce and held annually on the spectacular grounds of Montpelier, the home of James Madison, fourth President and father of the Constitution. Madison described Montpelier as "a squirrel's jump from Heaven."   The estate encompasses 2,700 acres of rolling pastures, formal gardens, old-growth forests and breathtaking vistas. It is the perfect place to spend an afternoon relaxing and enjoying Virginia wines.


Some 24 wineries will showcase and pour tastings of their award-winning wines. The two-day festival features distinctive arts and crafts, specialty food vendors and a variety of live musical entertainment.   The "Specialty Hat Contest" is a popular event, attracting an interesting variety of hats. A 3-Pack of Wine is awarded each day to the winners of the most exceptional hats.


Also on tap are special tours of Madison's home which is just a short carriage ride away from the festival setting. Children's activities include free rides in the barrel train, kite making and kite flying contests and aerial demonstrations by Wings over Washington Kite Club.


Montpelier is located on Route 20, four miles southwest of Orange. Festival hours are 11 am to 6 pm on Saturday, May 5, and 11 am to 5 pm on Sunday May 6.

Admission: $15 in advance / $25 at the gate. Ages 13-20 $5. Under 12 Free.


Montpelier Wine Festival

11393 Constitution Hwy

Montpelier Station



Riverfront Park, Lynchburg

May 11, 2013


Lynchburg's scenic Riverfront Park is the setting for the city's first ever all wine event. Twelve wineries will offer attendees the opportunity to taste and purchase a wide variety of wine selections. An upscale adult event, the festival features continuous entertainment throughout the day by popular area musicians, Bigfoot County, Apple Butter and the Paddy D Quartet. Also local and regional foods, arts and crafts and wine related accessories with opportunities for browsing and shopping.


The festival is a unique outdoor spring activity, particularly for those visiting the area for college graduations and families coming together for Mother's Day. It is expected that "wine lovers" will come from across the region, many "discovering' Lynchburg for the first time. As Riverfront Park is in the new Arts and Cultural District, the event will showcase Lynchburg's revitalized downtown as a place of community, bringing together area residents and visitors for an afternoon of wine tasting and music. A rain of shine event as wineries are under the big tent.  


Tasting Tickets are $20 in advance / $25 at the gate; non-Tasting $10 advance / $15 at the gate.  For tickets and information, visit: www.vawinelover.com










2 FREE Tickets

to the first 3 Wine Lovers

to sign up!






The 27th Annual
Virginia Wine & Craft Festival
In Historic Downtown Front Royal, Virginia

May 18, 2013
Join us on Saturday, May 18 from 10 am to 6 pm in historic downtown Front Royal for wine tasting, shopping, live music, and much more. Festival covers more than seven downtown blocks and features tastings from 18 Virginia wineries and continuous musical entertainment.


East coast artists and crafters will display their wares, including fine handmade jewelry, hand painted wine glasses, hand crafted musical instruments, to name just a few. There is pottery, ceramics, clothing, original paintings and antiques on the list of vendors. Not to be outdone by the wineries and crafters, food vendors will be out in full force, with over a dozen to choose from. Several restaurants will also be open during the festival for those who prefer to sit and rest a bit while they eat.


Admission: $20 in advance or $25 at the gate for those who wish to wine taste.

General admission: $2.00 and children 6 and under are Free.

Information and tickets: www.wineandcraftfestival.com


Front Royal-Warren County Chamber of Commerce





By Paul Anctil, Owner and Winemaker
Sans Soucy Vineyards
The variety and quality of wines produced in Virginia is fantastic. There is literally something for everyone. Visiting a winery, touring the facility and sampling the wine is a popular activity all over the state.
Another way to sample Virginia wines is to attend a wine festival. A wonderful synergy continues to evolve between the many Virginia wineries seeking recognition from the wine consuming public and communities wanting to generate revenue from the economic activity and tourism dollars. Virginia festivals are usually organized around atheme that compliments a charity, an organization or a community: Wine and Art, Wine and Music, Wine and History, Wine and Town, etc.
No matter which option is best for you, visiting the winery or attending a festival, experience has led me to observe that many patrons are looking for some kind of guidebook or "etiquette" to help them participate with more confidence. So with that in mind, I would like to suggest the following to guide you when sampling great Virginia wines at some of the awesome venues throughout the state of Virginia.
DO: Ask questions, don't be afraid to ask why the wine is considered, dry, off dry, etc. What does the finish mean? What do we mean by the "nose"? Ask how it was made, most likely the person serving you is an owner, the winemaker, or a family member, all of whom are very proud to discuss the product.
DON'T: Monopolize the server's time. Be cognizant of the size of the crowd and other people's desire to sample. Save those great questions for your visit to the winery. You will get dedicated attention there.
DO: Ask to sample whatever wine you want. Most winetasting is best enjoyed by going from dry to sweet, white to red. But that is just a recommendation.
DON'T: Ask for a larger serving, the law governs that. Ask to combine all the wine samples into one glass. (You are not sampling at that point.) Ask for a second pour unless you are serious about purchasing that wine. However, wineries do sell wine by the glass which is a better way to truly evaluate the wine before buying a bottle to take home.
DO: Ask questions about the descriptors used in describing wine. What is meant by dry or tannic (not the same) Sweet and bitter are tastes, tannic and texture are sensations.
DON'T: Be timid in asking how to differentiate between taste and sensation, and what factors of the grape or winemaking method contributed to those distinctions.
DO: Look at the wine for color, color of borders, swirl to release aromatics, and smell before tasting. Enjoy those delicate phenolics that are released by the swirling. If the server is offering an explanation as to the wines attributes, listen before consuming.
DON'T: Guzzle it down in the flash of a second. That is first indication that you are not there to sample good wine, but simply to get a buzz and consume as much as you can. Neither the winemaker nor the deputy sheriff will appreciate it. Chew gum while sampling wines. And on that subject, don't use one of the wineries quality rackcards in which to wrap your gum to throw away. In a nutshell, gauche!
DO: Feel free to politely say that you don't like the wine. Or, say nothing. You don't need to explain or justify your reasons. I don't enjoy all wines either.
DON'T: Make visceral sounds of disgust, or spit it on the ground, or other dramatic ways of communicating that you don't like the wine. The owner or winemaker probably just served it to you. Think of inviting someone to your house for dinner and what you would think if they used the same rudeness to tell you they didn't like your cooking! Point made.

 May 4:  Vertical Tastings

Philip Carter Winery of  Virginia (Hume)

Tastings of Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc and Cleve from vintages 2008 to 2011. Discuss the influence of each growing season and the hands and minds behind the growing of the grapes and the cellar practices. Reservations.


May 4:  Bordeaux Blend Class

Gray Ghost Vineyards and Winery (Amissville)

Winemaker Al Kellert leads class on the fine nuances of blended wines. Taste each of the components in Ranger Reserve blend...and then experience the final blend.



May 4:  Festival with a Cause

Stanburn Winery (Stuart)

Raising funds for Salem Stompers, Relay for Life team to benefit American Cancer Society. Wine tastings, tours, steak sandwiches, cornhole tournament and live music.


May 4-5:  National Harbor Wine & Food Festival

Potomac River Waterfront (DC)

A summer tradition, with over 150 Virginia and international wines and three stages of live music and smooth jazz. The largest wine festival of its kind in the Metro DC area. For tickets and schedule:


May 4-5:  Barrel Selection Training

The Winery at La Grange (Haymarket)

Tastings on a first come, first serve basis in small groups. Great wines to taste, hors d'oeuvres and finger foods.


May 4-5:  Montpelier Wine Festival

James Madison's Montpelier (Montpelier Station)

Held annually on the spectacular grounds of Montpelier, the festival features 24 Virginia wineries, distinctive arts and crafts, food vendors and children's entertainment and rides.


May 4-5:  Spring Town Point Wine Festival

Town Point Park (Norfolk)

Fastest growing wine festival in Hampton Roads. Two blissful afternoons to sample wide selection of wines. Enjoy gourmet foods and musical performances.


May 5:  Sermon from the Vine

Marterella Winery (Warrenton)

At 11 am on Sunday morning, itinerant vineyard preacher Kim J. Ciftci delivers a scriptural, spiritual message derived from the many Biblical references to wine, grapes, the vineyard, or the processes involved in winemaking. Also May 12 at Pearmund Cellars (Broad Run) and May 19 at Unicorn Winery (Amissville).


May 10:  Friday Night under the Stars

AmRhein's Wine Cellars (Bent Mountain)

Enjoy a special dinner, a bottle of wine and entertainment, all under the stars. Special wine will be selected to pair with 3-course dinner with appetizer. Rain or shine under shelter of covered veranda and tented lawn. Reservations.


May 11:  James River Wine & Music Festival

Riverfront Park (Lynchburg)

Lynchburg's first all-wine festival at scenic Riverfront Park. Come and meet the publisher of the Official Virginia Wine Lover. Taste and buy wine from 12 popular Virginia wineries under the big tent. Continuous live music, variety of foods, arts and crafts. This is an adult event that goes rain or shine. For information and advance tickets:


 May 11:  A Taste of New Kent

New Kent Winery (New Kent)

Spend the day on the grounds of beautiful New Kent Winery with 14 wineries, food vendors, live music, carriage rides and arts & craft vendors.


May 11:  Uncork the Cure Wine Festival

Daleville Town Center (Daleville)

Bring a chair and enjoy the sounds of SOL Revolt and the Fat Daddy Band, local food, artisans and great wine.


May 11:  Wine Festival at Monticello

Monticello (Charlottesville)

An unforgettable evening on the West Lawn celebrating Jefferson's passion for wine.   Wine tastings and sunset tour of Monticello, including the restored vineyards by twilight.


May 11:  Wine and Trotter Festival

Shenandoah County Fairgrounds (Woodstock)

Sample wines from the Shenandoah Valley Wine Trail wineries and experience four thrilling Harness Races. Great music, food and crafters.


May 11:  Wine Growing for Beginners

Mountain Cove Vineyards (Lovingston)

Experienced winegrower takes you from the vineyard through the wine making process. Wine tastings will demonstrate the ultimate results of the work.


May 11:  Riedel Wine Tasting

Fox Meadow Winery (Linden)

Taste four wines, each poured and tasted in different glasses. Coffee and dessert in the wine club room to follow. Participants get four Riedel wine glasses. Reservations.


 May 11:  Outdoor Movie Night

Paradise Springs Winery (Clifton)

The Movie series is back with "A Good Year" showing on the Screen on the Green. Bring a blanket or lawn chair. Bottle and glass sales. Adults only.


May 11-12:  Discover Virginia Food & Wine Festival

Ruckersvelle in Greene County

Spend a day in the Blue Ridge Mountains with some of the finest Virginia wineries, a local micro-brewery, gourmet food vendors, artisan crafters and musicians.


May 11-12:  Bocce-Fest

Three Fox Vineyards (Delaplane) 

The perfect setting for Bocce Ball. Come play with us or with your friends. Free lessons. And then enjoy some fine wine.


May 17:  Wine Camp

Veramar Vineyard (Berryville) 

Three day escape to Virginia wine country includes workshop on wine aroma and blending, viticulture field work and wine tastings. Reservations.


May 17-19:  Spring Wine Festival & Sunset Tour

Mount Vernon Estate & Gardens (Mount Vernon)

Celebrate the history of Virginia wines one the east lawn overlooking the Potomac River. Sample wines from 16 wineries, enjoy live jazz and meet "President Washington". Evening tour of the house and rarely-open basement cellar where the wine was stored.


May 18:  Virginia Wine & Craft Festival

Downtown Front Royal

Tastings from Virginia's finest wineries, east coast artisans and crafters, variety of regional foods from vendors and local restaurants. Children's activities and live entertainment to please everyone's taste.


May 18:  Taste of Greece Wine Event

Doukenie Winery (Loudoun)

Authentic Greek menu, live music, outdoor wine tastings, mounted horse games and children's activities. Tour the vineyard and learn about the importance of terroir.


May 18:  Outdoor Movie Night

Paradise Springs Winery (Clifton)

Continuing the movie series with a showing of "Under the Tuscan Sun" on the Screen on the Green. Bring a blanket or lawn chair. Bottle and glass sales. Adults only.


May 18:  Pamunkey River Wine Festival

Saude Creek Vineyards (Lanexa)

Second annual to include 10 wineries, all day live music, arts and crafts and flavorful foods.


May 18:  Blend Your Own Seminar

Narmada Winery (Amissville)

Educational experience on how to sample, measure, blend and evaluate different varietals straight from the barrel. Seminar led by Brett Chappel and Sudha Patil. Reservations.


May 18:  Wineappalooza!

DuCard Vineyards (Etlan)

Annual wine, music, food, crafts and all around fun festival is Baaaack! Music by Modern Tactics and Scuffletown. Pets and families welcome.


May 18:  Southwest Virginia Wine Festival

Heartwood (Abingdon)

Experience the distinctive wines, cider, mead and beer of Southwest Virginia. Meet the winemakers and hear the stories of the wines and makers.


May 18-19:  Ash Lawn-Highland Virginia WineFest

Ash Lawn-Highland (Charlottesville)

Home of President James Monroe hosts this popular annual event with notable wineries, live music, artisans and food selections. Tours of the President's house.


May 18-19:  Rassawek Spring Jubilee Wine & Heritage Festival

Rassawek Vineyard (Columbia) 

Ride the steam train through the vineyard and see the tasting room that was Montpelier's greenhouse. Listen to live acoustic music, see the antique cars and enjoy the wines of 9 Virginia wineries, hand-crafted chocolates and gourmet foods. And much more!


 May 25:  Wings over Wine Country

Three Fox Vineyards (Delaplane) 

Meet Bill Sykes, Avian Ambassador and some incredible rescue animals. This is a fundraiser for the Wildlife Center of Virginia.


May 25:  Valley Fest

Massanutten Resort (Massanutten)

Shenandoah Valley's annual celebration celebrating Memorial Day weekend. Music and dancing, food samplings, shopping for crafts and all the wine and beer you could possibly enjoy in one place.


May 25:  Cork & Blues Fest

Glen Maury Park (Buena Vista) 

Unique and relaxing combination of blues music and wine tastings along with wide variety of foods. Camping available onsite.


May 25-26:  Wintergreen Festival of Wines

Evans Center (Wintergreen Resort)

Virginia wines featured on Saturday; international wines featured on Sunday. Idyllic setting on the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains.


 May 25-26:  Lucy's Weekend

Cooper Vineyards (Louisa)

Lucy, the winery's beloved mascot, is gone but not forgotten. Now Rosie will preside over the annual weekend to include guest winery, tastings and music. On-site dog adoptions and blessing of the animals on Sunday. Leashed friends and picnics welcome.


May 25:  251st Anniversary of American Wine

Philip Carter Winery of Virginia (Hume)

A perfect ending to May wine excursions by commemorating the first American wines sent by Mr. Carter to the Royal Society in London in 1762. Sure to be a memorable day of music, fencing, horse drawn carriages, vineyard tours and signature "Vintage Virginia Tasting" with wines from key vineyards across the state. Reservations required for Tasting. Free admission to the celebration.


About Events:  As our information comes from many sources, we recommend you verify dates and times, as well as costs and reservations that may be required.  (We are not responsible for incorrect or inaccurate information.) 


If you would like to submit an event, send details (what, where and when, as well as contact information) to info@vawinelover.com no later than the 10th of the month prior to the event.  




Taste of Monticello Wine Trail Wine Festival

April 13 - Charlottesville


Thirty wineries, 90 wines, hundreds and hundreds of wine lovers all under the Pavilion in downtown Charlottesville. It was a great day!

© 2006 Britt Marketing & Public Relations
Official Virginia Wine Lover™ is not affiliated with or published by Virginia Wine Lover Magazine 

     Click Here                           Click Here                 Click Here                       Click Here    
                    Click Here
This email was sent to frank@brittmarketing.com by info@vawinelover.com |  
Official Virginia Wine Lover eNewsletter | P.O. Box 1110 | Forest | VA | 24551

This email was sent by the author for the sole purpose of testing a draft message. If you believe you have received the message in error, please contact the author by replying to this message. Constant Contact takes reports of abuse very seriously. If you wish to report abuse, please forward this message to abuse@constantcontact.com.