The blogmasters have visited over 115 wineries in the Commonwealth, and we have our favorites (there are many), and our not-so-favorites (ditto), but we have yet to come across the Perfect Virginia Winery. Usually over several bottles at a particular winery, we conjure up our image of the Perfect Winery. A few in Virginia come close, but it's a tall order. What makes a Perfect Winery?
1. Wine: A no brainer. Good variety, crisp and dry whites, bold and dry reds. And maybe one or two sweets to appease those looking for what we now call Charms wines. And a dessert or port offering.
2. Interior Set Up: A large airy tasting room that absorbs sound. A real wood fireplace, that is actually used. A long tasting bar. Eco-friendly design. Plenty of tables and chairs. NO TV. NO LIVE BANDS. An iPod with a good winery-themed mix, or a DJ playing classics at a decent volume, works wonders. We find it amazing that so many wineries opt to be venues for live bands, particularly the ones in Northern Virginia. The wine, tasting room, and the view should be enough of a draw for visitors.
3. Exterior Set Up: A nice view (mountains, a body of water, the vineyards, meadows, forests - we'd use the natural setting to the best advantage). Plenty of picnic tables.
4. A Resident Cat and a Resident Dog. To please 100% of the pet lovers.
5. No Limos, No Keg Buses: Keep the drunkards who want to turn the tasting room into an alpha male frat house or loud, vulgar bachelorette party out.
It's unlikely that we'll find such a winery in the future of Virginia's growing industry, but we can dream.
What is your idea of a perfect winery?