"Wine cheers the sad, revives the old, inspires the young, makes weariness forget his toil." ~ Lord Byron
When we visited San Francisco in the month of April we actually drove to Napa Valley, home of many great wineries in California. I was really excited then as I thought I would get to see the grape vines, only to realize that the plants had not leafed yet. Consequently, we were welcomed by uncountable grape vines that were just pruned, definitely not a sight that I once imagined. Having said that, we were really happy that we made the trip (approximately 40 min from San Francisco) as it was still a bliss travelling across the valley, from one vineyard to another.
"Wine is the most civilized thing in the world." ~ Ernest Hemingway
We left San Francisco feeling a bit unaccomplished because we thought if we were not able to observe a growing grape vine during the trip, we would hardly get the chance anymore unless we fly to west coast again. Little did we know that we reside in a state with many wineries too! Oh, how shocking. We were eager to visit one, especially close to the harvest season. In these few months we had been patient, waiting the arrival of a weekend with nice weather (a few weeks ago it was boiling hot out there as the temperature was up to 48 Celsius). Last Sunday was the day we had our dreams fulfilled.
"Good wine is a necessity of life for me." ~ Thomas Jefferson
After doing some survey on the internet, we had our hearts set on Williamsburg Winery in Williamsburg, roughly an hour drive from Richmond. Claimed to be the largest winery in Virginia, we figured that we wouln't be disappointed. So, off we went after we had the map googled.
After an hour of driving, we finally found this gem hidden in the suburb. We are welcomed by rows of grape vines.
Upon arrival, we immediately signed ourselves up for tour-and-taste, a guided tour offered by the winery followed with 7 wine tasting. The tour cost $7, inclusive of the etched wine glass after the wine tasting session. During the registration I was asked to show my photo-ID but not Tomato! Oh I was so flattered! (In US no one under the age of 21 is allowed to purchase and possess alcohol) That really made my day, ha!
Due to the fact that it is not the harvest season yet, we did not really see the process of wine-making. So the major highlight would be a stroll down the barrel cellar. (this shot was taken with flash)
I tried to capture a shot without flash. The wine cellar sure is a dim room. The temperature is set to around 55 Fahrenheit for fermentation so it was kinda chilly to walk through when everyone was wearing shorts and short-sleeves shirts.
Each barrel is labeled with the name of the grape, or the type of the blend. It sure was fun walking through the cellars.
Then came the wine-tasting session...
Types of wine offered by Williamsburg Winery.
Wine tasting with crackers and cheese. Wine and cheese ... life doesn't get better than this ...
The wine glass with the winery's special monogram for us to take home as keepsakes.
How could one leave the winery without bringing some wine home? We bought some of the best-selling wines. $22 for three bottles of decent wine, not a bad deal at all.
The trip ended with two adults in their mid-20s running freely in the vineyard like small kids ...
A typical grape vine. See the grapes? I bet the fence is set to prevent people like you and me who would try to sample a grape or two from the vineyard. Hehe!
Beautiful grapes that will soon be harvested and turned into great wine ...
"A man not old, but mellow, like good wine." ~ Stephen Phillips
A shot to share with everyone ... cheers!
"A bottle of good wine, like a good act, shines ever in the retrospect." ~ Robert Louis Stevenson