Summer Wine Series
According to the maps app on my Droid phone, Willowcroft Farm Winery lay at the end of a three-mile dirt road. As my wife and I bounced down the narrow dirt road I seriously questioned whether my navigation unit had lost its digital marbles.
Fortunately for me Willowcroft is three miles down a dirt road and after the trip I can report that the wines are very much worth the bumpy ride.
We arrived around 2:00 p.m. this past Sunday afternoon and were struck by the beauty of the site. A lot of wineries are beautiful to view but a scant few have a gorgeous view across an adjoining valley and the Blue Ridge Mountains from its hillside location. Willowcroft does.
Working behind the counter, Chuck (very helpful) provided us samples of eight wines: five whites and three reds. We tasted an un-oaked Chardonnay, Seyval, Albarino, Riesling, Vidal Blanc, Red blend, Merlot and Cab Franc for only $5 per person. The Riesling and the Cab Franc were far and away the most interesting. I would note for my friends in Iowa that Willowcroft is offering a Traminette this year for the first time - while I wasn't able to taste it, Chuck thinks that it is a good wine. Maybe next time...
My impressions: Pale in the glass. Green apples and citrus profoundly on the nose. Medium bodied with sufficient acidity acidity to stand up to more than the typical Riesling pairings. Best when cold. Flattens out a little when it warms up. Ever so slight hint of tannic astringency at the end - grape seeds maybe? Moderately long citrus finish. Recommended.
Second thoughts: The typical pairing for Riesling is with spicy curry dishes, Chinese take out and other entrees which don't seem to fit any other wine. At 1% RS this is not a typical Riesling and combined with an almost Sauvignon Blanc like-backbone it is deserving of more upscale dining considerations than "take out". I think this wine would stand up very well with pasta dishes with butter or cream based sauces - particularly were seafood in the mix. Don't get me wrong: this is not a razor sharp Chardonnay. But it is balanced so nicely it would be a shame were not its full potential realized.
$15.99 at the winery.