Nestled between the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Potomac River, Loudoun County, Virginia, just keeps getting better.
This fantastic East Coast culinary destination and premier wine region, known as Washington, D.C.’s Wine Country, is about 50 kilometers from the capital of the USA. Loudoun Wine Country is home to more than 40 wineries, found along winding roads amid horse farms and historic estates. These boutique wineries have inviting tasting rooms in everything from rustic barns to architectural wonders. You can look forward to intimate tastings, informative tours, imaginative food pairings and engaging conversation with award-winning winemakers. There are breweries and cideries to visit, too. So cleanse your palate and head to Loudoun’s Wine (and beer and cider) Country.
This popular family-owned Breaux Vineyards opened an expansive new facility designed to accommodate a variety of tasting experiences, with rooms ranging from spacious to small and intimate. The main tasting room, open to patrons and groups smaller than eight, gives a nod to owner Paul Breaux Jr.’s Louisiana roots with an intriguing design reminiscent of New Orleans’ French Quarter. A tower room with panoramic views of the vineyards is available for VIP events, and larger groups can meet in the original facility, which is connected by a set of French doors.
Chrysalis Vineyards has expanded to include a new agricultural district spanning more than 165 hectares to familiarize visitors with Loudoun’s agricultural scene. Working with Locksley Estate Farmstead Cheese Co., Chrysalis added a cheese production facility and a futuristic tasting room, where visitors can connect digitally with tastings and information about the wines. Guests can also purchase beef, eggs and other products from the farm. The tasting room opened in 2015, and the first cheese from the farm was sold in 2016.
Stone Tower Winery
Stone Tower Winery’s state-of-the-art facility features a tasting room, meeting space and a beautifully designed terrace overlooking the estate vineyards toward Bull Run Mountains. The winery also introduced a menu of premium experiences, including seated tastings in the barrel chai and wine and cheese pairings.
Greenhill Winery and Vineyards
Located just outside the historic town of Middleburg, Greenhill Winery and Vineyards is a unique boutique winery in the heart of Loudoun County. The winery offers a variety of tours and tastings in its tasting room and manor house, complete with outdoor and lounge seating, bocce ball and picnic area.
A New Ale Trail
Pardon the pun, but Loudoun County’s craft beer scene is really hopping with more than 20 craft breweries and more on the way. These breweries feature small-batch handcrafted beer from brewmasters who are passionate about their craft. Breweries can be found across the county in historic downtown centers, as well as farms where brewers grow their own hops.
Soon Loudoun will also be home to the mid-Atlantic’s first commercial-scale hops processing facility near Lucketts. All of Loudoun’s breweries are part of the LoCo Virginia Ale Trail, which leads you to all of the craft breweries and pubs serving unique brews and local favorites.
A New Old Favorite: Cider
The other new player in the Loudoun beverage scene is hard cider – fermented apple juice with no sugar added. Mt. Defiance Cidery and Distillery, which is in historic Middleburg, produces craft ciders that range from traditional farmhouse blends of dry cider to innovative concoctions infused with ginger, honey and blueberries.
Corcoran Vineyards also recently launched a cider line. Corcoran’s Knot Head is a blend of seven apple varieties, all locally grown. The blend is partially aged in bourbon barrels to give a taste reminiscent of a whiskey sour.
Loudoun County cuisine embraces more than food; it’s about the entire dining experience. Loudoun Destination Restaurants are chosen in a juried process that judges them in five categories.
Goodstone Inn & Restaurant, one of the Loudoun Destination Restaurants