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Virginia on the road

The development of a young wine region

13 May 2024
Werner Elflein

virginia-on-the-road.jpgPhoto: Pixabay
Vineyards in Virginia

Compared to the total area under vines in the United States, Virginia's viticulture may only play a minor role. In terms of quality, however, the wines of the state on the American east coast have become increasingly important in recent decades. Although Virginia's wines are still little known on the international stage, they are increasingly developing into important export goods.

Virginia is still a young wine region. It was not until the late 18th century that European immigrants planted the first vineyards here. Among them was Thomas Jefferson, one of the founding fathers and third president of the United States, who himself cultivated vines for over 30 years at his country estate Monticello near Charlottesville.

The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge. You, who so well know the nature of my soul, will not suppose, however, that I gave utterance to a threat. At length I would be avenged; this was a point definitively settled — but the very definitiveness with which it was resolved precluded the idea of risk.

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I must not only punish but punish with impunity. A wrong is unredressed when retribution overtakes its redresser. It is equally unredressed when the avenger fails to make himself felt as such to him who has done the wrong. It must be understood that neither by word nor deed had I given Fortunato cause to doubt my good will. I continued, as was my wont, to smile in his face, and he did not perceive that my smile now was at the thought of his immolation.

The wines at a glance

The rating of the wine reflects the mean value from a tasting by our jury.
The wine was evaluated in a blind tasting.
The wine was tasted as a barrel sample or before an official test number (Amtliche Prüfungsnummer or Staatliche Prüfnummer) was issued.
The wine exhibited a sensory abnormality during our tasting. This does not necessarily have to be a qualitative defect or a wine fault. In the case of a qualitative impairment, a devaluation or rejection was made depending on the type and severity of the defect or wine fault.

Early Mountain

6109 Wolftown Hood Road
Madison VA 22727
The United States of America
Phone: +1 540 948-9005
Internet: www.earlymountain.com
E‑mail: cheers@earlymountain.com

All wines of the producer at weinfreaks.de

WinereddryMerlotPetit Verdot

2021 “Eluvium”

The United States of America


14.3 % alcohol


Tasted on 24 March 2024 by Werner Elflein

Cuvée made from 78 % Merlot and 22 % Petit Verdot. Opaque black-red. Concentrated bouquet of blackberry and other black berries, characterized by dark roasted aromas. Still a little lactic. On the palate, the fruit is still clearly coated in fine-grained and sandy tannins. Powerful body, enormous density. Very long and persistent. The “Eluvium” is absolutely not intended for early consumption. It makes a promise for the future and should fulfill this promise after ten years at the earliest, probably even much later. It is currently still closed and needs a lot of air. Anyone who cannot or does not want to wait (which would be a shame) should definitely reach for the Ovarius decanter. A great interpretation of Bordeaux.

Paradise Springs (Virginia)

13219 Yates Ford Road
Clifton VA 20124
The United States of America
Phone: +1 703 830-9463
Internet: www.paradisespringswinery.com
E‑mail: wine@paradisespringswinery.com

All wines of the producer at weinfreaks.de

WinereddryCabernet FrancPetit VerdotTannat

2021 Cabernet Franc

The United States of America


13.1 % alcohol


Tasted on 22 March 2024 by Werner Elflein

Cuvée made from 90 % Cabernet Franc, 5 % Petit Verdot and 5 % Tannat. Ethereal, spicy nose with aromas of raspberry, raspberry stone and light red fruit. In particular a hint of redcurrant. Smoky, reminiscent of wood burning in a fireplace on a winter evening. In the mouth, initially with a good balance between fruit and tannins. Ripe, but also distinctive tannins, partly coarse-grained, partly fine-grained, partly fine-sandy. Still needs time to hamonise. Very good length. However, the wine changes noticeably the longer it remains in the decanter. After more than an hour it is black-red and opaque, the roasted flavours cover the now dark berry fruit and slight bitter tones appear. Uncertain prognosis.

Michael Shaps Wineworks

1781 Harris Creek Way
Charlottesville VA 22902
The United States of America
Phone: +1 434 296-3438
Internet: www.virginiawineworks.com
E‑mail: tastingroom@virginiawineworks.com

All wines of the producer at weinfreaks.de

WinewhitedryPetit Manseng

2019 Petit Manseng

The United States of America

Virginia ↳ Monticello • American Viticultural Area (AVA)

14.7 % alcohol


Tasted on 15 April 2024 by Werner Elflein

Golden yellow in colour. Pronounced aroma of peach, peach skin and yellow stone fruit. Reflects the characteristics of the grape variety (low yields, high must weights, thick berry skin) in terms of the alcohol and the phenolics. On the palate with low acidity, warming phenolic notes that drift only moderately into bitterness, ripe fruit flavours and very good length. Good food companion.

Williamsburg Winery

5800 Wessex Hundred
Williamsburg VA 23185
The United States of America
Phone: +1 757 229-0999
Internet: www.williamsburgwinery.com
E‑mail: wine@wmbgwine.com

All wines of the producer at weinfreaks.de


2022 Viognier

The United States of America


13.4 % alcohol


Tasted on 28 March 2024 by Werner Elflein

Lemon yellow. Slender aroma of citrus, melon and some tobacco. Inadequate carbonic acid on the palate, which gives the wine a certain sharpness and bitterness and masks any flavours. Little depth, only medium length. This less expressive interpretation of a Viognier unfortunately misses the point.