After our Stone Tower visit, we headed down to Haymarket (a short drive on 15 South from Leesburg area) and checked in at Winery at La Grange. We headed into the Barrel room where the package tasting and pickup happens. There was a good crowd already there, but amazing Katie who manages the club remembers my name and greeted me and invited us to a table to taste.
There were six wines in this package, some of which were new releases. First up we had the 2017 Viognier. These grapes come from Washington state and are fermented in stainless steel. It had nice crisp notes but also had a mineral quality that I feel like meant it was very young still. It’s a new release, being sold only to club members right now, so with time it may get to a better place. I usually like Viognier, but this one didn’t bring the same familiar notes.
Next up, the 2017 Sauvignon Blanc, all grown in Virginia. I got excited, since La Grange is sourcing so much from elsewhere, and here was a VA grown Sauv Blanc. This wine also tasted young however, and it needed more time. Many club members were trading this wine out for the 2013 va cab sauv. I think this has potential, and it was their first foray into making this wine. Let’s see where this goes. I traded this one in.
Third wine, the 2016 Harrison House Red. These were Virginia grapes, and this bottle is 60% cab sauv, 40% Petit Verdot. I coincidentally just opened my ’14 Harrison House, and I liked the depth of it, though Husband did not care for it. This one felt very young by comparison, but it had that distinctive flavor of petit verdot in it, and it really made its presence known. I’ll keep this on the shelf probably at least until we enter 2020.
Next taste, the 2015 Cab Franc Reserve. These grapes come from Washington State, not Virginia. The pourer noted the distinctive absence of that green pepper/green taste of Va Cab Franc, because basically, she said, it cannot fully ripen in va, so it tastes different here. While that may be true, I do love me some va cab franc, when it’s done well. This is very smooth and light and probably needs another year in the bottle to really get where we want it to be.
Next wine, the 2013 Sonoma Cab Sauv – 100% of the grapes are sourced out of Sonoma. This wine was also very smooth, but you could tell it doesn’t have much time left before it passes its peak and enters a decline. It was nice, though it didn’t pack the punch I like from Cab Sauv. Drink it soon!
FInally, the Non-Vintage SNORT – their port style Norton fortified wine. I have a love/hate relationship with this wine – you can totally enjoy a small sip and get the sweet dessert-style quality while also being satisfied with you small sip of it. I’d serve this at a party at the end when you want everyone to feel happy and full, but I’d never be able to drink the entire bottle.
We grabbed the wines, swapped the sauv blanc out and went in for a tasting in the main building.
Club member perk, this tasting is free. I won’t go through the entire list with you here, but the Cab Franc Reserve ended up being best in show here, and it was the ’14 edition. This was much more full-bodied, while still smooth. We added the temperanillo and Syrah to this list. We headed upstairs and claimed a couch to chat and enjoy our wine.
This was a great spot for us to enjoy our cab franc and talk about the wineries, and next plans.
These two glasses convinced us that we would need an outing to RdV to be followed by an afternoon at the Salamander right after Christmas – this will not be a cheap time, but it should be an amazing afternoon of luxury.
This was not the best package I’ve had from La Grange – I don’t know why that is – I’m hopeful to see some more great wines this coming February.