King Family, A Vineyard Fit For Royalty

Between apple and pumpkin picking  at  Chiles OrchardThe Blue Ridge Home Builders Association Parade of Homes and wine tasting during Virginia Wine Month,  there aren’t enough weekends in October!  Couple that with lapis blue  skies and the early changes in fall foliage and you have the makings of a fabulous day!

We settled on a brief stop at the crowded Chiles Peach Orchard where we selected an incredibly delicious jar of Five Pepper Jelly!  Armed with our jelly, we drove  around the corner to Half Mile Branch Rd.  and the King Family Vineyard.

Anticipating a large group of visitors in the tasting room,  we decided to pass on sampling and immediately headed to the stocked refrigerator for a chilled bottle of the 2009 Viognier!  Tasters were three rows deep and we found  it virtually impossible to make our purchase.  Fortunately for us, Judy Bowers enthusiastically came to our aid, guided us over to a satellite register and even provided us with an ice bucket plus two warm baguettes of bread!

You could not pick a more beautiful place to bring guests or just enjoy a romantic afternoon with your loved one! The jelly on the warm baguette was fantastic and paired well with the Viognier. In our haste we forgot a knife thus  improvising our own spreader!


A Great Combination!


Strolling  towards the manicured tiff grass polo field, we couldn’t help but admire the beauty of  our surroundings. Sadly enough, directly in front of us a polo match had been interrupted by a player sustaining injuries who was immediately  whisked off by ambulance to the emergency room. The match was converted to a friendly practice session and was more in keeping with the leisurely atmosphere of the day. 

When you come be sure to take a walk over to the stables for a close up view of the horses and the smell of fresh hay.  We call that straw on the nose!


In the Stable


You will not be disappointed by your visit to King Family. The wine, the scenery and horses add up to a royal outing in the Fall in Virginia!

Take Rt. 250 West past Western Albemarle High School. Turn right onto Rt. 797 (Hillsboro Lane). Turn right onto Rt. 684 (Half Mile Branch). Go one mile, entrance on the left. OR, take I-64 West to Exit 107 (Crozet), turn right onto Rt. 250 East. Go 1/2 mile, turn left onto Rt. 797 (Hillsboro Lane) and then as above.

Pollak Sunset Concert

We are very excited about the second to the last Friday Sunset Concert Series  of 2010 at Pollak Vineyards, Friday September 24th starting at 5 p.m.. Pollak has a tasting room reminiscent of  some California wineries, open with clean lines and very minimalist in style. The wine is really the focus  here!  Nick Dovel is the gracious and accommodating tasting room manager and Casey is my favorite tasting hostess, her witty sense of humor makes the tasting fun!


Tasting Room Fireplace at Pollak


The Mountain Hollow Swingers will be entertaining the audience with their unique blend of Bluegrass and Swing. The Afton Mountain area is a perfect backdrop for a Bluegrass evening and accentuated by the  lovely surrounding vineyard.

Catering should be delicious and provided by the Everyday Gourmet!

They have catered the last two wine dinners, so everyone is excited to have them cater this event!

The menu will include:


My Choice, Fruity but delicious with Chicken!


-Muffaletta sandwiches with olive tapanade, salami, ham and provolone cheese on locally made foccacia.

-Roasted vegetables with creamy goat cheese spread… on whole grain bread.
-Chicken tacos with sautéed onions and a chipotle salsa in locally made
tortillas. Served with onions, cilantro, crema and queso fresco.
-Pastor (roast pork) tacos in locally made tortillas with onions, cilantro,
crema and queso fresco. Served with a variety of salsas.
All made to pair perfectly with the fabulous estate-grown wines from Pollak.

Even though we’re having a mild heat wave, the evening should cool down and be very pleasant.  Bring your chairs, a blanket and some snacks in case the line gets a bit too long.  I would also suggest a little bug repellent, I’m ever the Girl Scout!  See you there!

Keswick Vineyards and author, Ellen Crosby

Ellen signed The Viognier Vendetta for me!

What fun! Leave it to Keswick Vineyards to make everyone feel at home in what could be an otherwise stuffy environment. Ellen Crosby, was approachable and friendly, signing her new  book, THE VIOGNIER VENDETTA as Keswick  released with anticipation their 2009 Viognier Estate Reserve! Ellen combines history, wine making and our locale to create a suspenseful romantic tale for oenophiles and mystery lovers alike. We purchased a bottle and her book, but, in retrospect should have bought more of her books and more of the Viognier! Her previous novel, The Riesling Retribution was selected as one of 5 finalists for the 7th Annual People’s Choice Awards sponsored by the Library of Virginia. Afterthoughts…we did take home their 2009 Norton and enjoyed it with an appetizer watching our favorite non- home grown team, The Dallas Cowboys.  If we hadn’t taped the game, we might have stayed long enough to adopt one of the adorable schnauzer-beagle mix puppies featured at Yappy Hours!

The Barrel Club at Keswick Vineyards

Your Personal Barrel at Keswick Winery

Be sure to ask about the Barrel Club when you visit the Tasting Room at Keswick Vineyards!

One of several types of Wine Club Memberships offered aiming to satisfy all levels of wine enthusiasts!