Jim Law (Linden) & Diane Flynt (Foggy Ridge) James Beard Award Semi-finalists... VA Wine Strikes Gold in SanFran (7 double golds; 2 best of class)... VA Wine Sales Up 6%; Cider taking off... Keswick Wins 2016 Governor's Cup...Blue Valley Winery Opens... Pomeroy is Global Supermodel... International Winery Review "Virginia Wine Has Come of Age"... More VAWine Grapes - Havest Up 17% in 2014... Barboursville's Luca Paschina awarded Order of Merit of the Italian Republic... VA Has New Master Sommelier - Jarad Slipp w/RdV Vineyards... 7 VA Wines (from Tarara, Linden, and Barboursville) earn 90 ratings from Wine Enthusiast

Sunday, February 19, 2017

There's Gold in Them There Bottles

The Dog House
Linden, Virginia

Paws up to the wines and wineries earning gold in this year's Virginia Governor's Cup competition. Over 490 wines from 102 Virginia wineries competed this year. On Tuesday, February 21, we'll find out who makes the case and who takes home the pawsome cup. I loved checking it out at Keswick Vineyards - last year's winner.

Barboursville Vineyards
2013 Paxxito
2014 Cabernet Franc
Breaux Vineyards
2012 Meritage
2014 Meritage
Cardinal Point Vineyard & Winery
2014 Union
CrossKeys Vineyards
2015 Cabernet Franc
Horton Vineyards
2015 Viognier
Ingleside Plantation Winery
2014 Petit Verdot
Jefferson Vineyards
2012 Meritage
2014 Petit Verdot
King Family Vineyards
2014 Loreley
2014 Petit Verdot
Michael Shaps Wineworks
2014 Meritage
2014 Cabernet Franc
Pollak Vineyards
2013 Cabernet Franc Reserve
Sunset Hills Vineyards
2012 Mosaic
The Barns at Hamilton Station Vineyards
2014 Cabernet Sauvignon
2014 Meritage
Upper Shirley Vineyards
2014 Zachariah
Valley Road Vineyards
2014 Petit Verdot
Veritas Vineyard & Winery
2014 Petit Manseng
2014 Petit Verdot Paul Shaffer 6th Edit

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Virginia Wine, Cider Craftsmen Semifinalists for James Beard Award

The Dog House
Linden, VA
A Wine Dogs paws up to two distinguished members of Virginia's wine and cider community. Diane Flynt of Foggy Ridge Cider and Jim Law of Linden Vineyards are semifinalists for the prestigious James Beard Foundation Award for Outstanding Wine, Beer, or Spirits Professional. The category recognizes a beer, wine, or spirits professional who has made a significant national impact on the restaurant industry.

Semifinalists were selected from a list of over 24,000 online entries. The finalists will be announced March 15. A full list of this year’s full semifinalist list is available online at

Sunday, January 15, 2017

VA Wineries Strike Gold in San Francisco

San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition
San Francisco, CA

Virginia wineries brought home a treasure trove of medals from the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, including two Best-in-Class and seven double gold medals (three for Petit Verdots).

The competition, hailed as the largest competition of American wines in the world, drew 7,000 entries from 28 states.
Ecco and Pomeroy visit Lost Creek, maker of the 2015 Best of Class Chardonnay
Best of class honors went to:
Double Gold winners (awarded when all five judges rate wine as gold):

In all, 23 Virginia wineries claimed 65 medals. Among them, Effingham Manor Winery, which has been in a holding pattern on opening since October but continue to rack up awards.

Ecco visits Pearmund Cellars, one of Virginia's three Double Gold winners for Petit Verdot. 

Monday, October 10, 2016

October is Virginia Wine Month: Wine Dogs Share 5 Pawsome Ways to Celebrate!

Each October, Virginia celebrates our grapeful heritage with Virginia Wine Month. Ecco offers her suggestions for joining the fun.

1. Visit a local winery. Virginia boasts 283 wineries making some of the best wines in the world. With the harvest complete or wrapping up and the fall leaves beginning to turn, October is a perfect time for a visit.
Ecco and Uncle Jeff enjoy the view at Rappahannock Cellars.
Linda Claynier welcomes Ecco back to Desert Rose Ranch & Winery.
Worried about drinking and driving? Take Uber and receive discounts on tastings, merchandise and wine at participating wineries near Leesburg, Richmond, and Charlottesville. . 

2. Attend a festival. A twist on winery hopping, festivals allow you to sample several different wineries all in one convenient location. This weekend was the Fall Festival and Sunset Wine Tasting at Mount Vernon - always a sold-out event. Coming up is Loudoun County's Epicurience. Check here for more listings. NOTE: Not all festivals are pet friendly; best to ask in advance.

Pouring wine for Philip Carter at the Mount Vernon Wine Festival.

3. Wine and Dine at a local restaurant. With the locavore movement taking hold, more restaurants are featuring Virginia on their wine lists (what better to pair with locally-sourced food?). allows you to sniff out restaurants in your area. Some, like L'Auberge Chez Francois in Great Falls are hosting special events in celebration of Virginia Wine Month, including a wine tasting on October 1 and a dinner on October 19. 

Claude Thibuat (Thibaut-Janisson) and Toni Kilyk (Granite Heights)
share their award-winning wines at L'Auberge Chez Francois.

4. Host a Virginia Wine-Tasting Party. Invite your friends and show off  your favorite Virginia wine. Or have everyone bring a bottle to share - with so many delicious wines to choose from, you are bound to discover a new crush.

Guests to the sunset wine tasting on Blue Mountain in Linden brought wines from nearby Fox Meadow as well as Corcoranm, Rappahannock Cellars, and Miracle Valley.
5. Stock up Virginia Wine at your local ABC. In honor of Virginia Wine Month, Virginia ABCs are offering a 10 percent discount on all Virginia Wine and spirits. Ecco picked up bottles from Barboursville, Trump, and Williamsburg on a recent visit.

How will you celebrate?

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