Aspen Dale Winery at the Barn
Chris and I decided to venture out to Delaplane, VA about twenty-five minutes from our home for a little drive yesterday. Aspen Dale Winery at the Barn is about an hour outside of DC, a short jaunt from Haymarket, VA. Definitely worth the visit! We found the barn after driving through some beautiful country side and just as the directions on the web site mention, we turned into the drive just after the stacked stone wall. The parking lot was already buzzing as we wandered into the barn. Making our way through the rustic hall and down the stairs into the tasting room, it seemed as though we were interrupting a private party. Upon second look it was as if the other guests seemed surprised that someone else had discovered their little secret – the intimate cozy setting.
It could easily have been a very stuffy environment, but it was a very friendly atmosphere and we were able to start right up with one of the wine associates who brought out a small plate of cheeses, hard meats, and chocolates to sample the first of five wines, the Rose. The Mary-Madeleine wasn’t too sweet and I liked the flavors presented. The subtle fruit made me long for warmer weather so I could enjoy this on a picnic or sunny patio. The Sarah’s Chapeau’s Vidal and Sav Blanc blend was slightly more fruity and dry, a nice combo but still seemed out-of-place for the season. I have to confess that since I’d already tried their Merlot a couple of weeks ago, I was holding out all of my taste buds for my favorite, or so I thought. Moving to the next wine, the Hildersham, I noted fruit up front but a very crispy and herbal finish. It was not what I expected and I’ll be interested to visit with that one again come spring and summer.
Now for the long-awaited reunion, meet the Parris Country Blend Merlot. No disappointment here, I fell in love all over again when my nose picked up the rich aroma of blackberries and smoky bacon. It really is ready to drink out of the bottle, and I also agree with Virginia Wine time that it could mature into an even better wine by staying in the bottle a few more years, either way, a great wine. I didn’t realize I could make room for another Aspen Dale Wine in this romance, but I realized very quickly that there is something very special about the Rockawalkin Cabernet Sauvignon. It is so complex in flavor, but not overpowering like an in-your-face red. The balanced layers of fruit introduced themselves one at a time, currants, red berries, with just a hint of spice. I must say this is my new favorite. We met the owners and wine maker who were very warm and accommodating. I will be revisiting Aspen Dale very soon!