Tastings and tours at Blue Ridge Mountain wineries are popular and romantic activities for Parkway visitors. A new trend in winery touring, called “wine trails,” has made it easier for travelers to tour more than one winery on a given trip. A wine trail can consist of any number of wineries within a specific region. Some trails are meant for independent travel, and visitors must make their own arrangements for lodging and transportation. There are also full service wine trails, which provide all travel and accommodation arrangements.
Wine Trails in Virginia
Virginia’s wine economy has quickly grown to become one of the top in the nation. Over 130 wineries and several wine trails can be found across the state. Wine has become such an important part of Virginia that October has now been designated as Virginia Wine Month.
Some popular wine trails in Virginia are:
- The Bedford Wine Trails
- The Blue Ridge Wine Way
- Fauquier County Wine Trail
- The Heart of Virginia Wine Trail
- The Loudoun Wine Trail
- The Monticello Wine Trail
- The Shenandoah Valley Wine County Trail
- Mountain Road Wine Experience
Wine Trails in North Carolina
Grown from just a handful of wineries 30 years ago to over 80 today, North Carolina’s wine industry is quickly becoming one of the largest tourist attractions in the state. Home to the oldest cultivated grapevine in the New World, North Carolina has wineries to suit every taste and palate.
Some popular wine trails in North Carolina are:
- Yadkin Valley Wine Trail
- Haw River Wine Trail
- Vineyards of Swan Creek Wine Trail
- Uwharrie Mountains Wine Trail
Wineries Near the Blue Ridge Parkway
See more in the Virtual Blue Ridge Travel Directory
Red Wine Varieties
Similar to Merlot but not as well known. The taste of these grapes is said to resemble black cherry or plum fruit. This type of wine goes well with many dishes including those prepared with tomato sauces.
Is considered to be made with one of the best varieties of grapes. These wines have a full bodied flavor and are often served with red meat.
Considered one of the easiest wines to drink. Merlot is good for those just introduced to red wines. It can be served with any type of food and has a tannin flavor base.
These wines have a taste that is fresh with a fruity aroma. Typically served with chicken, lamb or salmon.
Syrah or Shiraz
Two names for the same type of grape. Their wine has a fruity taste with black pepper overtones. It is served best with beef, steak and wild game.
Can be wines from blush to heavy red. They typically have a berry and pepper flavor and are served with both meat or red sauce dishes.
White Wine Varieties
Has a citrus flavor. It can also be made into sparkling wine and is served well with chicken and fish dishes.
Often served with Asian food or pork. This wine has a fruity flavor with peach or rose in the aroma.
Describes a variety of grapes, Muscat wines are best enjoyed without food. They have a musky, grapefruit aroma.
These wines have a very fresh taste and improve with age. They are typically served well with chicken, pork and fish. Their flavor is light and can be reminiscent of fresh apples.
This is considered a versatile wine. Often served with poultry, seafood and salads. The flavor can be both herbal and fruity.