Pros: Good wines, scenic drive, beautiful area, friendly staff
Cons: No restaurant or food, still developing, only dry wines (good and bad)
Stone Tower Winery, located in the heart of Loudon County and off of Hogback Mountain, just outside of Leesburg, has recently been established. The mile drive just off 15 is a beautiful drive, with fields and amazing views leading up to the winery.
I arrived and was welcomed by Danielle, who was somewhat friendly. She explained the tastings and I opted to go with the vintage tasting, which included all of their wines and a glass to take home. We went through their 6 wines which in my opinion were pretty well balanced for a new winery. Two of the six wines are not from their vineyard (2009 and 2011 Sanglier Noble) but are from Virginia grapes. Also notable is the way they ferment the fruit for their Viognier, which is in a concrete egg, something I have never heard of before, but apparently is used by some other wineries around the world but not as common.
The interior of the current tasting room has an relaxing feel but not as great as other wineries in the area. They have an upstairs as well for parties and events. The owners are working on expanding the winery and tasting room. The new buildings will include a larger tasting room, making the current tasting room an events room for club members and possibly future rentals. Also, what appears to be a new production and barrel room. I was told this should be completed by fall of 2014. I feel once the expansion is complete, I can give this winery a full 5 stars.
Overall, I definitely recommend this winery. The drive, the area, the wines are a great addition to Virginia. This new winery has some great expectations and I look forward to seeing what comes of this excellent base. The expansion shows promise and I can see this being a up and coming vineyard and winery of Virginia, climbing it's way to the top. I think work on their young wines will also turn into some excellent wines in the following years. I look forward to visiting this winery again once they complete the expansion and finish developing the other two wines from their own vineyard!
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