After a summer hiatus from blogging ( I didn’t realize how long it had been) I am renewed and refreshed and ready to go! I have written more blog posts about Early Mountain Vineyards lately than any other winery. There are several reasons for this and I’ll have one more before I set out to conquer the “tales of the 2012 harvest”.
- One- Early Mountain Vineyards only recently opened after taking over Sweeley Estate Vineyards, an excellent winery that struggled to get established.
- Two- EMV appears to be masters at marketing and giving patrons what they’re looking for in a winery experience.
- Three- I have had a couple recent experiences there that could have been awkward and the staff at EMV made it anything BUT!
Lessons and Faux Pas
When you consider a wine tasting event, one envisions jewel hued wines poured by knowledgeable servers in rusticly elegant surroundings enhanced by a backdrop of grapevines and vibrant sunsets. The reality is that sometimes it’s rainy and outdoor patio seating is no longer an option. Note the following scenario…
On our most recent trip to EMV, the weather forecast was absolutely not in our favor. Our favorite vino amigos (vinigos?) had just moved back to C-ville and the last time we had been together was at the same winery under the former ownership. It was absolutely fitting to return together for the Sippin’ Into Sunset hosted weekly on Friday evenings. Armed with our best goodies, we headed to the winery anticipating our patio picnic listening to music. That evening the headliners was the acoustic trio, the Local Vocals: Mike Perfater, guitarist/vocalist and Cindy Perfater, former lead singer of the Houserockers band were joined by Pat Burns, also guitarist/vocalist formerly of the Kool Kats and City Lights.
Ironically, one of the Houserockers, Jeff Pugh and his wife Pam were the friends I just mentioned! A nice spontaneous reunion ensued for our friends and we decided to enjoy our picnic inside. Early Mountain provides the music, however, the musicians must perform inside and even though you can hear it on the patio, the sound is better indoors. We selected the center round table in front of the tasting bar and spread our feast, pouring two excellent wines. Sounds perfect, right?
Not quite, my cheeks flushed and not as a result of the wine, it was quietly and politely called to our attention ( I’m not one for reading the fine print, or even regular print ) that picnics were reserved for the patio unless you were purchasing food from the winery. I take sole responsibility for the faux pas. Instead of asking us to relocate, we were very graciously allowed to remain at our primo spot and thus, had a wonderful time. The bonus, our friends from Ankida Ridge, Nathan Vrooman, Christine Vrooman and Rachel Stinson of Stinson Vineyards were pouring their 2011 Chardonnay and their fabulous Pinot Noir.
It never did rain, sunset was less than spectacular and guess what? Nobody cared! Also, the servers were knowledgeable and charming ( Margaret Prior) and the wine was excellent! We chose the Ankida Ridge 2011 Chardonnay and the Barboursville Nebbiolo. Thank you Early Mountain Vineyards for a memorable evening.
Helpful Hint: If the sunset and outdoor fire pits and fireplace are more important to you than the music you can choose the delicious fare at EMV or pack your own picnic. Otherwise, stay inside and leave your picnic basket at home 🙂
TOMORROW- Sip & Shop
Bring a friend or three and enjoy a complementary glass of sparkling wine while styling and shopping the latest accessories by jewelry designer Hyla DeWitt, experiencing Rochelle Behrens’ The Shirt firsthand, and picking up tips and tricks from Wardrobe Stylist and the founder of Spendalla Wardrobe Styling Wendy Pilch.
Urban Chic, a contemporary clothing boutique, first opened in Washington, DC’s posh Georgetown neighborhood in 2004. It is a mainstay of the DC-area fashion community, hosting trunk shows, supporting community organizations, and producing a full-scale fashion show/charity benefit in Baltimore each fall.
The entire team at Early Mountain Vineyards is excited to have Urban Chic and its dedicated team of fashion professionals bringing the very best of DC fashion and the latest fall trends to our corner of the world!
Designers featured at the event include: Shoshanna, Vince, Joie, Trina Turk, Rebecca Minkoff, Tibi, Autumn Cashmere, Citizens of Humanity, Seven for All Mankind, Paige Premium Denim, Rochelle Behrens, Hyla DeWitt