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Every month 868 Estate Vineyards hosts “The Vine”, a women’s only wine pairing event, usually held the second to last Thursday of the month. I finally had a free calendar this month so I decided to join my friends and check it out. And, lucky me they were featuring wine and food from South America – one of my favorite areas for wine. It was an absolutely beautiful day, and not too hot, so I decided to stop by a winery or two in the late afternoon before arriving for the 7pm pairing event.

Timing only allowed me to make one pit stop, so I chose to swing by Breaux Vineyards which is right across from 868 off of Harper’s Ferry Road in Purcellville. It was 5:30pm and just enough time to enjoy one glass of wine before they closed for the day at 6pm. It’s been two years since I visited Breaux so the wines were all new to me. I selected a glass of their Equation. It is a non-vintage blend, meaning the grapes of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot come from various vintage years. I would say this is a very good every day drinking red wine. It’s a bit gritty and earthy, which I personally seem to always lean towards. I enjoyed it while having the entire vineyard to myself which made it even more magical! And, their views…just speechless.

I eventually had to scurry out of Breaux (well, it was closing time after all) so I made my way across the street to 868 to join the ladies for The Vine. It was truly a very enjoyable evening meeting lots of ladies who love wine just as I do. The food was courtesy of The Grandale Restaurant, located on-site at 868. They provided us with an amuse bouche followed by a three course meal all inspired by South America. I’ll skip the food descriptions since that’s not really my area of expertise. Let’s just get to the wine!

We began with a glass of 868 Estate Riesling. I am sure any white wine lover would really enjoy the Riesling. It was a bit too tart for me, but the citrus notes went very well with the watermelon it was served with.

First course of roasted plantain and a Chilean chicken was paired with a white Argentinian wine, Altosur Torrontes ’11. This was a very crisp, dry white with some hints of spiciness. Our second course was a pan fried squash and shaved beef round in a creamy tomato sauce. This was accompanied by Ventisquero Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve ’12 from Chile. I absolutely loved this wine! It is dry with a subtly sweet and smooth finish. They describe the taste like caramel, and I have to agree. And, I LOVE caramel, so no surprise this was on my “must buy” list.

Finally, with dessert, we were served Cobos Malbec Felino ’12 from Argentina. Again, a very dry red but with notes of chocolate and berries which went very well with the chocolate mousse filled cake we were served.

I am very much looking forward to attending another Vine even in the near future. They are limited seating events, so you do need to reserve your spot early. The fee is $40 and it includes an appetizer and three course meal all with paired wines. Visit their website events calendar for more information.

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