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This past weekend my sister and I decided to take a little drive out West to Delaplane, Virginia in Fauquier County. I really love this region of the state because I can almost feel the history in the air – down the curvy roads, up the mountain peaks, and inside the corner stores and old rustic buildings. So, I was happy to make my way back. The original purpose of the trip was for a private tour and tasting of the new RdV Vineyards, which we did partake in, but the best part of the trip were our visits to Delaplane Cellars and Three Fox Vineyards.

Our first stop was Delaplane. I visited them about four years ago, and they were still fairly new. But, I remembered the spectacular views (that reminded me of Napa!) and a pretty darn good Vidal Blanc that I enjoyed on a hot summer day on the deck! It wasn’t quite warm enough to sit outside, but we definitely got out there for some amazing pictures.

Most of the wines were new to me, so I was anxious to give them a try. For $8.00 they offer a tasting of five wines – a 2013 Fermented Chardonnay, 2011 Rose, 2013 Melange Rouge – a left bank Bordeaux-style blend leading with Cabernet Sauvignon, 2012 Williams Gap red blend leading with Cabernet Franc, and a 2013 Vidal Blanc.

While my sister, who is growing into her red wines (at the early age of 24!), approved the Melange Rouge, I on the other hand was much more intrigued by the 2012 Williams Gap. With a velvet smooth texture, it was slightly bold but I hear it gets even better with age! And, finally the Vidal Blanc was just as refreshing and crisp as I remember from years ago.

From there, we were on our way to Three Fox. If you know me, you know that I love the small, cozy, friendly, people next door type of vineyards and wineries. These will always be the ones I come back to, without a doubt. And, Three Fox is just that. And, the wines are pretty darn good too. Being half-Italian, my sister and I felt right at home! For $13 we tasted the full line of 10 Italian-style 2013 wines, plus a sparkling chardonnay guest wine.

Of the whites, my favorite was #1 on the list – the Leggero Chardonnay. It’s a simple Chard (which I can appreciate) with a tinge of sweetness similar to what you might get from the first bite of a ripe piece of fruit. A close second is the Calabrese Pinot Grigio. Estate grown, this Pinot Grigio is done in true Northern Italian style. It really grew on me, especially the light hints of olives and capers.

Of the reds, my favorites were the Volpe Sangiovese which has a full body made from 75% of estate grown Sangiovese and 25% Cabernet Franc. Next up for me was the Piemontese Nebbiolo. It has a beautiful ruby red color and the structure was dry yet smooth and refreshing.

And, finally, it wouldn’t be a critique without another Sister Approved wine! She was a big fan of the Rosso Dolce Chambourcin, a sweet desert red with 6-8% residual sugar, but we both found the sweetness very subtle and enjoyable. Our time there ended with awesome conversation with the owner, and an eagerness to get back really soon when the weather is right, so we can enjoy the outdoors and their spectacular views!!

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