Wineries in the Charlottesville Area You Should Visit this Winter
Visiting a winery is one of the safest things to do while on vacation this winter. Also one of the most fun things! Many of the wineries in Albemarle County have gone above and beyond to provide ample distanced seating and one-of-a-kind experiences for visitors. Below you'll see some of the elegant solutions they've come up with. Many of these wineries have a bed and breakfast or small inn on site too, making them great places to both sip and stay. Though we've been fortunate to enjoy a lot of snowfall this winter, the sight of bright green spring leaves spreading up the slopes of the Blue Ridge Mountains and flowers blooming across the city will be most welcome. Until then, these wineries should be high on anyone's list for their unique amenities, stunning mountain views, and award-winning wines.
Located just south of Charlottesville, Blenheim Vineyards has been making sustainable Virginia-grown wines now for over 10 years. Outdoor tables are available by reservation only Thursday through Sunday, 11:00am to 4:00pm. Seating options include tables under the clear-top tent pictured below, on their deck under an umbrella, or seats around a fire pit out on their lawn.
Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards is a spacious, culinary vineyard within easy driving distance of downtown Charlottesville. Reservations, which can be made via Resy, are recommended should you wish to secure indoor or Veranda seating. The tasting room is open Tuesday to Sunday, 11:00am to 6:00pm. Unique to Pippin Hill is the extent of their culinary garden. Expect excellent eats in addition to choice wines.
There is plenty of room to spread out at King Family Vineyards, one of the largest and most popular vineyards in Albemarle County. Here you'll have sweeping, unobstructed views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. King Family Vineyards, along with Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyard and Glass House Winery, made Virginia is for Lovers' latest list of top cozy winter wineries!
Speaking of Glass House...
It doesn't get much cozier than the tasting room at Glass House Winery. Here you can enjoy fine chocolates made on-site, as well as live music and, occasionally, food from a food truck. There are nine private outdoor tables as well, each equipped with a propane heater. The tasting room is open from noon to 5:30pm Wednesday to Sunday, with extended hours (until 5:00pm) Fridays.
Thatch Winery is a short drive south of Charlottesville on scenic Route 20. Reservations for indoor seating are now available at Thatch Winery. No reservations are required to sit outside -- first come, first served. Enjoy their wine by the glass, bottle or flight. The tasting room is open 11am-5pm Thursday through Sunday, weather permitting.
Gabriele Rausse Winery is just off the beaten path, and well worth the drive. Gabriele Rausse, after whom the winery is named, is known as the Father of Virginia Wine. He helped what are today Barboursville Vineyards and Jefferson Vineyards get started before establishing Gabriele Rausse Winery, the first winery of his own. Tastings are conducted outside on a first come, first served basis. Covered seating is available but limited. Until further notice, Gabriele Rausse will be open Sunday from 10:00am to 4:00pm, Thursday from 11:00am to 5:00pm, and Friday from 11:00am to 5:00pm.
Keswick is decked out with a spacious clear-top tent this winter. Seating is also available in their courtyard and on their lawn, should you wish to bring your own chairs. No reservations are required during the week. On Saturdays, please be sure to call the tasting room directly at 434.244.3341 ext 105 to make a reservation in advance of your visit.
Small batch wines are something of a specialty here. In addition to wine, the Tasting Room and Taphouse at Mount Ida Reserve also offers a variety of craft beers. If you can't decide whether you want to visit a winery or brewery, this is the place for you! No reservations required. For the latest on hours and seating options, click here.
Come spring, we expect that most, if not all, of our wineries will be open for safe, socially-distanced tastings. Jefferson Vineyards, for example, will reopen March 10th -- they celebrate their 40th anniversary this year! Your safety will remain our number one priority at Albemarle County wineries as we move into the spring and summer months. While you're here, should you prefer to stay in a hotel rather than at one of the wineries where you can both sip and stay, there are plenty of options for you to choose from. Click here for our full list of hotels, and here for our full list of bed and breakfasts.