Food and Wine Weekend Getaway in Virginia Wine Country
1Just an hour outside of Washington, DC, you'll find a riverside paradise at Tarara Winery, where the tasting room is banked by country gardens. Take in the sights with a first sip of their top-selling white, an alluring fruity blend of varietals.
2Swing into the town of Leesburg, where the historic downtown is truly walkable, to indulge in dessert before dinner. At Mom's Apple Pie Bakery go for the shop's namesake to guarantee satisfaction or try any other of its more than 20 varieties.
3Pause for a pitch-perfect New American dinner, with local wine pairings, at Tuscarora Mill. The smoked duck breast and Moroccan-style chicken are particularly memorable.
1Pick up coffee and homemade pastries from the Tuscarora Mill spinoff South Street Under. This is also a great spot to stock up on picnic supplies like wild rice and pecan salad and upmarket deli sandwiches (tarragon chicken salad, turkey with shallot mayo), before setting off through Loudoun County's horse and grape country.
2Head a few miles north to Hidden Brook Winery, a log cabin built from the ground up by its owners. The rose pairs well with fruit from roadside farm stands and the tasting room features paintings and jewelry from nearby artists.
3Raise a green glass at family-run Fabbioli Cellars, where organic and sustainable practices are used to grow the grapes behind the unique raspberry and Asian pear wines.
4Head back on the road for a bit south to Delaplane, where you can find more ingredients for a picnic lunch as well as small-plate food pairings during a tasting trip to the dog-friendly Barrel Oak winery. Don't miss the gorgeous views from its outdoor patio.
5Move on to Three Fox Vineyards, which proclaims itself "Tuscany in Virginia" and does not disappoint in the Sangiovese department. A rollicking game of bocce ball on the lawn might tempt you away from the wine tasting table.
6Dining at the Inn at Little Washington is a life-changing experience for many a foodie, thanks to the stellar service and multi-course delights dished out by legendary chef Patrick O'Connell. If you can nail down a reservation here in advance, set aside several hours and about $350/person as a minimum; but don't try to stop by without a table already booked.
7If you're shut out at the inn, don't despair — continue on to Winchester for a brief break from the vino with a cold beer and a creamy bite of the inventive fried avocado roll at Awabi Sushi, located on the highly strollable downtown promenade of Old Town.
1Stop for a three-course prix fixe brunch at the Ashby Inn in Paris, where you will face the most unenviable choice in wine country: the hand-battered buttermilk fried chicken on top of a parmesan waffle, or the creamy pork with poached egg?
2Work off the stellar meal with a ride along the C&O Canal trail after taking a short drive north to the Maryland side of the Potomac to rent bikes from River Trail Outfitters. (If you bring a bottle of wine in your backpack for an al fresco glass, we won't tell.)
3On the way back to town, swing back through Leesburg to Vintage 50, where the local brews and wine are as good as the shrimp and grits, for a quick lunch.