Brad Hansen, the winemaker and GM from Prince Michel Vineyard and Winery is joining me in studio this week. Prince Michel is located off Route 29 in Leon just south of Culpepper and they have been a mainstay on the Virginia wine scene since the early 80’s.
Brad is an esteemed winemaker compiling more than 400 award-winning wines to his name over the past two decades. He’ll tell us all about the Prince Michel and Radian River collections. Prince Michel has plenty of offerings for just about every palate and price point. Plus, I am super excited because we are sampling one of Brad’s brand new releases – the Pét-Nat.
It’s an ancient technique that is making a big comeback. In fact Bon Appetitrecently referred to Pét-Nat as Champagne’s cool kid sister. Discover the charm of this unique bubbly with Brad Hansen on this episode of Crystal Palate’s Wine Country.
I love the crisp, refreshing burst of autumn air on a cool October morning. In my humble opinion, there is no better way to celebrate fall than by taking a drive along the winding roads of the Blue Ridge Mountains and looking out at the rolling hills that span the heart of Virginia Wine Country. This time of year conjures up images of ripe, plump grapes, a bountiful harvest and vibrant colors bursting from the trees that paint a magnificent landscape throughout Central Virginia. For those of us lucky enough to call Virginia home, this is simply a way of life.
I had the privilege of living in Charlottesville for a few years and the lifestyle simply can’t be beat. Virginia boasts more than 200 wineries with nearly half of them located in the Monticello AVA (American Viticultural Area). I would highly recommend you visit the Charlottesville area to experience firsthand why Virginia has become the East Coast destination of choice for wine lovers. President Thomas Jefferson, America’s first wine connoisseur saw tremendous promise in this fertile land and his lifelong dream of making Virginia a world class wine destination is finally being realized two centuries later. Come experience all of the beauty and serenity this region has to offer. Crystal Palate has you covered with recommendations on some of our favorite wineries, Inns and restaurants. Swirl & sip your way through the regions wine tasting rooms, savor sumptuous truffles at Gearharts Chocolates, dine at some of the area’s finest restaurants, relax in luxury at some of the most beautiful Inns in the country and perhaps take in a football game at UVA. Round out your visit with a trip to Carter’s Mountain for a little apple picking. There is a little something for everyone here. So what are you waiting for? Thomas Jefferson’s homeland is calling your name.
Vineyards to Visit:
Charlottesville Area (Monticello AVA)
Barboursville Vineyards – Founded in 1976, the Zonin family has played a formidable role in establishing Virginia as a world class wine destination.
Cardinal Point Winery – Nestled in the heart of Virginia Wine Country you will find this cozy & quaint tasting room. The A6 is a must try.
Jefferson Vineyards – Jefferson may have never produced a bottle of wine in his 30 year effort. Two centuries later, the vines at his estate are flourishing.
Keswick Vineyards – Breathtaking scenery. The 2002 Viognier Reserve won best white wine in America.
King Family Vineyards – King Family has become synonymous with Polo and the family is known for their philanthropy efforts. They also make great wine and were awarded the Best Winery in 2013 in the C-Ville’s, Best of C-ville edition.
Moss Vineyards – A newcomer to the Virginia wine scene. Barry Moss is producing some beautifully balanced Bordeaux style blends.