Jefferson Vineyards

Virginia wine country has no stronger advocate than the nation's third president: Jefferson expressed his fondness for the fruits of the vineyard — "Good wine is a necessity of life for me," he is quoted as saying — and wine production was part of his plan for his plantation of 5,000 acres. Jefferson's viticulturilist put the first plantings in the ground in 1774, but the timing was terrible, as the Revolutionary War soon stopped the grape-growing efforts. More than two centuries later, in 1981, Monticello's caretakers planted vineyards again. (Six years later, Monticello was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, a prestigious international recognition.)

For the tasting room, Jefferson Vineyards' dry white wines include a 2010 Pinot Gris, 2010 Chardonnay, 2009 Chardonnay Reserve, and 2010 Viognier. Its semi-dry white wines are a Vin Blanc and 2008 Vin de Trois. Its dry reds are a Vin Rouge, 2008 Merlot, 2009 Petit Verdot, and 2008 Meritage. (In addition, Jefferson Vineyards has seven "library wines" not included in the tasting fee.)

Jefferson Vineyards (see map) 1353 Thomas Jefferson Parkway Charlottesville, VA 22902 (434) 977-3042

Open daily 9am-5pm