Planning a Spring birthday party enticed us to visit Corcoran Vineyards, one of our favorite Virginia wineries. Not only are the proprietors, Lori & Jim Corcoran, friends, but they craft excellent wines. Just look at their medal collection. With a tasting room built in the 1750's, a pond, and rolling vineyards; we thought this would be a great venue for our son's birthday. The major question on our minds: was it too far for parents to drive? The answer came quickly as we had trouble finding a parking space. For a late February weekend, the winery was packed. Obviously distance was not a factor.
The high volume of visitors may have been influenced by the appearance of Mary Watson Delauder, who was pouring and signing bottles of her Mary's Cuvee. This wine was a collaborate between Mary and Lori, where they basically sampled from different barrels to concoct a suitable blend. Predominately Cabernet Franc and Merlot, the wine also contains a little Tannat which contributes an earthiness to the wine. It's a real nice blend - fruit forward from the Cabernet France with a "herbish" tail from the Tannat. There was only a few cases left and wines were moving fast, so they may be sold out already. The other red wines are just as good: the varietal Cabernet Franc, Chambourcin, Malbec, and Meritage (Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot). The Malbec is our favorite. For whites, all you need is the Chardonnay. Particularly since their Viognier is also sold out. The Chardonnay was aged in neutral oak and stainless steel to produce a nice wine. There's just enough oak at the finish to balance the fruit and acidity. They had also brought our for the day their semi-dry whites: Traminette and Seyval Blanc. The Traminette is drier that contains the spiciness associated with the grape. The Seyval Blanc is sweet lemons - enough sweetness to make this a dessert wine, but we have friends who down the bottle in one sitting. We can't wait to try the wines again at the birthday party. Hopefully the weather will cooperate.