Fun in the sun at Manassas Wine & Jazz Festival

On Sunday we attended the 2nd Annual Manassas Wine and Jazz festival located in historic downtown Manassas. Although the weather was very warm, it was still quite nice, and like any appetizing food paired with a fine wine, the combination of live music, Virginia wine, friends, people alike and delicious food made for a wonderful Sunday spent.

On hand were twelve Virginia wineries ready to pour and tell you all about their great wines. There was a generous amount of delectable and decadent treats to sample, try, and buy if you so desired. The bands that performed all had great sounds, and were the perfect compliment to a well-planned and organized event.

After a round of sampling, we had lunch and selected two wines appropriate for the event: Waterford’s newly 2005 Seyval Blanc and Pearmund’s 2005 Riesling released April 2006. There were many other great selections, but these were great sippers given the warm day, and everyone enjoyed them thoroughly during the tasting round.

Niki, Karen, Pete (on the phone ordering wine)

Pete and Dezel

One of the 5 live bands performing

While basting in the fun, I had a chance to converse with Gordon Murchie of the Vinifera Wine Growers Association. I have heard him speak at several festivals and events in the past. He is a great resource on Virginia Wine and wine in general, and it was a pleasure chatting with him. Gordon mentioned that he would be speaking at the 31st Annual Virginia Wine Festival 2006 in Leesburg, an event in September that I look forward to attending.

Other things to note from the event:

  • Opera House Gourmet, located in downtown Manassas offers a weekly tasting of select Virginia wines every Friday. They also stock select Virginia wines and many gourmet food items to pair.

  • Gray Ghost dessert wine, 2005 Adieu won everyone’s palate over in the group; with intense and lingering flavors of apricot, we were committed to taking some home.

  • Keep Waterford Vineyards in scope; everyone truly enjoyed their newly released 2005 Seyval Blanc. They are producing some quality wines and have plans for an upcoming Malbec to add to their list of fine reds, and a new tasting room to boast. Check their web page for updates.

  • Pearmund’s new joint effort, Winery at La Grange in Prince William County will open doors August 2006. From what I gather a lot of work has gone into this effort and I expect only good things to come. For teasers they will offer a Reserve Brut, Petit Verdot Port, Meritage, and several other varietals. Check their web page for updates and the picture link to get an idea of some of the work that went into the development of this winery.

  • Look out for Tarara’s summer concert series beginning July 1st from 6p-9: 30p. We attended at least 7 shows last year and it makes for a nice Saturday evening.

In closing, even though the Manassas festival is on a smaller scale than most Virginia wine festivals, its becoming one of our favorites to attend.

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