Sweely Estate Winery

On a recent trip to Charlottesville we planned a stop at Sweely Estate Winery. Previously known as Acorn Hill, Sweely Estate is not just a tasting room but an entire hospitality center for events of all kinds. The 16,000 sq. ft. center includes a tasting room, retail boutique, art gallery, culinary center, wine library and barrel room, and a large space for large events. The building is impressive. The estate sits on more than 300 acres of land with 40 acres in vine.

We made our way to the tasting bar and were lucky to be the only ones there for a tasting. Our tasting associate walked us through the list of wines available for tasting. We tasted six whites and four reds. Most of the whites and some of the reds are fermented in stainless-steel. Those that are oak aged spend time in French oak barrels. White wine drinkers, like sometimes guest blogger Michael Tyler, might enjoy the Wolftown White Blend 2007. It’s a semi-sweet blend of chardonnay and vidal blanc with a nice floral nose. After tasting the wines and asking many questions of our tasting associate, we decided on a glass of the 1867 Meritage 2006.

With glass in hand and notebook ready we headed to the patio to enjoy the views and the 1867 Meritage 2006. This wine is named after the old barn on the property that was built in 1867. It’s a blend of 75% merlot and 25% cabernet franc. It spends 12 months in new French oak barrels. We noted blackberry and black cherry on nose. In the mouth we were treated to blackberry and black cherry with a spicy edge and a long finish. Warren noted the color as dark garnet. This one would pair well with a thick steak.

After enjoying the 1867 Meritage 2006, we walked around the hospitality center to see the art gallery and all the amenities…all quite spectacular. Be sure to plan to stop at Sweely Estate Winery the next time you find yourself headed toward Charlottesville. And be sure to tell them Virginia Wine Time sent you!