Trips&Sips: Taste of Monticello Wine Festival Returns
Each year The Taste of Monticello Wine Trail Festival, an established spring tradition in Charlottesville – presented by Mercedes Benz of Charlottesville – returns to offer attendees an opportunity to see what the Monticello AVA (American Viticulture Area) has to offer. Now in their 7th year, the festival is expanding to six days: Monday, May 7 through Saturday, May 12.
The wine festival is a partnership between the Monticello Wine Trail and Sprint Pavilion and offers events that will take place at the Jefferson Theater, many area wineries and restaurants, and Sprint Pavilion.
Despite representing a mere 10% of Virginia’s wineries, wines associated with the Monticello AVA received nearly half of the Competition’s Gold medals. Additionally, seven of the wines in the 2018 Governors Cup case was produced by wineries on the Monticello Wine Trail.
This year’s festival will feature 26 participating regional wineries and vineyards, including:
Cardinal Point Vineyard & Winery
Chestnut Oak Vineyard
Delfosse Vineyards & Winery
Early Mountain Vineyards
First Colony Winery
Flying Fox Vineyard
Gabriele Rausse Winery
Glass House Winery
Grace Estate Winery
Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyard
Renard Florence Vineyard
Stone Mountain Vineyards
Veritas Vineyard & Winery
Wisdom Oak Winery
Tickets go on sale this Friday, March 23 at 10 a.m. and will be available at monticellowinetrailfestival.com and the Charlottesville’s Visitor Center on the downtown mall. Patrons will again have the opportunity to enjoy a variety of events available with optional VIP upgrades.
Year after year this event has proven to be one of the unique and desirable Virginia wine festivals. Above all, the festival lends a unique twist to the typical wine festival, by establishing a goal to have only owners or winemakers do the wine pouring.
“The Taste of Monticello Wine Trail Festival is a great opportunity to experience a wide variety of what the Monticello AVA has to offer. It’s a chance to find your new favorite winery or wine, and our chance to share what we’ve been working on”, MWT President George Hodson.
2018 Schedule of Events & Ticket Information
Monday, May 7: Monticello Cup Awards
The Jefferson Theater
6-10 p.m. | Tickets are $49
An exciting event for the wine enthusiast, taste award-winning wines from the 2018 Monticello Cup Wine Competition alongside the wine growers and winemakers who made them. The night ends with the competition results for the Top 6 wines and winner of the prestigious Monticello Cup for the overall highest scoring wine.
Tuesday, May 8 – Thursday, May 10: Winemaker Dinners
A series of collaborative dinners between local restaurants and wineries.
For event details and locations, visit monticellowinetrailfestival.com. Reservations are required for each dinner. Contact participating wineries.
Friday, May 11: The 3rd Annual Monticello AVA Sparkling Brunch
Afton Mountain Vineyards – Pavilion
10 a.m.-Noon | Tickets are $55
The 3rd Annual Monticello AVA Sparkling Brunch will be held at the Afton Mountain Vineyards’ pavilion and feature sparkling wines from five area wineries all perfectly paired with a farm to table inspired menu.
Friday, May 11: The 2nd Annual Rosé Lunch
11 a.m.-1 p.m. | Tickets are $45
The Monticello AVA Rosé Lunch will move to Blenheim Vineyards this year and begin with a sparkling rosé toast! Next, four rosés will be paired with their own small plate making up a summery four-course lunch.
Friday, May 11: Winery Tours and Tastings
For event details and locations, visit monticellowinetrailfestival.com. These events will have limited tickets available depending on location. Please contact participating winery for more information.
Saturday, May 12: The Grand Tasting
1:30-5:30 p.m. (VIP ticket holders gain early entry at 12:30 p.m.)
Tickets (ages 12 and under are Free):
General Admission: $29 through April 15, $35 after April 15, $40 at gate
General Admission Designated Driver or Under 21: $10
VIP Designated Driver or Under 21: $25
Tasting event at Sprint Pavilion featuring more than 25 local wineries and live entertainment. An exclusive VIP ticket is available and offers catered food and an opportunity for sampling exclusive wines from each winery.
Wine tastings will be limited to one flight of tastings per winery with the purchase of your ticket. Extra wine can be purchased by the glass or bottle.
Complete schedule of all events, information and menus available at monticellowinetrailfestival.com.
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