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Grace Estate Winery
by
Kathy Sullivan

Grace Estate WinerySummary: Grace Estate Winery, a member of the Monticello Wine Trail, welcomes families. Food bites are available in the tasting room.The winery is a popular venue for private events including weddings. In 2017 almost every summer weekend was booked for a wedding.

The Grace Estate vineyards were established by Mt. Juliet Farm in the late 1990s. In 2006 the Grace family bought the farm property including the vineyards. By 2010 the Grace family built the winery and began producing wine. The spacious tasting room was built in 2014.

The owner of Grace Estate Winery, John Grace, has hired an efficient staff and allows the staff the day to day winemaking decisions. He was described as a “hands off” owner.

Tasting Room

The spacious tasting room is located in a two-story light gray building with a metal roof. Inside be sure to notice the creative use of wine barrels for ceiling lights. A brick fireplace with brown leather seating offers a cozy spot to enjoy a glass of wine on a cool day. Oak barrels topped with circular glass tops provide more room for tasting Grace Estate wines. On warmer days enjoy the spacious deck filled with wrought iron tables, chairs as well as umbrellas. Perhaps you would enjoy the picnic tables spread out under the nearby trees. Families with children enjoy the outdoor experience. Dog owners may also bring their well-loved canines with them.

At the the end of the large room there is a three-sided tasting counter. This counter can accommodate several visitors. A selection of foods are available for purchase. Plan to buy an assortment from different cheeses, salami, baguettes, fudge and more.

Grace Estate Winery     Grace Estate Winery

Estate Vineyards

The Grace Estate Winery has 52 acres of onsite vineyards. The grape varieties include Cabernet Franc (pictured below left), Malbec, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Tannat, Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, Petit Manseng, Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier and Vidal Blanc (pictured below right). The winery uses a portion of these productive grapes to produce 2,000 cases. Excess grapes are sold to other wineries. According to the staff, 2014 was a good year for the grapes on the property.

Grace Estate Winery     Grace Estate Winery

Grace Estate Wines

All of the Grace Estate wines are produced on the property with a mix of old world styles and some creativity. All wines tasted are in the Monticello AVA.

Grace Estae WineryThe 2015 Estate Chardonnay was produced with Chardonnay and a splash of Vidal Blanc and Viognier. The wine was aged in French oak. The wine was a dark yellow color. The taste offered notes of apple and caramel. The full-bodied mouthfeel was accompanied with a taste of apple and pear. The finish was crisp and fruity with some leather and caramel on the finish.

The 2015 Estate Le Gras Cuve was a blend of Vidal Blanc with some Viognier. The wine was a brilliant yellow color. The aroma was crisp with mineral notes. The taste was dry and crisp with a hint of perceived sweetness. The finish was long and crisp. This is a food friendly wine.

Estate Petit Manseng 2015 was a yellow color. The wine was 15.5% alcohol. Aged in Cognac barrels, the wine offered floral and fruity aromas. The taste had tropical fruit notes with some dried yellow fruits. The wine was full-bodied.

Tannat 2013 was a dark ruby color. The wine had dark fruit notes including blackberries, leather and currants. The taste was full-bodied with very bold tannins. The finish offered fruit notes with some leather.

The Estate Cabernet Franc 2014 was an opaque red/purple color. The aroma included notes of pepper and cherries. The dry taste offered notes of cracked pepper and cherries with leather and baking spices. The wine had medium to bold tannins. The finish was dry and long with notes of pepper and cherry.

The Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 was an opaque purple color. The aroma was of dark berry fruit with light earthy notes. The taste included notes of cassis, blackberries and leather. The wine was full-bodied.

The 2012 Estate Odo was a blend of Tannat and Petit Verdot. The wine was a dark ruby to black color. The wine was produced with separate barrel agings for 16 months, followed by six months of blended barrel aging. The result was a wine with an aroma of dark fruits. The silky mouthfeel was full-bodied. There were dark fruit notes of black cherry, blackberry and black plums. The wine had kissing tannins. The finish was very fruity with some leather and spice.The 2012 Estate Odo was a blend of Tannat and Petit Verdot. The wine was a dark ruby to black color. The wine was produced with separate barrel agings for 16 months, followed by six months of blended barrel aging. The result was a wine with an aroma of dark fruits. The silky mouthfeel was full-bodied. There were dark fruit notes of black cherry, blackberry and black plums. The wine had kissing tannins. The finish was very fruity with some leather and spice.The 2014 Estate Adeliza (Petit Manseng) with 30 g/L of residual sugar is a dessert wine. The wine was a yellow-gold color. The taste was of daisies and honeysuckle. The wine was full-bodied with fruity, sweet notes. Th aftertaste lingered. Production included aging the wine in 30-year-old Cognac barrels. The wine had 16.4% alcohol.

Events at Grace Estate Winery

In addition to private events and weddings, Grace Estate Winery offers visitors “Friday Evening” with local musicians and food vendors. Music on Saturdays takes place April through November.

When adding your visit to Grace Estate Winery, plan to spend some extra time outside on the patio or at the picnic tables to enjoy a relaxing wine experience. Plan to purchase a charcuterie tray from an assortment of choices.

Grace Estate Winery
5273 Mount Juliet Farm
Crozet, Virginia, 22932

GPS: N38º 06.8501’ W78º 40.0356’

 

 

Article written September 2017.




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