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Stone Tower Winery
by
Kathy and Terry Sullivan

Stone Tower WinerySummary: Stone Tower Winery is located just outside Leesburg, Virginia in the bucolic countryside. The winery includes vineyards, quality wines, hospitality and entertainment. The owners, Mike and Kristie Huber, want people to discover the winery by “word of mouth.” People who visit the winery will find it to be a gem of a winery. There are two tasting areas. The beautiful barn tasting facility (pictured right) and the newest event and tasting building opened in late 2015.

Stone Tower Winery is on Hogback Mountain in the countryside of Leesburg, Virginia. It is a delightful winery with extensive vineyards to visit. The philosophy of the winery is encompassed in the tag line, “Joy in Every Bottle.” We met Lacey Huber, the second generation of the Hubers, at the large building known as the Harvest Barn. The tasting building is open on three sides and offers several tasting counters. The Harvest Barn tasting area is children and pet friendly.

The Owners' Wine Journey

We learned the story of Stone Tower Winery from Lacey who is enthusiastic about the winery, vineyards and her parents’ story. The winery was the brain storm of Mike and Kristie Huber who realized over a glass of wine that the property was an ideal location for vineyards. Lacey said, “Mike and Kristie love wine.” Lacey added with a smile that Kristie enjoys entertaining and has always been “the hostest with the mostest.”

Stone Tower WineryStone Tower WineryVineyards

One day, while her parents were on the hillside, they envisioned how vineyards would look on the rolling hills. From that first recognition, the idea snowballed into a vineyard and a winery. The first vineyards were planted in 2009 with five acres of Viognier and Chardonnay. The following year another 15 acres of grapevines were planted including: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Merlot and Tannat varieties. In the last two years more vines were planted for a total of 55 acres. Future plans include reaching 90 acres of vineyards. On the day of our September visit, vineyard workers were finishing the Chardonnay harvest for the day.

 

New Winery Facility

Stone Tower WineryNot far away from the Harvest Barn tasting room, a large sophisticated facility opened in 2015 and offers wine tastings and several event areas, both large and small. The building was built from sycamore trees on the property and stones from the fields. The Stone Tower name refers to the land which was “super rocky.” The Wild Boar Hall is for wine club members.

The main tasting room is very large with a U-shaped tasting counter and many seating and table sections. The floors of the tasting room were made of reclaimed wood. A fireplace is a focal point for one of the sections with several chairs and a leather sofa. This will prove to be a popular location during the cooler months when a fire is roaring and sipping wine becomes a passion. Beyond the main tasting room there is a private area for tastings and events. This area has tables with leather chairs, and seating areas with sofas and chairs.

 

Stone Tower Winery     Stone Tower Winery

Outside this new structure there is abundant seating with several groupings of tables and chairs. This stone patio is extensive.

Stone Tower WineryThe lower level of the new facility is below the tasting room and the patio. One area is known as the “Wedding Zone.” One of the most striking features is the Ball Room with wood floors and beautiful vineyard views. The ballroom would make a picture perfect venue for receptions and wine/dance pairings.

The barrel room is located below the large patio along a walkway connecting the Ball Room with the winery production area. Barrels line both sides of the walkway.

Throughout the recently built tasting and event facility, a great deal of attention has been paid to the details of the building. Numerous seating arrangements make this a delightful spot to taste and enjoy wines. This newest building was designed primarily for adults although children may attend specially designated events.

Stone Tower WineryStone Tower WineryWhile in the production area, we briefly met Tim Crowe, the winemaker, who was in the vineyard helping with the 2015 grape harvest. Tim has experience working at wineries in California, New Zealand and France. Stone Tower produces two brands of wines. The Stone Tower Estate wines are produced with 100 percent estate grown fruit. The Wild Boar brand wines are produced with grapes sourced from other vineyards.

The winery has oak barrels, stainless steel tanks, and a concrete tank. It also has some oak tanks that have a cut away glass strip several inches wide. This allows the winemaking staff to view the contents in the tank. Bins of Chardonnay grapes, just harvested, were awaiting Tim’s crew to start the winemaking process.

Stone Tower Wines

Back in the Harvest Barn we tasted Stone Tower wines with Kevin Swity, the brand ambassador for Stone Tower.

Stone Tower WineryThe Wild Boar Sauvignon Blanc 2014 was produced with grapes sourced from California. The wine was produced in stainless steel tanks and new French neutral oak and a concrete egg. The wine was a light yellow color with an aroma of a tropical fruit salad. The taste offered notes of citrus, notably grapefruit, and melon. The finish was crisp and fruity with the fruit yielding to some mineral especially chalk. The Wild Boar Sauvignon Blanc is one of the winery’s most popular wines. Suggested pairings included fresh salads, scallops and goat cheese. Wine enthusiasts will also enjoy this wine as an aperitif on the porch or patio.

Stone Tower WineryThe Estate Chardonnay 2014 was a light yellow color that was aged for 10 months in 60 percent new French oak and 40 percent in one-year-old oak. The light yellow colored wine offered notes of apple and pear with some vanilla. The mouthfeel was very smooth. The finish was crisp with a fruit aftertaste yielding to caramel.

The 2013 Wild Boar Malbec was primarily Malbec with a splash of Cabernet Sauvignon, Tannat, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. The translucent ruby colored wine offered an aroma of dark fruits. The taste had notes of black cherries and blackberries. The mouthfeel was smooth with a medium/full-body. The wine had silky tannins. The finish was crisp and fruity with some leather. Wild Boar Sanglier Noble 2013 was a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Malbec. Sanglier refers to boar. The translucent ruby colored wine had an aroma of blackberries and a taste of blackberries with a hint of plums. The wine offered bold tannins. The finish was crisp and fruity.

Wine Club

The Stone Tower Winery wine club has 1,700 members. Every three months, members receive a three pack of Stone Tower wines.

Visitors will want to visit Stone Tower Winery and taste the wines while enjoying the views of rolling hills and vineyards. Both tasting buildings have numerous outdoor seating arrangements. This is a winery that you will not want to leave.

Stone Tower Winery
19925 Hogback Mountain Rd
Leesburg, Virginia 20175

GPS: N39º 03.798’ W77º 38.088’

 

Article written October 2015



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