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Tomahawk Mill Vineyard & Winery
by
Kathy Sullivan

Tomahawk Mill Vineyard and WineryMarch 2011
Summary: Tomahawk Mill Vineyard & Winery offers views of an old gristmill, pond, vineyards, as well as several wines to taste and friendliness. Most amazing are the buildings for the winery and wine storage.

Tomahawk Mill Vineyard & Winery, owned by Corky and Nancy Medaglia, is a most unique winery to visit. The property includes a home, two silos, an old gristmill, and vineyards. As we parked and jotted down the GPS for the winery, Corky was outside waving and shouting a big hello. First we went to visit the vineyards that slope towards the millpond. The water from the pond flows over a dam and then through a conduit under the mill. Mentioning that we had been to gristmills before and had not seen the water running under a mill, Corky noted that this was unique.

Tomahawk Mill Vineyard and WineryThe property was once the home and mill of Confederate veteran James Anderson. Anderson built the mill and opened it to farmers in 1888. Ten years later his son took over the mill until 1975. Walter Crider purchased the mill and ran the gristmill until 1988. Walter then planted several varieties of grapes. In 1996 Corky and Nancy purchased the property leaving the metropolitan area behind.

Tomahawk Mill Vineyard and WineryVineyards

The vineyard has almost three acres of Chardonnay, Riesling, Cabernet Sauvignon, Vidal Blanc, Concord, and Pinot Noir. Corky knows his grapevines almost as individuals. He notices what each one needs. The vineyards are on a slope and the temperatures vary every few feet horizontally and vertically. Corky discovered that an option to using expensive treatments for a vine that is splitting, he can paint the vine and it will help to protect it for several years.

As one stands by the vineyards and looks towards the gristmill and cascading waters, it feels like “a little piece of heaven.” During our late March visit, vines were beginning to push forth leaves.

Tomahawk Mill Vineyard and WineryWinery

Corky has made use of two side-by-side silos. Inside one is the winery. Nearby the second silo is home to the winery lab and storage for cases of wine. The inside walls of both silos have been covered. Visitors will remember the uniqueness of converting two silos into a winery.

Tomahawk Mill Vineyard and WineryThe tasting room is in the old gristmill. Much of the equipment that had been used when the gristmill was running can still be seen. When Corky can take time from the winery and vineyard, he hopes to restore the mill.

Tomahawk Mill Wines

Tomahawk Mill Vineyard and WineryCabernet Franc 2010 was a dark purple to black color. The wine had a dark fruit aroma and the taste was very fruity with dark fruit notes. The finish had mild tannins with a touch of oak. Sergeant Anderson’s Red 2009 was a dry Concord wine. The dark sienna wine offered Concord aroma and taste. The finish was crisp and dry with a Concord taste. This wine is part of the Civil War Sesquicentennial Commemoration.Tobacco Road Blues 2009 was named to honor the tobacco growers in the region. This wine, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Chambourcin offered dark fruit and oak notes with mild tannins. Chambourcin 2009 was a dark sienna color. The aroma and taste offered red berry nuances. The finish was crisp with mild tannins and berry notes. Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 was produced with Tomahawk Mill grapes. Aged in American oak, the wine was a dark ruby with notes of dark fruit. The finish offered mild tannins and was very fruity.

Corky makes peach wine that reminds one of fresh peaches both on the aroma and taste. This wine is bottled, awaiting the labels and will be available for sale soon. The apple wine was excellent reminding one of a bite of fresh apple. The suggested pairings for this were pork, cheese or dessert.

Mead is also produced at Tomahawk Hill Winery . Earl of Chatham Mead was a gold color. The aroma offered honeysuckle and other floral notes. Honeysuckle and sweetness were on the taste. The mead dried on the finish.

Events at the Mill

Annual Summer Festival: This festival is at Tomahawk Hill Vineyards and Winery and includes several other wineries. Activities can include hayrides, crafters, food vendors and clowns. A Halloween event, The Haunted Grist Mill, is for adults only and requires reservations. Holiday Open House offers mulled wine, light refreshments and specials for last minute holiday shoppers. The winery also hosts a barrel tasting event.

When you visit Tomahawk Mill Vineyard and Winery, carry your camera and take a picnic lunch to enjoy near the water.

Tomahawk Mill Vineyard & Winery
9221 Anderson Mill Road
Chatham, Virginia 24531

GPS: N36º 52.940’ W79º 32.391’

 

 

 

 


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