Experience the Monticello Wine Tour

Posted on April 8, 2013 by


The Charlottesville area is seen as a wine lovers’ dream with dozens of wineries in a 30-mile radius. So, it can be hard to get out and visit them all. For those who haven’t had the chance to venture out and visit the vineyards that dot the region, 29 of them will descend upon Charlottesville’s Downtown Mall to offer a taste of their Virginia wines.

taste of monticello logo

The second annual Taste of Monticello Wine Trail Festival will be held April 13 at the nTelos Wireless Pavilion. Gates open at noon for VIP guests, with general admission starting at 1 p.m.

The event, which attracted more than 2,300 people last year, is expected to be even bigger this year.

Jackie Knight, director of marketing for event promoter Red Light Management, said the festival is expected to bring in more than 3,000 wine lovers this year. There will also be more vineyards and vendors this year, she said.

In addition, there will be a lot of specialty food provided by Whole Foods and other vendors, as well as a wine of the month table. Brown Mercedes-Benz, a major sponsor of the festival, will even showcase some cars at the event.

Winos can also groove to live local tunes during the event. At noon, Charlottesville musician Greg Howard will play his Chapman Stick. The instrument is similar to an electric guitar, but has a longer neck with up to 12 strings, as well as a unique playing method and sound. The Olivarez Trio will perform their gypsy jazz from 2 to 6 p.m.


“Hopefully, there will just be something for everyone to do,” Knight said.

Blankets and lawn chairs are encouraged!

“A lot of people bring a picnic, grab a little bottle of wine and make a day of it,” Knight said.

For those who want to learn more about selecting quality wine, specials courses will be offered at the festival, ranging from tasting wine, reading labels and food pairings.

Tickets for the festival are $29 in advance and $35 the day of the event. VIP tickets are $75. Get your tickets today!

Knight said most of the wineries participating in the festival will have tiered levels for sampling, with VIPs given the opportunity to try select wines not available to the general public. The VIP package also includes parking and exclusive hors d’oeuvres provided by C&O Restaurant.

Admission to the festival includes a glass for wine sampling with VIPs also getting a special blanket.

By Darren Sweeney, Guest Writer

Posted in: cheers