The Williamsburg Tasting Trail, have you been yet? A vacation in our household is not complete without a slight foray to the Alcohol; side. If you follow along at all you know we love exploring a great vineyard. Enjoy raising a glass in a craft brewery. And yes have been known to sample a taste or two if we find a distillery. Well Williamsburg has it all no doubt about it. Two Distilleries, Five Williamsburg Breweries, five Williamsburg wineries and even a Meadery yep you read that correctly.
Also in the area but not on the list a Hard Lemonade Store. Never let it be said there is nothing to do in Williamsburg. . We made it our mission to sample as much as we could, all in the interest of the blog of course. Could we test out a few spots and maybe provide an open and honest review. Well that is what we told ourselves.
Today I thought we would or rather I would provide a quick overview. Expect a more detailed post on each of our Tastings over the next few weeks.
Let’s start the tour shall we. I have tried to organize this by taste not by the actual date of our visit. We have a tendency to shake things up and hop from beer to wine to spirits. Today I thought we would explore Wines, then beer then Spirits if that works for you? I am also slinking to each location so you can check it out before visitng.
- Williamsburg Winery: This was actual our first stop. Also the third visit for Kent and I, we tried this Vineyard the last two times we were in the area. Plus this was located within minutes of our resort. The Williamsburg Winery is the largest vineyard in Virginia. Wow say that five times fast. Offering tours and tastings of its award-winning wines, a vineyard on 300 acres with two excellent dining venues, the Gabriel Archer Tavern and Café Provençal. For a different setting, you can enjoy wine flights, wine by the glass and wine by the bottle at the Williamsburg Winery Tasting Room & Wine Bar in Colonial Williamsburg’s Merchants Square.
Wineries we Missed
- Silver Hand Meadery: The next closet location to the resort was the Meadery. Alas we did not have time to stop in to this Williamsburg Winerybut this a reason to head back to the area right?
- The Colonial Wine Trail: The Colonial Wine Trail features four of Virginia’s best wineries, including the Williamsburg Winery, and all within a one-hour drive of Williamsburg. No matter where you start or finish your wine trail adventure, you are sure to enjoy great wines, great food and lots of fun along the way. We did not actually hit the four listed Vineyards instead we discovered three more in the general area. Remember this is Linda’s version of a Tasting Trail.
Wineries in Williamsburg Area we Did Visit
- Upper Shirley Vineyards– This is a true one of a kind vineyard. Located on the actual Plantation it is a winery, a restaurant and a wedding venue. Have a taste and check out the amazing view of the James River. Stay tuned and keep watching the blog for an indepth review.
- New Kent Winery– was next on our little tasting trail. Again our third visit. How does one not visit New Kent Winery when you live with a Kent? This place has changed so much since our first visit. New Kent prides themselves on their vast selection of estate grown wines. They also offer small plate selections for you to enjoy while relaxing in any number of quaint seating areas.
- Saude Creek- ready for a scenic drive ending at a spectacular vineyard? Funny tidbit, this historic site was once the meeting place for early travelers, a Colonial Tavern named John Frank’s Ordinary. Today this is home to a beautiful view, great wines and an awesome cat. And that is one story I cannot wait to share.
Next up are the Breweries, we managed to hit three leaving two for a future visit. Or maybe we just ran out of time because as I said there is so much to do in this delightful little town.
- Alewerks Brewing Company: Alewerks has been brewing award-winning beers in Williamsburg since 2006. Weekend tours and guided tastings are offered in its taproom and outdoor biergarten, with up to 16 beers on tap, from year-round offerings to special small batches of great variety, as well as cask ale served weekly. A second 3,000-square-foot tasting room offers 10 beers on tap at the Williamsburg Premium Outlets. Our first visit several years ago we hit the main taproom, this time we were shopping so we check out the Outlet Location.
- The Virginia Beer Company: The Virginia Beer Company is a new brewery, taproom, and beer garden located a mile from the heart of downtown Williamsburg. Virginia Beer Co. focuses on a high quality core lineup and a rotation of limited edition beers. Virginia Beer Cos family friendly taproom and pet friendly outdoor beer garden feature a weekly schedule of food trucks, events, live music, and more! I adored this place. Pets and kids were everywhere but so was an amazing selection of beer and games. Did I mention Corn Hole and how we got hooked. Thanks VBC
- Billsburg Brewery: Opened in the fall the Billsburg Brewery is a destination brewery and event venue in Jamestown that produces small-batch beers using a 10-barrel system. With its location at the James City County Marina, guests can enjoy views of the water along with their craft brews. This Williamsburg Brewery we almost missed. Do not follow your GPS, just walk across the street from Jamestown and there it is. The Marina is lovely too. A great little brewery that has the cutest beer flight trays. Side note you may have noticed the appearance of our new Billsburg Brewery sign at Larmond Estates ( aka our backyard bar). We brought a little piece of the brewery home with us.
The Breweries We Missed
- Brass Cannon Brewing Co.: Brass Cannon Brewing apparently offers kegs, growlers and draft selections in its location. We missed this Williamsburg Brewery but I am hoping i will soon make an appearance in my vacation life.
- Precarious Beer Project: Williamsburg’s newest brewpub was not on the Agenda. Anyone going to fill me in on the deets here?
Finally we get to the distilleries. Honestly can you have a visit to the South without a little Bourbon or Moonshine? I don’t think so.
- Copper Fox Distillery: the Williamsburg distillery opened on July 9, 2016. It produces craft whiskies and gin from hand-malted locally grown barley, smoked and aged with American fruitwoods. Have you been? We did not get to Cooper Fox, but we did get to the next one on the list.
- 8 Shires Distillery: This Williamsburg distillery offers “American Heritage” spirits using 18th-century recipes and techniques: bourbon and gin using Virginia grains, and rum using organic, non-GMO grade-A molasses – just as they would have been made in the early 1700s. Its Williamsburg Bourbon is the only bourbon in the world made with Indian corn. The distillery will be part living-history museum. We took a little tour, sampled a few samples and maybe had a drink or two.
Honourable mention out to a little Hard Lemonade Shop. Larry’s Hard Lemonade in Original or pink. Not a lot of selection just two tasty drinks and a spectacular location on the waterfront. Located a short drive from Jamestown, you will want to add it to the list especially on a hot summer day.