Looking for a blissful, romantic, inexpensive, wine filled weekend only a few hours away from NYC, Philly or D.C.? Save yourself the plane fare to Napa or Sonoma, and check out Loudoun County, VA, only 25 miles outside of Washington D.C. What’s there, you might be asking yourself. Well for starters, you can’t go five minutes in Loudoun County without hitting up multiple vineyards, as well as a variety of breweries, gorgeous farmland, and hiking trails. The area itself is stunning, the people are very welcoming, the price on both wine and accommodations is very reasonable, and it’s absolutely the perfect place to relax and unwind for a weekend in spring, summer and fall.
Where to stay in Loudoun County, VA
One recommendation for a cozy and charming place to stay is: Loudoun Valley Manor. This adorable, massive plantation like B&B property is located on a large plot of land. It’s more than enough land to host a wedding or corporate event (or Trump’s inauguration I’m sure, but I digress). Outside of the house there’s a beautiful patio, and enough patio furniture to seat over thirty people, as well as a nice size grill. It’s a beautiful, calming, outdoor space that’ll have you forgetting about the craziness of work (and life) in no time. Continuing along the path, when you walk up the stairs and into the front doors of the house, you’ll immediately notice the large European style sitting room to your right. Walk through this room and you’ll encounter a lovely screened in porch with seating for ten, including cozy couches, and high top seating. Once you get there, do yourself a favor, and close your eyes as you listen to the cicada bugs and relish in the warm breeze. It sure it blissful! Coming from NYC, it sure is a whole different experience. Now, open your eyes. It’s time to move onto the rest of the house. Backtrack out of the indoor porch and past the sitting room and you’ll see a large, industrial size kitchen, that leads into a nice, comfortable living room. Up the stairs in the living room is the second floor which hosts a bedrooms and full bathrooms for guests. On the third floor of the property, there’s a loft room with a ½ bathroom attached to it. Breakfast is served between nine and ten am the following day, and the owner lives there full time and is happy to assist in any way possible.
As if you weren’t head over heels in love already, on the property itself is a winery called, The Wine Reserve at Waterford. The vineyard is open on Thursday to Sunday and is so charming it looks like it belongs in a catalog of sorts. It’s the kind of place you’d show your girlfriend/fiancé/wife, partner etc. and you know she/he will say, stop immediately, we are going there! The winery is perfect for all seasons and is very inviting. Anyway, when you step into the tasting room, you’ll immediately notice the two large, comfortable, colorful ‘Allison in Wonderland’ like sofa chairs encircling the cozy fireplace by the door. Move past this and you’ll immediately see a tasting bar complete with indoor and outdoor deck seating. The outside back deck has two picnic tables, three to four tables and bar stools aligning the deck bar. They allow you to bring your own food or they offer a cheese and meat plate for sale. The staff here is very hospitable, and the wines are very reasonable. The views from the deck are relaxing and perfect for a warm summer/fall day.8 Chains North Winery. This small, boutique winery comes complete with a tasting room, a corporate/wedding room and a beautiful outdoor covered patio overlooking the vineyard, as well as an outdoor dog park. The inside has a beautiful fireplace and high top wooden tables and chairs surrounding the fireplace. There’s a nice, rustic, farmhouse feeling to it. If you’ve craving cozy couch seating, they certainly have that too. Two couches are displayed towards the back of the winery next to the windows that overlook the vineyard. Hopefully you’ll arrive on a nice day and can sit outside on the patio and sip on some lovely sparkling rose while you overlook the vineyard. The back patio is the perfect place to relax solo or with a large group, as it can easily fit over twenty five patrons. There are couches, wicker tables and chairs, and two top chairs surrounding empty wine barrels too. It’s very charming and relaxing. On the weekends, they have live music outside too. It’s worth noting that although they do not have food, they do have beautiful, homemade chocolates for sale here. Wine and chocolate…you had me at hello! Stone Tower Winery. This is a must visit as it is easily one of the most spectacularly gorgeous wineries you will ever visit. It’s more beautiful than many of the vineyards in California! (Assuming of course, the weather is good!) The first thing you’ll notice about this vineyard is how big the property itself is. The massive rustic looking barn features many rooms including an open tasting room as soon as you walk inside and a gentleman’s parlor room in the back of the house complete with leather chairs, a massive fireplace, and a flat screen tv (often playing golf or football). On the front porch of this winery is a ton of outdoor wooden furniture and benches surrounding an overconfident ironbound hog in the middle of the outdoor space. Around the back of the house, there’s a spectacular multi-level patio that overlooks miles upon miles of lush green landscape, rolling hills, and a pond. Come early and get your seats before someone else does! This winery is very much children and pet friendly and the vineyard offers food including a stone oven which pumps out pizzas faster than you can say ‘wait, there’s pizza too?!’. Amen to that! Walsh Family Wines. The outside of this winery looks like a cottage from the British countryside. It’s beige and brown, with a brick doorway and golden color siding on the roof. The inside of the winery looks like a causal café with a high ceiling, lots of casual seating, and massive stone fireplace as the centerpiece of the room. If the option is available (meaning, Mother Nature cooperates), take your wine outside and sit on their half covered and half uncovered outdoor patio overlooking the vineyard. Relax and sip some wine near the outdoor stone fireplace on their cozy couch. Good luck not trying to sneak in a nap! This vineyard serves chocolate and the option of a cheese platter is also available.