Wine and Beverage Management, Goodlad, Spring 2013

SOIL: Granite based soil in the west and sandy loam soil in the east, they both offer prime grape growing ground.

CLIMATE: A mild, humid, coastal climate is characteristic of Virginia. provide a temperate climate that’s not too hot or cold for extended periods. Virginia’s varying weather patterns see the mountainous southwest and Shenandoah Valley average a 160-day growing season; and east of the Blue Ridge, an average of 200 days.


White> Chardonnay, Petit manseng, Reisling, S. Blanc, Seyral Blanc, Vidal Blanc.

Red> C. Franc, Merlot, C. Sauvignon, Norton, Petit Verdot, Chambourcin.

Others> Rose, Sparkling Wine and fruit wine

HISTORICAL SIGNIFICANT FIGURE: Thomas Jefferson has been described as America’s “first distinguished viticulturist,” and “the greatest patron of wine and wine growing that this country has yet had.”

AVA of Northern Virginia: Northern Virginia area, you’ll discover a large number of wineries thanks to relative elevations that offer perfect sites for grape vines. The rolling landscape, with its rich soils from eons of granite and sandstone erosion, gives good air and drainage for wine grapes. Add the moderate winters and a generous growing season and the result is very productive ground for winemaking grapes. Northern Virginia wineries produce fine examples of every wine Virginia offers, including Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chambourcin, Chardonnay, Mandolin, Merlot, Norton, Petit Verdot, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Seyval, Vidal Blanc, Traminette and Zinfandel as well as many fruit wines.