Welcome to Little Washington Winery! Carl Henrickson, a complete and insufferable wine fanatic from the ripe old age of 16, started making wine as a hobby in our Alexandria townhouse in the Summer of 2003. Before long that little townhouse was overflowing with wine gear ... and his hobby had become a full blown crush that required vineyard management and wine making classes, finding southeast facing slopes, planting vines, buying tanks and barrels, opening a tasting room ...
In addition to growing Chardonnay, Viognier, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah ... we are pioneering two new grape varietals to Virginia ... Vignole and Arandell.
- Vignole - can be produced as a clean and crisp, bone-dry white, or a complex, late harvest honey apricot wine, similar to Sauternes.
- Arandell - is the first release of a brand new organic grape varietal from the grape breeding program at Cornell University. It produces dark red wines with moderate tannins exhibiting notes of dark berry fruit, tobacco, black pepper and cedar.
Carl's hobby-gone-wild has now totally taken over our world. We've moved out to the Blue Ridge mountains, from big Washington to Little Washington, 60 miles west of Washington DC. We're completely dominated by Carl's unquenchable quest to handcraft small-batch masterpiece wines. We’re obsessed with life as farmers here on the sunrise side of Skyline Drive at Shenandoah National Park. It's an easy day-trip from anywhere in Virginia ... Please Come Play!
THE LITTLE WASHINGTON WINERY PORTFOLIO
Shenandoah Steel Chardonnay
Named the #3 white wine in Virginia, Little Washington Winery's Shenandoah Steel (naked) Chardonnay is pure elegance in a bottle. Cluster pressed grapes, crisp acidity and delicate hints of pear and melon evoke the Old World style of the Chablis region of Burgundy. We've captured the essence of the Chardonnay grape with this bottling. Never touched by oak barrels, this wine is at the forefront of the trend for bright, crisp, refreshing wine that lets the fruit shine without oak influence. Delicious on its own and with a variety of dishes. Pair this wine up with anything a chef would bring out with a lemon for a perfect pairing.
Old World Oak Chardonnay
Little Washington Winery's Old World Oak Chardonnay went through malalactic fermentation to give it a creamy buttery nuance, then was aged ‘sur lie’ for 6 months to enhance the silky texture, while keeping the pure, fruit-focused expression. Floral, fresh ginger and mineral nuances lace expansive fruity flavors that become increasingly interesting and complex as the wine warms in the glass. This wine pairs nicely with seafood and salad and can cross over to richer dishes like chicken and Alfredo sauces too!
Meet Virginia Viognier
Honeysuckle, citrus blossom, gardenias and peaches ~ Garden meets orchard in a glass of Little Washington Winery's Virginia Viognier. This is one temperamental, highly sensitive, unpredictable grape. If picked too early, she fails to display her full profile of flavors and aromas; picked too late she makes wines that are oily and lacking in perfume. Treat her just right, and a seductive, exuberant, unbelievably rich white wine, with an alluring bouquet of expressive floral aromas and powerful flavors of peach, apricot and mango comes through. Balancing flamboyance with crispness, Virginia Viognier is the perfect garden party playmate.
Rare Petit Verdot Rose - Not usually associated with the pink stuff, Petit Verdot is a tiny, bold, savory, earthy, aggressive, black grape appropriately nicknamed "the big inky". Great Petit Verdot wines offer up ethereal aromas of plum, lilac, violet, sage, blackberry and dried herbs. Our Petit Verdot saignee rosé is dry and full-bodied with bold fruit and medium-plus acidity, exhibiting elegant flavors of sage, plum, watermelon, mocha, licorice and molasses on the palate, with a crisp and lively dry finish.
Little Washington Winery's Gold Medal Cabernet Franc presents an understated elegance that can be savored with food or saved for after dinner chocolates and cigars. The nose evokes roasted red pepper, jalapeño, sweet raspberry compote and wet gravel. On the palate moderately low tannins bring out flavors of sour cherry, smoky tomato, dried oregano, sweet pepper and mint. The taste bursts through your palate and drops out quickly with a subtle tingle from the acidity. Pair with salmon, mushrooms, salty Virginia ham or lamb - cooked with mint sauce - the mint is a bridge to the wine’s characteristic mint qualities.
George Meritage Blend
Named the #1 red wine in Virginia, Little Washington Winery's signature red, George, is a Meritage blend! George is often voted best red wine in show, and is a frequent ringer of the “Guess the $100 Bordeaux” blind tasting class. Dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon, soft tannins and concentrated fruit give this 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Franc blend perfectly balanced flavor and body with a smooth, silky texture and complex, robust structure. Dark cherry and plum flavors settle into tertiary flavors of violets, chocolate, licorice, truffles, tobacco leaf, smoke and spice. Silky texture. Nice width and depth on the palate.
Little Washington Winery's Gold Medal Syrah explodes with tart dark fruit flavors. When you taste it you'll be greeted with a punch of flavor that tapers off into nuances of savory black olive, pepper, clove, rosemary, bacon, tobacco, herbs and smoke with a spicy, peppery finale in the after taste. This is one very nice Syrah from Virginia. With its massive, spicy full-bodied taste it pairs perfectly with bold, spicy foods ... anything from a blue cheese burger to barbecue.