Not long after moving to Southwest Virginia, I happened upon the 13th Annual Mid-Atlantic Garden Faire in Abingdon, where I had the good fortune of sitting in on a discussion called “Mines to Wines” led by Suzanne Lawson and her son, David.
“The reclaimed mine land has actually worked out better for us than we thought,” says Suzanne, who, along with David and her husband, Ron, converted a reclaimed surface mine into MountainRose Vineyards in Wise. “That mining has brought up the minerals from deep within, and we think that’s one of the reasons our wines are particularly nice,” she surmises. “Reclaiming that land − mines to wines − is part of our unique story.”
Southwest Virginia wines are drawing acclaim from the region’s unique attributes, the combination of everything belonging to its specific appellation − soil, weather conditions, grapes, vines, air − even the vintners themselves. Artisanal mead and cider lend depth and interest to the region’s offerings.
Learn more about MountainRose in this short video featuring Suzanne and David, then come out and meet them, along with the other fascinating vintners, cider and mead makers behind Southwest Virginia’s success at today’s first-ever Southwest Virginia Wine Festival from 1 to 5 p.m. at Heartwood.