Earlier this week I had the tremendous opportunity to be a speaker during the 2017 Virginia Wine Summit. During the panel, titled “Defining Local on the East Coast,” I helped lead a tasting of four Virginia wines and four New York wines. Discussions of history, style, soil, acidity and — not-at-all-surprisingly — pricing ensued. The other sessions that I attended focused on varietal Petit Verdot wines and Virginia Viognier. Both fascinating and obviously a bit different from what we see here in New York.

The day prior to the Summit, all of the various panelists — mostly sommeliers and beverage directors from up and down the eastern seaboard — hopped on a bus and toured a bit of Central Virginia wine country. I tasted a lot of wines and talked to a lot of winemakers. There will be at least a handful of stories to come out of the trip — and hopefully even some Virginia wines in upcoming shipments from The Cork Club.

In the meantime, here are some of the best things I tasted and saw on the trip. Look for more starting next week.

About Author

Lenn Thompson, a proud Pittsburgh, PA native, moved to Long Island more than a decade ago and quickly fell in love with the region’s dynamic and emerging wine community. A digital and content marketing and community professional by day, he founded NewYorkCorkReport.com in early 2004 to share his passion for the wines, beers and spirits of New York State. After running that site -- which became the premier source for independent New York wine commentary, reviews and news -- for 12 years, he launched TheCorkReport.us in late 2016 to add the wines of Virginia, Maryland, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Vermont and beyond to his beat. Lenn currently serves as the wine columnist for The Suffolk Times weekly newspaper and is the former editor of the Long Island Wine Gazette. He contributes or has contributed to publications like Wine Enthusiast Magazine, Beverage Media, Edible Brooklyn, Edible East End and Edible Hudson Valley. Lenn served on the board of directors for Drink Local Wine, and is the creator and founder of TasteCamp, an annual regional wine immersion conference for writers and trade. An admitted riesling and cabernet franc fanatic, he’s intensely passionate about eating local and the many local wine regions of America. Lenn lives in Miller Place, NY with his wife Nena, son Jackson, daughter Anna and their dog, Casey Lemieux Thompson.