Upon scouting out the region on Virginia Wine's main site, I found the perfect place. It was right off I-95 in New Kent County as well as one I had not heard of previously: Saudé Creek Winery. After visiting their site, I definitely was excited to check this place out. Saudé Creek, having opened a year ago this last July, boasts that they are located on the same site that once boasted the historic Frank's Tavern (A colonial inn and publick house) where George Washington and General Rochambeau quenched their thirst.
Speaking of thirst, let's move on to the wine.
The tasting was $7 and included the souvenir wine glass. We tasted 5 different wines, beginning with "Pamunkey Fall." Pamunkey Fall is a blend of Viognier and Chardonel, with notes of honeysuckle and apricot. This would definitely be an easy sipping wine by itself during the summer, but would pair well with food. This wine is named for the river that their property overlooks. Next on the tasting line-up was their Vidal Blanc, another easy sipping summer wine with notes of peaches on this. I would imagine this would pair very well with spicy foods. Both of these are each $19/bottle.
From there, we moved on to the red wines, starting off with the Merlot. Currently, it is a 2010 Merlot, aged 18 months in American oak. While I'm not normally a Merlot fan, I found this very drinkable with the big fruit up front and much smoother than I expected. Second on the list was their Cabernet Franc, which is a blend of 2009 and 2010 Cabernet Franc aged 24 months in French oak. This had the pepper that is often expected when drinking a Cab. Franc. Last of the reds available for tasting was the Saudé Creek Red. This is a blend of five red grapes, but the majority is Chancellor and Merlot. I hadn't previously heard of the variety of "Chancellor" but after tasting this, I definitely am interested in tasting more of this type of grape. As far as the cost to these, the Merlot rings in at $21, the Cab Franc at $27 and the Saudé Creek Red at $18.
In addition to the history behind their location, they can also boast about having a site with beautiful views with the tasting room nested on what appears to be the highest point. The tasting room has a decent sized wrap around bar with a cozy seating area near a fireplace, along with a spacious covered patio/porch area that wraps around most of the building and a deck in the rear overlooking the Pamunkey River in the distance. There is plenty of space here to accomodate people without being cramped at all. In addition to the patio/deck area, there are plenty of other seating options on the lower level. They currently have 25 acres under vine and have leased another 40 acres in Montpelier.