Where to Dine This Summer
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Home » Liquor Event, Spirits Event

Cider, Whiskey, and Mead in Virginia

Submitted by on July 1, 2019 – 8:18 amNo Comment

George Washington's Distillery, Mount Vernon, Virginia Special to Road Trips for Foodies
By Virginia Tourism Corporation

Virginia is the sixth-largest apple-producing state by acreage in the United States, and cider is a rich part of the Commonwealth’s heritage. Virginia cider styles vary from dry to sweet, still to sparkling, simple to complex. Numerous new cideries are opening in 2019 including Ditchley Cidery, outside of Kilmarnock, the first cidery in Virginia’s Northern Neck. Ditchley has roughly 60 varieties of apples grown on 15 acres and offers a Cider Club and a Meat/Charcuterie Club.

The first batch of whiskey was distilled in Virginia in 1620, making The Commonwealth the Birthplace of American Spirits. (We also note, Kentucky became the acknowledged home of bourbon when Kentucky was still part of Virginia. So we ask, is it not truly ALL Virginia Bourbon??) In fact, George Washington went on to be the biggest producer of Virginia whiskey during his time, producing more than 11,000 gallons in 1798 alone. To honor these roots, George Washington’s Rye Whiskey was recently named the Official State Spirit of Virginia. The unaged whiskey is produced just twice a year using the same recipe and 18th century methods as in Washington’s day and can only be purchased at George Washington’s Mount Vernon.

Today, distilleries span across the Commonwealth; from the mountains to the shores, and the hills and the hollers, with more than 70 distilleries making some of the finest spirits in the United States, and proudly holding titles of the “World’s Best Bourbon” and the “Best American Single Malt Whisky” as rated by the “World Whiskies Awards”, presented by Whisky Magazine!

Another craft beverage making a comeback in Virginia is mead, one of the most historic fermented drinks found on Earth. It has the creativity of craft beer and the elegance of wine, but is in a category all its own. The Silver Hand Meadery in Williamsburg offers daily honey tastings and mead flights. Other meaderies are popping up all over the state as the historic drink makes a resurgence.

(Photo courtesy of George Washington’s Distillery, Mount Vernon, Virginia)

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