The US state on the Mid-Atlantic coast with the capital Richmond is considered one of the cradles of North American viticulture. Virginia was founded as the earliest English colony by the famous buccaneer Sir Walter Raleigh (1552-1618) in 1585/1586 and named by him in honor of his "virgin queen" Elizabeth I (1533-1603). Here in 1776, the "Declaration (Bill) of Rights" were announced, which served as the basis for the subsequent American Constitution. Virginia was one of the 13 founding states of the USA
, in 1863 became the independent state today West Virginia
separated. The English colonists found in the woods massively proliferating, wild grapevines of the species Vitis labrusca
before and prepared it in 1607 for the first time wine. This was due to the Foxtons
Inedible, therefore, European grape varieties were introduced, which were first planted in 1619 in Jamestown.
As a result, it was tried unsuccessfully for a long time on the entire east coast to win quality wine from European varieties. But all attempts failed because they are vulnerable to the plagues unknown in Europe phylloxera
were. From the beginning of the 18th century brought out of France Huguenots their viticulture knowledge and fertilized the viticulture. The third US President Thomas Jefferson
(1743-1826) was born in Virginia as the son of a tobacco planter. He occupied himself on his estate Monticello (today name one AVA
) for decades intensive with viticulture and (mostly unsuccessful) trials with European varieties. His neighbor and friend was the Italian-born wine pioneer Philip Mazzei
Especially by the American viticulture pioneer Philip wagner
(1904-1996) popularized French hybrids
were also grown in Virginia from the 1940s. It was not until the middle of the 20th century that it succeeded in successfully cultivating European vines. Today, the almost 1,000 hectares of vineyards are already planted with 80% Vinifera varieties, as well as 20% hybrids and American varieties. The European varieties are Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Marsanne, Mourvèdre, Merlot, Riesling and Viognier. As AVA
are classified the areas Monticello, North Fork of Roanoke, Northern Neck George Washington Birthplace, Rocky Knob, Shenandoah Valley (not to be confused with the eponymous AVA in California) and Virginia's Eastern Shore. The area around Charlottesville is the most important wine growing area in Virginia.
Today, Virginia is one of the fastest-growing US states in the wine-growing industry in the east. There are around 70 production companies. The most famous are Abingdon Vineyard & Winery, Am Rhein Wine Cellars, Autumn Hill Vineyards & Blue Ridge Winery, Barboursville Vineyards & Historic Ruins, Château Morrisette, Ingleside Plantation, Jefferson Vineyards, Winery & Vineyar Winery, Meredyth Vineyard, Misty Mountain Vineyard & Winery , Montdomaine Cellars, Oakencroft Vineyard & Winery, Prince Michel & Rapidan River Vineyards, Stone Mountain Vineyard, Tomahawk Mill Winery, Williamsburg Winery and Windy River Winery.