The Governor’s Cup is a prestigious competition held each year and judged by well known wine critics in the country. Bringing home the gold medal from the Governor’s Cup is a sought after achievement for any Virginia winery.  Two local winery did just that. Not only did Barren Ridge and Rockbridge Vineyards get awarded the gold for their Meritages, they both were chosen to be two of 12 wines placed in the governor’s case and promoted by the governor throughout 2014.

Meritage is our favorite red wine (besides Zinfandel).  For those of you who are not familiar with Meritage wine, it is a red blend referred to as a Bordeaux-style blend. This means that it must have at least three Bordeaux grape varietals, none of which can be more than 90% of the blend.  Varietals include Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Petit Verdot, and Malbec.


Rockbridge is a hop, skip, and a jump from our property. Shep and Jane Rouse, owners, have won numerous medals over the years including Best in Show in the Atlantic Seaboard Wine Competition, Best in Show in Town Point Competition and twice winner of the Virginia Governor’s Cup.  They have won a third medal in the Cup this year for their 2008 Meritage. Rockbridge’s Meritage is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Petit Verdot, and Malbec.


Barren Ridge is located just north of Staunton. Owners John and Shelby Higgs have a wonderful tasting room that sits high overlooking the vineyards which was once John’s family apple orchard. First time winners of the gold medal this year for their 2009 Meritage, Barren Ridge’s 2009 Meritage is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, and Petit Verdot. “Virginia can make world-class wine. We’re inferior to no one.”  – Barren Ridge Owner John Higgs


We have both Meritage wines in our personal wine cellar!  They are fabulous wines and we are lucky to have both wineries close to us. So you can be lucky to taste the gold medal winners when you visit us. Rockbridge, 2 miles from us, is open 7 days a week and offer complimentary tastings.  Barren Ridge charges a tasting fee but we have complimentary tasting cards for our guests to enjoy their wine tasting.  Trust us….You definitely want to visit both wineries and you won’t come out empty handed!

See you soon!

Melissa and Ray


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Bourbon Tasting Anyone?

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