has been around since the mid 1900’s. Minimal vines graced the earth and most were located in France. Dennis Horton was the first to plant Viognier in Virginia and earn first prize in a California tasting that made other Virginia winemakers take notice of the grape.
Viognier was named Virginia’s official state grape in 2011. Today there are 70+ wineries throughout the state that produce Viognier. Some of the more noted ones include Michael Shaps, Barboursville, and Jefferson Vineyards
About the Grape
Viognier grape is well suited to Virginia’s humid climate. Warm, dry weather with cool nights are ideal for Viognier. Thick-skinned, the grapes the natural low acidity in the fruit requires a great deal of sunshine for it to ripen properly. The wine is a full-bodied white wine that emanates a pungent perfume of ripe tropical fruit and white flowers. Depending on the fermentation process flavors can range from stone fruits, honeysuckle and oil to spices and vanilla on the palate. Viognier is typically a dry or slightly off-dry wine.