This Labor Day Weekend, I visited two local PA wineries. Saturday, I tasted at Va La Vineyards in Avondale, PA. They offer two tasting options. We opted for the reserve tasting at the upstairs bar. A wonderful experience all around. The view is beautiful and outside they had live music and wood fired pizza for the day. The wines, well, they were surprisingly good for PA wine. We tasted one white and several red. The reds offered good structure, balance and complexity. Each wine is paired with local artisan cheeses, fresh baked focaccia, chocolate and served with bread and olive oil. Our pourer, Jim, was very knowledgeable and informative. Va La is situated on roughly 7 acres, they grow all of their own grapes on property, and they produce unique blends in small batches. The wines start at about $25 dollars and go up from there.
The next day, Sunday, we headed over to Chaddsford Winery, in Chadds Ford, PA for their Jazz Festival. We have been before and always have a good time. We packed cheeses, salami, fresh salads, ham, arugula and brie sandwiches on fresh baked Parmesan baguettes, wine biscuits, prosciutto and melon, and more. It is an event we can go with the kids and they had a great time picnicking and playing on the grass with their friends. We had nice table just beside the grass laid out with a pretty table cloth and our goodies. Admission is $25 a person (kids are free). They have stations set up both outdoors and indoors at the wine making facility for tasting. They have a good balance of reds and whites and a couple of sweet wines. We had a good time just sitting outside, enjoying a beautiful day, listening to live jazz, feasting on yummy cheeses, drinking some wine, playing some games and chatting with our friends.
We much preferred the wines at Va La to those at Chaddsford. However,this isn’t a completely fair comparison. Our tasting at Va La was a much more intimate experience centered on the wines, while our day at Chaddsford was centered on picnicking at a Jazz Festival with our friends, basically atmosphere.
We had a highly enjoyable time at both wineries.