A few weeks ago we visited a winery that we had previously overlooked on our Loudoun County adventures. Zephaniah Farm Vineyard is located off of Route 15 in Leesburg and sandwiched between several of our favorite DC Wine Country destinations. Given the location, it’s almost amazing we hadn’t stopped in before. Sometimes it’s these spontaneous winery stops that turn out to be the most incredible experiences, and our trip to Zephaniah was exactly that.Zephaniah Farm Vineyard is a family owned and operated working farm and vineyard. The tasting room is actually the manor house belonging to the Hatch family and was built in 1830 by the same builder of President James Monroe’s home. The Hatch family took ownership of the farm in 1950 and planted grapes beginning in 2002, renaming the vineyard after the great grandfather, Zephaniah. In addition to the vineyard, the farm continues to produce angus, lamb, and honey on the property (Bonnie also shared with us several of her summertime recipes using their produce, so we know there is a lush and plentiful garden on the property as well!).
The home (which currently serves as the tasting facility, although another facility is available for large gatherings) is beautiful. From the outside, the home is built of magnificent brick and is surrounded by trees and lush gardens providing a calm and serene environment. Inside, the family has preserved the property, showcasing the different rooms from
the entryway to the parlor and the library as well as the living room where seated tastings take place. Tastings are $10 (5 wines sampled) and Zephaniah is open Saturday and Sunday from noon-5:30pm. The grounds are beautiful (just look at that garden!) and you are welcome to bring a picnic to enjoy on the lawn.
A unique feature of Zephaniah is that the tastings are conducted seated in the living room of the manor house by a member of the family or the wine-making team. This lends to a very personable and educational tasting. The owners, Bill and Bonnie, are extremely friendly, passionate, welcoming, and knowledgable about the property and the wine. They provided us with a tour and history of the land, and took the time to sit with us and explain the wines in detail. It was one of the most relaxing and engaging tasting experiences we’ve ever had. We were able to sample two white blends, the Rose, a red blend, the Chambourcin, and the Cab Franc. The red wines are all paired with a piece of dark chocolate helping to savor the flavors of the wine. We took a bottle of the Rose home with us, although we are regretting not purchasing more (we’ll have to swing by soon for another visit). We also enjoyed the white blends made with Chardonel and our favorite red was the Chambourcin.