The Black Dog Blog
Chateau Morrisette is among the oldest and largest wineries in Virginia. Previous to the Covid-19 pandemic we also operated an award-winning restaurant with a 95% recommendation rate on OpenTable. With fresh vintages, flavors, and events at the winery, restaurant, vineyard, and festival field throughout the year, we will keep you abreast of all the great happenings and the people who make up Chateau Morrisette Winery and Restaurant in this blog and through our Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest sites.
While you don't need an excuse to enjoy a sip with friends, we like to make sure to raise a glass on May 25, National Wine Day! In that spirit, we offer our Virginia red wines, or if you like, as many do, to lighten up as it heats up, consider our Virginia white wines. (In the clip, we're pouring our Virginia dry rosé, Vin Gris.) If it just doesn't feel like a grape day, we have fruit wine options, including a 100% Virginia apple wine. Cheers!
YEAR OF THE DOG MARCH WINE SALE
As part of Chateau Morrisette's year long 40th anniversary celebration, the winery will make two of our most distinctive varietals available for a limited time at 40% off. Viognier and Merlot normally retail for $33.99 and $28.99 respectively. During the month of March, these wines will be available for $20.39 and $17.39 in our Tasting Room and in the Restaurant. Online, the wines are slightly higher at $20.99 and $17.99. Chateau Morrisette can now ship to 32 states all across the country.
About these wines:
Aromas of fresh cherries, dark chocolate, and a hint of white pepper. Soft and approachable on the palate, with a refreshing acidity, cherry notes, and a touch of dark chocolate.
Bronze Medal: 2016 San Francisco Chronicle International Wine Competition • Bronze Medal: 2016 Finger Lakes International Wine Competition
Food Pairing Notes
Pairs well with most tomato-based Italian dishes or even with simple hamburgers off the grill. For a sweeter experience, try with your favorite dark chocolate.
This Merlot was grown in eastern Virginia and our cellar crew still remembers this specific lot of fruit because it was of such high quality. The fermentation took place in open top stainless steel fermenters with two to three pump overs daily. Post press and malolactic fermentation it went to barrel for 14 months for aging prior to bottling.
Aroma: tropical fruit and apricot. Palate: softly tannic, honeysuckle and passionfruit. Finish: lingering
2015 Vintage: 88 Points - San Diego International Wine Competition
Gold Medal: 2017 Savor Virginia Wine Classic • Silver Medal: 2017 Virginia State Fair Wine Competition • Silver Medal: 2016 San Diego International Wine Competition • Bronze Medal: Wines of the South Competition
The Viognier fruit used to make this wine was grown in Tyro, VA.
After pressing, this wine was first inoculated with a non-saccharomyces yeast strain to promote intense aromatics. Subsequently, it was inoculated with a standard saccharomyces strain to complete its cool, slow fermentation.
￼Our 2016 Viognier offers a perfumed nose of tropical fruit and apricot which is complimented by a softly tannic palate reminiscent of honeysuckle and passionfruit. All of these wonderful flavors linger on the palate.
Food Pairing Notes
grilled seafood topped with peach salsa
Savor our annual Winemaker's Dinner, five courses of delectable dishes specially paired with a wine for each course. Our winemaker will interpret the wine pairings, talk about new wines in the cellar, and entertain any wine questions you may have. Bring friends or make new ones in a fine wine and dining experience at Chateau Morrisette.
Dinner service begins 6p. $95 per person includes wine, tax, and gratuity. Prepaid reservations required. No refunds for this event.
Appalachian Cheese (Galax, VA)
cranberry & red onion marmalade, pickles, crostini
Cornmeal Fried Oyster
fennel, spinach, preserved lemon
Pan-seared Sea Scallop
lemon risotto, crispy shallot
Roasted Tomato & Red Pepper Soup
focaccia panzanella, radish, microgreens
Grilled Duck Breast & Leg Confit
quinoa, turnip, grapefruit, charred greens
Barrel Aged Cider
Dessert to be determined
Vegetarian alternatives available with at least seven days notice.
CHATEAU MORRISETTE CELEBRATES 40TH ANNIVERSARY
One of Virginia’s oldest and largest wineries, Chateau Morrisette marks its 40th anniversary beginning in 2018. The 40th anniversary logo has been developed and plans are underway to commemorate the milestone throughout the year, including a commemorative wine glass, wine label, and a special anniversary party.
The winery’s anniversary is a part of Virginia’s winemaking history which can be traced back to 1609 and the Jamestown Settlement. Later, both Thomas Jefferson and George Washington’s attempts to establish a viable crop met with failure. In 1873, a crop of Native American grapes met with great success at the Vienna World’s Fair, but it was not until Chateau Morrisette and five other wineries opened in the 1970s did Virginia truly begin producing and marketing wines.
In 1978, Chateau Morrisette was known as Woolwine Winery. Started by William and Nancy Morrisette, their son David became the first wine maker. In 1981, the family adopted the name Chateau Morrisette and moved the winery to its current location along the Blue Ridge Parkway in Floyd County, Virginia. In 1983, the family was instrumental in securing the Rocky Knob AVA, Virginia’s first designated American Viticultural Area. In 1985, Chateau Morrisette began wholesale distribution, partnering with Blue Ridge Beverage in Salem, Virginia, to place its Virginia wines on store shelves throughout Southwestern Virginia. By 1999, Chateau Morrisette expanded its production facilities to 32,000 sq. feet and a tank capacity of 130,000 gallons.
Today, forty years since its inception, Chateau Morrisette is still owned and operated by the Morrisette family. David Morrisette is no longer the winemaker but now serves as the President and CEO. His children are now working in various capacities at the winery, making Chateau Morrisette a third generation Virginia winery. Distribution has expanded from humble beginnings in southwestern Virginia to include retail outlets in seven states and direct-to-consumer shipments to customers in over thirty states. Commercial wine production has grown from 2,000 gallons in 1982 to over 130,000 gallons today. Chateau Morrisette is poised to continue its growth well into the next forty years.
Enjoy a cozy winter edition of Sunday Sounds in the Morrisette Room (above the tasting room) with local musical artists, light fare, and your favorite Chateau Morrisette wines.
* * * The winery's winter schedule, January through March, will be Friday - Sunday. * * *
January 7: Marie Anderson
January 14: Nostalgic But Cool
January 21: Dave Dutton
January 28: RagTop
February 4: Marie Anderson
February 11: no concert; Wine & Chocolate pairings!
February 18: Kat Mills
February 25: Marcie Horne
March 4: Nostalgic But Cool
March 11: Marie Anderson
March 18: Kat Mills
March 25: RagTop
You can learn and hear more about performers through links on our events calendar.
To help us comply with VA ABC requirements, no outside food or drink is permitted. As we will be serving food indoors, we are unable to welcome pets.
Discovery Lunches Focus on Australia
Join us Thursday, September 7th at noon for an exciting luncheon presentation by Big Five Tours and Expeditions along with a specially prepared menu featuring foods found throughout Australia prepared by Chateau Morrisette's own Culinary Team. Space is limited. $32.00 per person. Reservations and pre-payment required. Non-refundable. Lunch is served promptly at noon. Presentation begins at 1PM. The event will end by 2PM. Menu will be posted closer to day of event.
Big Five is a premium and luxury tour operator in business for 44 years offering fully customized and private journeys to Africa, Asia, Latin America, Australia and New Zealand. We create custom-designed itineraries based on the traveler’s interests. Our guests travel in comfort, style and safety and our goal is that you experience the best a destination has to offer. We promise a journey of a lifetime…every time!
Australia captivates from the very first encounter. It has cosmopolitan cities, the great stoic Outback, stunning marine reserves, and a wealth of diversity in its UNESCO World Heritage Sites. From old, family vineyards of Hunter Valley to the remarkable island of Tasmania, from lush old-world rainforests to unique railway journeys, a cornucopia of extravagant scenery and cultural encounters are all layered one upon the next on a brilliant canvas. Big Five has sought out partners who share our vision of a sustainable future that still allows our guests to explore off the tourist track, in keeping with our motto…We Don’t Tell Stories Better, We Tell Better Stories®
Saturday, August 12, The Black Dog Beach Music Festival returns to the Nancy Morrisette Festival Field at 3641 Black Ridge Road Floyd, VA, one mile from the winery, with sales by the glass or bottle; beers on tap; food, art, and craft vendors; and of course an afternoon of beach music to get you and your friends moving!
Adult Admission tickets will be sold at the gate for $30. Advanced ticket sales end at 4p on Friday, August 11. Tickets sold after this time will be gate price.
Admission includes tastings through the afternoon, on site parking, and entertainment. Gates open at 11a. Tastings and sales begin at 11:30. Music begins at noon and continues until 5p.
Our beloved tasting host Ray shared with Natalie of Daytime Blue Ridge a few shag steps to get ready for the festival!
Chuck Blethen is the host of the "The Mountain Grapevine" radio program – about all things grape & wine in the mountains
wART 95.5 FM radio Thursdays at 1PM EST, encore broadcast at 6PM every Sunday. On the Internet broadcasting worldwide at www.WartFM.org. WART is located in Madison County, North Carolina not far from the City of Asheville.
The interview with David Morrisette first aired on June 29, 2017. Listen to the interview here: RADIO INTERVIEW WITH DAVID MORRISETTE
Read Nisa Cochran's article on line at Savor Virginia Magazine.
Chateau Morrisette in Floyd, Va. is one of the oldest and largest wineries in the state, first opening in 1978 and attracting wine and food lovers ever since. The winery produces more than 75,000 cases of quality wine a year, distributes to nine states and overseas and offers an AAA Four Diamond restaurant with scenic views.
Chateau Morrisette’s Vin Gris is a beautiful summer wine made from a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Petit Verdot and Chambourcin. Vin Gris is made through a method known as saignée, which translates in French to “bleeding” as the red wine gets all of its color and most of its flavor from contact with the skins during fermentation. To concentrate flavor, aroma and color in their red wines, Chateau Morrisette increases the amount of skins in their tanks while “bleeding” off the rose-colored juice.
Vin Gris is best served chilled and pairs well with cheese-based dishes, with tasting notes of raspberry, peach and strawberries with a crisp and fruity finish. It’s an enjoyable wine ideal for sipping on during summer days. For a perfect pairing, try the Vin Gris with this Apple Butter, Bacon and Brie Grilled Cheese Recipe:
Apple Butter, Bacon and Brie Grilled Cheese
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
Total time: 15 minutes
2 thick slices artisan white bread
2 thin slices Brie cheese, rind cut off
2 slices bacon, cooked
1 tablespoon apple butter
Butter, as needed
Cook bacon till crispy, and then set aside.
Butter one side of each slice of bread.
In a large pan, place one slice of bread, butter side down. Top with apple butter, brie cheese and cooked bacon. Then, top with the second slice of bread, butter side up.
Over medium heat, cook for about 2½ minutes on each side of the sandwich, until bread is golden brown and the cheese is fully melted.
Serve with a glass of Chateau Morrisette Vin Gris Dry Rosé.
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