Advocating for under-appreciated wine regions in the Eastern United States
The Virginia Grape
Three Fox Vineyards - Northern Virginia
This winery has room to spare with picnic opportunities on the many hillsides. There is also a creek on the lower property that is perfect for wading. There are yard games up closer to the tasting room a huge above the tasting room that also screams to be explored.
Barrel Oak Winery - Northern Virginia
If ever there was a place that screamed “family friendly,” it is Barrel Oak. It is a place that welcomes nearly every type of visitor and offers a large area for children to run around.
Veritas Vineyard & Winery - Central Virginia
This winery makes my list for nearly everything. Families are welcome and there is room on the deck or in the wooded area across from the tasting room for picnics and rambunctiousness. The Starry Nights Concert Series is a huge local draw and it is a perfect family event.
DuCard Vineyards - Central Virginia
In good weather this is an excellent family venue. There is often live music on the weekend and you will find guests dancing in the grass. There are plenty of picnic tables for families to spread out and tons of open space.
Knight’s Gambit Vineyard - Central Virginia
This is a new winery in a gorgeous mountain setting and they are most definitely fans of visitors with children. There are a few games to entertain the young ones, horses corralled across the street and room to roam around.
Hunts Vineyard - Shenandoah Valley
This is a small winery, but they made a point of telling me how welcoming they are of families. There is space outside that includes a play area and fenced in goats for the kids to marvel at. There is also a large yard.
Good Luck Cellars - Chesapeake Bay
This winery has tons of room inside and out. There are also yard games to entertain young guest.
Cobbler Mountain Cellars - Northern Virginia
This rural location at the base of Cobbler Mountain is an ideal space for a picnic and there is ample room for children to play.
I have been asked many times for the names of wineries where young couples can go and feel comfortable taking their children. I think there is more to being a family-friendly winery than just tolerating children in the tasting room. There needs to be some element of entertainment or some activity that will appeal to a young guest. Generally speaking, those activities should be outside the tasting room and offer some space to play or a specific child-appropriate activity.
Afton Mountain Vineyards - Central Virginia
The tasting room is small and less than ideal for children, but the deck and area around the farm pond offer plenty of space. This beautiful mountain setting has a lot of room to run around.
King Family Vineyards - Central Virginia
This winery contains ample space times two and the Sunday polo matches (in season) are a source of entertainment for the entire family. Take a picnic and spend the day.
This is hardly a comprehensive list and I am sure to be contacted by wineries wondering why they didn’t make the list. These are the ones that came immediately to mind and I think you and your family will enjoy all of them.