My husband and I just returned from a week long trip to Virginia wine country. We are from the Northern Virginia area and always add wineries to our itinerary when we visit family. This is the first time we realized visiting wineries is not as convenient as it used to be prior to the birth of our son. By the end of the trip, we developed a great system and knew exactly how to keep our 14 month old son occupied while enjoying wine tastings.
If we found the wine to be exceptionally good, we would enjoy a glass outside and take in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountain range. My son was happy crawling in the grass and discovering rocks. This is not something he typically gets to do in Florida since we have fire ants everywhere. He would be so worn out afterwards that he’d fall asleep immediately when the car would start.
We only had the opportunity to visit seven wineries over a span of five days. We had hoped for more, but let our son’s behavior dictate our schedule. Barrel Oak Winery in Delaplane, Virginia was by far the most family friendly winery I have ever been to! We walked in the door on the 4th of July and our son was greeted with a box of Juicy Juice Apple Juice! The decor was fun too, professional black and white photographs of dogs and cats everywhere. After we sampled their wines, my husband and I enjoyed a glass of Cabernet Franc outside. There must have been at least 20 other families with children and dogs! Although that may sound overwhelming, it was exceptionally quiet! The kids were not running around acting silly, they were extremely well behaved and just enjoying their family time.
The winery grounds at Barrel Oak Winery is beautiful and the customer service is top notch. We thoroughly enjoyed our time at this winery and highly recommend it to families. Make sure to bring Fido as well!
We typically add Chateau O’Brien at Northpoint Winery to our list of wineries to visit; however, they have made their winery available to people 21 years of age and older (basically, no children are allowed). To read more about it, visit TheOther46 wine blog. We made sure the wineries on our list were family friendly but I must say, Linden Vineyards made it very clear that my son was not welcome downstairs for the barrel tastings. The young lady that poured our samples had no personality whatsoever and was extremely rude! It is a shame since Linden’s wine is exceptionally good! My husband enjoyed the barrel tasting event while my son and I had some great one-on-one time outside the winery.
We also felt comfortable at Breaux Vineyards, Doukénie Winery, Veramar Vineyard, Fox Meadow Vineyards and Bluemont Vineyard. If you are planning a trip to Virginia wine country, hopefully this blog will help you decide which wineries to visit with your children.
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