A few months back, The Burn broke the news about Cork & Keg Tours, an upscale winery and brewery tour operator that was preparing to launch in Loudoun County. Well, they are up and running and we took part in a wonderful tour this past weekend.
Our group — six Ashburn couples — was picked up by a luxury coach and handed flutes of mimosas, champagne or prosecco. We rode through the Loudoun countryside listening to our choice of music (we started with Sinatra, then segued to 80s — go figure) and enjoyed the company of our fellow guests.
On private tours, guests curate the list of places they will stop in advance. We chose to visit four wineries — the popular Quattro Goombas, the unique farm vineyard Zephaniah, Loudoun’s oldest winery Willowcroft and the ever-reliable Tarara with its beautiful views. At each stop, we were escorted to a special space, greeted by a knowledgeable wine expert and taken through the intricacies of a tasting. And at two of the stops, we even had the opportunity to speak to the head winemakers themselves, who provided fascinating insight into the secrets and philosophy of wine.
Cork & Keg is operated by Renee and Don Ventrice. This dynamic duo takes care of every detail. At our second stop, they had set up a luncheon provided by Parallel in Ashburn. Charcuterie, cheeses, rolls, quinoa salad, antipasto skewers, fresh veggies with black bean hummus, kettle chips — all delicious. And between our third and fourth stops, we were provided with a large cheese and cracker tray accompanied by fresh, hand-cut fruit to nosh on while rolling down the highways and byways.
Cork & Keg will arrange private tours like ours if you want to get a group of friends together, or you can contact them about reserving individual seats if you want to venture out with strangers (who will likely quickly become your friends).
At the end of the day, Cork & Keg delivered everyone back to our point of origin — safe and sound, if not perhaps a little unsteady on our feet. Personally, we can’t imagine a better way to visit Loudoun’s wineries and breweries.