While heading from I-64 to Route 29 in Virginia or going to one of the state’s ski resorts (yes, Virginia has ski resorts!), you may come across busy Virginia State Route 151, which goes through a small portion of Nelson County, Virginia. Though when a rural passthrough, it’s now home to one of Virginia’s best-kept tricks for drink lovers.
Nelson County’s wine-soaked ascension perhaps began in 2001, when Veritas Winery produced its first vintage. Within a years, breweries, cideries and other beverages spots started turning up. And today, the area dubbed the Nelson 151 is home to 7 wineries, four breweries, 3 cideries and three distilleries, making it a remarkable stop for those looking for a weekend vacation off dynamic Virginia State Path 151.
All set to get check out? From locations to drink and eat to locations to remain, here’s everything to experience when going to the Nelson 151 trail.
Image Courtesy of Wild Man Dan Brewery
Beer and Cider Stops
Although the place is small, WildManDan Brewery provides big taste. Husband and wife group Dan and Terri Tatarka draw inspiration from brews they take pleasure in during their travels, then use regional components to recreate their own variation back home, which they brew in 10-gallon batches. Search for the Chai Laxin (a tongue-in-cheek method to say “chillaxin'”), an English brown ale with tastes of cinnamon, cardamom, anise and ginger. The offering is suggested to stimulate teatime in London.
A seat at the bar, housed in a former 1900s feed shop, showcases an upright piano turned kegerator, which Dan Tatarka– a previous fiber optic engineer– constructed himself. The farmhouse, built in 1870, likewise works as a bed and breakfast; an overnight stay consists of a beer tasting.
Strong Rock Cider BarnNellysford, Virginia
In 2010, John Washburn, a Virginia farmer, and Brian Shanks, a New Zealand cidermaker, signed up with forces to begin producing tough cider. Today, the operation produces craft beverages utilizing locally-sourced apples. With outposts at both ends of heaven Ridge Mountains, the flagship Strong Rock place on the Nelson 151 route includes a distillery that makes spirits with tastes of spiced peach and cinnamon apple. Likewise available? Easy-drinking canned mixed drinks that are not to be missed.
Blue Toad Hard Cider
Blue Toad Hard Cider sources a blend of apple ranges from Nelson County and Western New York. Look for their Barrel Aged Series of small-batch, exclusive ciders and their award-winning dry cider, Granny Smith.
In addition, unlike numerous other locations on the path, their property is flat, which allows a scenic view of the mountains from every perspective.
Image Courtesy of Strong Rock Cider Barn
Helmed by a mother-and-daughter duo, Silverback Distillery aims to develop flavorful spirits using mountain water and locally-sourced grain. Consistent favorites are their 4-Grain Straight Bourbon, Blackback Honey Rye and Strange Monkey Gin, which they claim puts the “gin” in Virginia.
Come by to taste their cocktail flights or sit at the bar to consume a whiskey served cool.
Image Thanks To Vertas Red Wines
After falling in love with the location, Andrew and Patricia Hodson decided to purchase a small farm in 1998. That purchase rapidly developed into a passion task for the whole family. With their child Emily Hodson serving as lead winemaker, Veritas Winery produced its first vintage in 2001. Due to the gorgeous landscape, visitors tend to stick around at the winery and vineyards, sipping red wine and tasting Veritas-made charcuterie.
A home and farmhouse spaces are offered for those wishing to remain overnight.
Hazy Mountain Vineyards & & Brewery
Trying to find a view of heaven Ridge Mountains to go along with your wine or beer? Hazy Mountain really provides. One of the more recent stops on the Nelson 151 path, this area opened in 2019.
Drink varietals such as the operation’s 2018 Dry Riesling and 2019 Petit Verdot, by means of a flight or an assisted wine tasting. If you prefer hoppy drinks, sample its take on Hefeweizen or pick a seasonal brew, such as Spiced Ale. Feeling peckish? Hazy Mountain has a curated choice of light bites should you get here hungry.
Flying Fox Vineyard and Winery
Maybe the most Instagrammable area on the path, Flying Fox Vineyard and Winery is quickly recognized by its large outside mural that beckons visitors from Path 151. Although the winery started in 2001, Emily Hodson– likewise the lead winemaker and co-owner at Veritas– came on board in 2006 and now co-owns Flying Fox. Try their experimental Sly Fox sub-label, which concentrates on vermouth, orange wine and bourbon barrel-aged white wine.
Image Courtesy of Flying Fox Vineyards
Restaurants With Outstanding Beverage Lists
Devils Backbone Brewing Company
Called after a regional mountain ridge, Devils Backbone was at first motivated by a beer that founders Steve and Heidi Crandall tasted on a journey to the Alps. The brewpub in 2008.
Today, the Devils Foundation home consists of several on-site restaurants, a stogie bar and a distillery lounge, where you can sample house-made gin, rum, bourbon and scotch. Menus include classic brewpub apps, such as a wood-fired pretzel, plus instilled options, like the macaroni with Vienna lager beer cheese and a hamburger topped with hop-brined pickles.
Besides Devils Backbone’s craft beverages, they also use other locally-made alternatives from Potter’s Craft Cider in close-by Charlottesville and a large lineup of California wines.
Image Thanks To Tom Daly
Blue Mountain Brewery
Blue Mountain Brewery, opened in 2007, uses a hearty choice of dishes. With an emphasis on casual fare that pairs well with the operation’s housemade beers, the items include beer-boiled local bratwurst, paninis stuffed with fried green tomatoes and hamburgers anointed with sticky-sweet bourbon bacon jam. In addition, the brewery offers 8 to 10 of their brews on tap, plus wine, cider and kombucha produced in Afton and Charlottesville, Virginia.
If you remain in town on a Wednesday, drop in for delighted hour from 5 to 9 p.m. The brewery also has live music every Friday night from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Depending upon the weather condition, you can enjoy your beverages indoors, out on the outdoor patio, or cozied up by the outdoor fire pit.