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It’s only been a few months since Reston Town Center hosted the spring Great Grapes Wine, Arts & Food Festival, but now the cooler weather is about to set in, it’s prime wine season and the fall festival is coming up September 8 & 9!

For Restonians, the festival is a seasonal staple with more than 200 wines from 20 Virginia wineries, delicious food with live gourmet demonstrations, crafts, a kids’ activity area and live entertainment. But let’s get down to business and talk about the real reason we’re all here: the wines. We went through the participating wineries and picked a few of our favorites. (We by no means claim to be expert sommeliers, these just struck our fancy!)

Here are a few of our top wines to watch:

  • Cooper Vineyards in Louisa, VA won eight awards with their 2010 Norton Reserve. Made of 100% Norton grape, it has a deep purple color and a robust burst of fruity, silky flavor and tannins that are best tamed by letting it breathe first.
  • Mattaponi Winery in Spotsylvania, VA, is best known for its Odeimin (meaning strawberry) wine that has won seven awards. It is a light dessert wine made from local strawberries that hints of the fruit starting sweet, but not overly sweet, and finishes with a tart lingering flavor on the palate.
  • Democracy Vineyards in Lovingston, VA, has an eight-time award-winning wine, the Velvet Revolution Reserve 2009, which is a varietal with an explosive complexity that’s a mixture of cherry notes, deep tannins and a nutty, dry-yet-still-fruity finish. The equal parts Cabernet Franc, Chambourcin, Merlot and Petit Verdot round it out for a well-balanced wine.
  • The Williamsburg Winery in Williamsburg, VA, has their barrel-aged Acte12 Chardonnay 2010, which is an eight-time award winner. It is a smooth, toasty chardonnay with a strong buttery finish that leaves a creamy sugary taste on the palate.
  • Potomac Point Vineyard & Winery in Stafford, VA, has the best Viognier of the East Coast according to the Beverage Wine Institute. The Richland Reserve Viognier 2009 has a golden yellow color with gentle, yet complex aromas of tropical fruits such as citrus, and dragon fruit yet with a creamy banana and coconut custard finish. This is a well-balanced wine with a crisp medium-to-full-body taste.
  • And lastly, don’t miss the Unicorn Winery in Amissville, VA – we can’t speak to their wines, we just love the name!

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So now you know about a few of the great wines that are going to be at the festival, grab your tickets (a percentage of the proceeds go to Spirit of Hope Children’s Foundation!) and get ready to uncork the fun!  If you can’t make it to the festival this season, don’t worry, Reston Town Center has plenty of delicious wines to taste at our restaurants or grab a bottle at our specialty shops like Market Cellars!

It’s no real surprise to people already living in Reston, but the rest of the world is being reminded that Reston is one of the best small cities to live in America! Our master-planned community ranked seventh in the recent poll by CNN Money – go Reston!

Ranked on factors like strong job opportunities, great schools, low crime and plenty to do, it’s no wonder Reston was rated so highly. Our “uber-urban downtown,” (aka Reston Town Center!) offers shops, restaurants, live concert series, wine and beer festivals, seasonal ice skating and family events year-round. Add in our unique, creative neighborhoods with sidewalks and quiet streets and ongoing recreation of pools, miles of trails, parks, lakes and the W&OD winding through it and you wonder how we didn’t make number one! With new companies moving into the area creating new jobs all the time, it’s also a great place to start a career.

Recently ranked as one of Four Square’s “Top 10 Romantic Spots in the US,” Reston offers its visitors and residents a unique setting that is both intimate and urban. Designed as a community to foster connectivity, relationships both new and old can grow while a steady stream of new people keeps life and experiences fresh. After all, the people you are with are often what add the ‘awesome’ to where you are!

As the locals know, Reston is only 30 minutes outside Washington D.C. and acts as a respite from the bustling city life. It’s also a mere 10 minutes from Washington Dulles Airport and within the next few years, the new metro extension will connect all three easily.

Thank you to all the Restonians for making Reston the “best place to live”!  For those unfamiliar, come visit and see for yourself!

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