Fall in New England – it really is as fabulous as all of those movies and TV shows make it out to be. I have just returned from a lovely weekend just outside of Boston, Mass. where I had the honor of celebrating a dear friend’s wedding to her own Prince Charming. The lovely, simple ceremony was held at Nashoba Valley Winery, in Bolton, Mass. I mean – look at the view from the seats for the outdoor ceremony!
The day of the ceremony was cool and a bit damp (don’t worry, the sun came out in time for the vows) so I decided to spend my free time taking the winery’s tour and doing some tastings. For $7, I was treated to a tour of Nashoba’s production facilities where I learned more about the winery, which is also a fruit orchard, and had the chance to taste 6 of their over 30 wines. The tour was a wealth of interesting tid-bits about winemaking and Nashoba’s history. For example, Nashoba received the first farmers-distiller license in the state of Massachusetts, and, having tasted 4 of their spirits, it is a very good thing.
After the tour, I decided to do an additional tasting, for $4 I received 5 tickets to use as I see fit to taste any of the wines, 10+ beers, or 13 on-site distilled spirits. Yes – they make their own wine, beer, and spirits and I could taste any of them that I wanted (I even paid a bit more to taste Stimulus – their “single malt” whiskey.) As I mentioned, I was able to taste 6 wines during the tour, so choosing between over 50 options was made minutely easier. I also made the executive decision to avoid the beer tasting bar, as I’m not much a beer drinker and the sweeter fruit wines and dessert wines. Even with the options narrowed – choosing what to taste was still nearly impossible, but finally did. My tasting list, and only a small section of tasting notes, below.
Vidal Blanc (tour tasting)Vinjoles (tour tasting)
Maiden’s Blush (tour tasting)
Renaissance (tour tasting) – This red, a blend of cabernet franc, lemberger, and merlot, was my favorite Nashoba wine. I was especially fond of the peppery finish that the lemberger brought.
Blueberry Merlot (tour tasting)
Sweet Plum (tour tasting)
Northern Comfort – This “congac” was, by far, the best thing I tasted at Nashoba. Rich, soothing, and warm – it was like getting a hug from a Care Bear on a cold fall evening. I may have bought a bottle home with me.
Gin “The Perfect 10” – Before my trip to Nashoba, I had never had gin before, so I can’t compare it to anything else. What I can say – it was delicious. Clean, and herbal (the “Perfect 10” references the 10 different botanicals used in making the spirit). I could see using it in rosemary or thyme summer cocktail.
Stimulus Whiskey – While this tasting cost and extra $3, it was definitely worth it. A great sipping whiskey, I took my generous sample to the benches outside and enjoyed it while people watching.
I spent nearly 2 hours at Nashoba before heading back and getting ready for the wedding (and then going back to Nashoba). I can’t think of a better way to have spent the a perfect New England fall day. If you are ever in the area, check them out. In addition to the tastings and tour, they had apple picking, a beautiful restaurant, and plenty of space to toss a football with a friend.