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Day trip

To end a vacation week of work around our always needy home on a high note, we decided to take a well deserved break yesterday. A day trip with two friends to a place called Peddler’s Village in Bucks County Pennsylvania. Bucks County PA is about an hour drive through some rural and very scenic areas of lower New Jersey across the Delaware River into Pennsylvania. Peddler’s Village is a country style collection of 75 specialty shops and restaurants in a large village setting all within walking distance of each other. Might I add that it is walking distance if the temperature is not in the 90’s as it was yesterday. We consumed a lot of water and took our time in the air conditioned shops. The 75 shops are mixed from arts and artisans, collectables and gifts, cultural, fashion, shoes, jewelry, lifestyle, home decor, specialty foods, candy, toys, sports and hobbies and of course wine. We had a great lunch at Hart’s Tavern which is billed as “The perfect spot for heartwarming libations”. Chicago style pan pizza, light meals and casual camaraderie. After lunch it was back out to brave the heat and hit some more shops. Our last stop was to check out the wine tasting room for Chaddsford Winery. You can bet we all prayed on the walk over that their air conditioning was working. The winery is actually located in historic Brandywine Valley PA in the tiny village of Chadds Ford, about a two hour drive south of their Peddler’s Village tasting room. The tasting room was quite a surprise set up in a double store front with loads of wine related gifts, wines for purchase, art work and posters. Our host directed us to a large room next door to where we entered that was recently renovated. The room had been an art store prior to Chaddford’s expansion. The tasting room is large, well appointed and yes, well air conditioned with a beautiful mural of vineyards behind the wine bar. We sat at a table and our host, a knowledgeable and fun young lady named Kimberly set us up with glasses and crackers. Let me just say here that if you visit our site regularly you know we are big fans of the bold reds, especially Cabernets. So, as you can guess I was a little skeptical as to what we were about to taste. I was about to be pleasantly surprised. The tastings are set up with a selection of your choice of red or white for $7.00 or a Portfolio Collection of premium reds and whites for $10.00. The guys went with the classic reds selection while the ladies split a classic white and portfolio collection. My first surprise was to learn that Chaddsford grows their own Cabernet grapes right there at the vineyard in Pennsylvania. Quite a surprise as the growing season here in the Northeast is not quite long enough for Cabernet. I guess their very southern location not far from Delaware allows for the longer hang time. We tasted red selections of Pinot Noir, Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet, Chambourcin, Merican (take off on the Meritage name), a Bordeaux blend, Due Rossi a blend of Sangiovese and Barbera and Rubino a Super Tuscan blend. For the whites, a Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, and a Proprietors Reserve white. I will not go into descriptions and tasting here, you can visit their web site listed below for tasting notes and pricing on all Chaddsfords wines. What I will say is I was quite surprised by several of the reds. The Cabernet is a nice fruit forward and yes, big Cab. The color was a little strange to me as it was not that dark deep ruby purple color of most Cabs, it was somewhat more translucent in color. The big bold cab flavor was there though and as said I was pleasantly surprised. The Merican was also a big bold red with a nice finish. The Proprietors White, a blend of Seyval Blanc, Vidal Blanc and Vignoles, all regional grapes was a light crisp wine great for hot summer days that reminded me of a Sauvignon Blanc. My favorite of the day was the Chambourcin, very much like a good Zinfandel right down to the nice spicy finish. Chaddsford’s winemaker is Eric Miller, who also own Miller Estate Vineyards, gets credit for crafting some superb wines. We were all very happy with our tasting trip and vowed to try an overnight visit to Chaddsford’s Winery in the future. I highly recommend you visit their web site and the winery or Peddler’s Village tasting room, if you are in the area.
Visit Chaddsford web site at:

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