Tomahawk Mill Vineyard wins the award for coolest tasting room – a 19th century flower mill that looks like it can get right back into operation. Winemaker and co-owner Corky Medaglia was already pouring for a visitor, but other than that I had the place to myself. I wandered around the lovely grounds first before I headed inside.
The Medaglias purchased the mill in 1996 in what must have been a pique of madness – the same madness that seems to overcome many aspiring wine makers when they lay their eyes on a piece of historic property that also has a vineyard. Currently they have 4 acres of vines and make around 800 cases/year.
Corky was unintentionally hilarious. A Navy vet who spent some time in Greece, he obviously spends a lot of time chatting up his patrons. While he originally wanted to put the mill back in operation, Corky seems content to let it be while he concentrates on the wine. Tomahawk is open nearly year round, but festivals seem to be where they move most of their wine.
The wines were an eclectic mix of sweet, dry, plus a few outliers. What I tried:
Anister: A Greek-inspired wine that was gin-like. Made of Chardonnay but fermented in pine. Saying it was ‘different’ is an understatement, as that pine really came through.
Non-vintage Chardonnay: Oaked, light with an almost honey flavor.
Chambourcin: Very fruity.
Tobacco Road blues: Chambourcin and Cabernet Sauvignon blend; reminded me of the 100% Chambourcin but not quite as fruity.
Apple wine: Favorite of the lineup. This tasting continued a trend of fruit wine being some of the biggest hits during my visit to this area.
Vidal Blanc: No offense to anybody, but this is just not my grape!
Sweet Concord: Sweet but actually had some bite to it.
Mead: “Old Style” mead; nothing but water and honey.