Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Serpent Ridge Vineyard: On the Maryland Wine Trail

About a half-hour away from Baltimore, nestled in the hills a short drive off Interstate 70 with a Westminster, Maryland, mailing address, is a small but vibrant vineyard called Serpent Ridge Vineyard

We drove there on a cold winter's day to experience some Maryland wines and spend a Saturday exploring part of the Maryland Wine Trail. This was the first stop of our day, and I have to admit, despite all of my advice about prior planning to ensure enjoyable visits to wineries, this was a spur of the moment decision that we definitely did not regret. 

Although getting to the vineyard does require some navigation skills, the way is well marked, although I drove past the entrance to the vineyard on the first pass.
Serpent Ridge Vineyard Tasting Room

The tasting room is well marked with ample parking. Although we visited the tasting room during winter with snow on the ground, I believe that this would be an ideal place to spend a Friday evening or Saturday afternoon sipping some wine and enjoying the natural beauty of the area and the vineyards.

The wines are solid and offer some unique characteristics. One wine is made from a Spanish grape, Albarino, yielding a white wine with a nice combination of flavors and minerality. The 2011 Albarino was a nice sipping wine and I think would go well with soft cheeses.

Overall, the whites produced by Serpent Ridge were very tasty and well done. I found the reds to be on the light side and not full-bodied. They did possess an interesting interpretation of the grapes which I found enjoyable. Of the reds, I found the 2011 Basilisk, a red blend, to be especially interesting. 

RECOMMENDATION: Definitely worth a visit. The tasting room is small, but well run. The staff was very knowledgeable about the wines and the history of the vineyard. Check the website for hours.

-- Bob and Christina Doan, Elkridge, MD

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