The Case of Wine: Barboursville Vineyards

28 Sep

That’s right, I’m back to the bottle.

Our featured object today is a wine bottle from Barboursville Vineyards, 1979.

Barboursville Cabernet Sauvingnon Wine Bottle, 1979

Label Detail, Barboursville Wine Bottle, 1979

Barboursville is one of the most richly filled historical properties in the Monticello region.  Though the vineyard and winery are far more recent additions- they were established in 1976- the property has a history that dates back to the early nineteenth century.

Barboursville Ruins

The property was originally owned by James Barbour, a lawyer, politician, and the first Governor of Virginia to reside in the Governor’s mansion.  But the mansion he is better known for here in Charlottesville is the Barboursville residence- now Barboursville ruins- built by Thomas Jefferson in 1814-1822.

Barboursville Ruins today

As the story goes, an aging Mr. Jefferson constructed the property over the course of eight years.  It was one of only three residential properties he designed, and reflects the characteristic Jeffersonian style we see around UVA Grounds and Monticello today.  His design incorporated an octagon room, a dome (never constructed), and even serpentine walls in the garden.

Sadly, we can no longer fully enjoy the architecture, as the house caught fire on Christmas Eve 1884, allegedly starting from live candles on an overly dry Christmas tree.  All that remains of the house are the ruins seen above, but if you make the trip to Barboursville, you can still walk around and explore the property and nearby Barbour family cemetery.

And of course, be sure to stop in to the winery to enjoy a tour by their fabulous guides, and sip or twelve of their delicious wines!

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