Brugger and I went to Martinsville last night and took Mum out for a pleasant, slightly belated birthday dinner at Rania's restaurant. Then, well before dawn's early light this morning, Ms. B. and I hit the road for the Blue Ridge Parkway and arrived at the mill/restaurant a bit before 8:00 a.m., their usual opening time. But how nice—we now come to find they're open at 7:30 a.m., which is a first (a very welcome first), so we were able to walk right in and get seated. Historically, there have been some very long, very cold pre-dawn waits, as the staff would not unlock those doors till the striking of the hour, no matter the bitter elements patrons might face. An autumn trip to Mabry Mill has been tradition in my family for just about as far back as I can remember, and I love nothing better these days than keeping it going. You know, for the longest time, I've said Halloween is my favorite holiday, and I reckon it is, but the best day of the Halloween season is the one where Brugger and I make the Parkway Pilgrimage. Due to weather and other conditions, things worked out a little differently than planned today, but it still turned out to be everything we hoped it would.
|A wee bit blustery on the mountaintop|
|Brugger talked me down from Lover's Leap.|
|Pretty, but not much fall color yet this year. The peak is about a week late.|
We were the first customers to arrive, so we ended up having an excellent tasting and some entertaining and educational conversation about Italian wine with our hosts. After the tasting, we carried a couple of glasses with us down to the garden terrace area, which is the best place we know to drink wine, and there... we drank wine: delicious Sangiovese and Toscanello for me, and a fine Aglianico for the nice lady. Also following tradition, we had packed a picnic lunch, which we destroyed in a fairly spectacular feeding frenzy.
After all that, we had thought to perhaps check out some wine at Chateau Morrisette winery, which we frequently include in our plans, but once we arrived there, we ran into an all-but-impassable wall of humanity (mostly engaging in sweet wines, it appeared; oh, ye poor unsnobbish souls), so we opted to forego the Morrisette experience and return to Casa de Rodan for a couple of episodes of Netflix's The Haunting of Hill House, which we have been enjoying. We both love the restaurant at Chateau Morrisette, but I'm afraid we haven't had many stellar experiences at the winery. It's generally mobbed, the wines are fair at best, and the service is hit-or-miss (we've had at least as many misses as hits). So though we cut the outing a little shorter than anticipated, our alternate plan worked out much more to our liking.
And what all this means for you, ladies and gentleman, is that Halloween may now come. We accept donations via cash, Paypal, and all major credit cards as tokens of your appreciation.
|Stopping for a little love on the way to the cache|
|Waiting for the dead to perform|
|Waiter! Where's my wine?!|
|Oh, there it is. And a nice lady in the bargain. Happy horrorween!|