We arrived at Monticello, on the outskirts of Charlottesville early afternoon after an easy drive from the east coast of Jamestown.
Monticello is well known as it was where Thomas Jefferson lived – nowadays it is a UNESCO world heritage site.
It is perched up on a hillside and as such offers the most spectacular of views from the estate- we were lucky to have exceptionally beautiful sunshine and clear skies. Walking around the grounds of his estate we learned more about enslaved workers, and also Jefferson’s love of homegrown food and drink. He had the most phenomenal kitchen garden terrace perched overlooking all the vineyards. You could see for miles.
The house was spectacular. We didn’t know that Jefferson was a keen inventor – we saw loads of his gadgets from his time that he had made to make life easier for him and his family. We mused that if he were alive now, we were sure he’d love the smart home technology.
After a great afternoon, it was time to move to our accommodation for the next two nights – the English Inn. Unfortunately it wasn’t a smooth check in, they’d got no record of us despite us paying, but it got rectified and thankfully they could offer us a room.
We had a very quick change before catching the courtesy hotel shuttle into town for an evening of sampling Charlottesville’s local food and drink. Charlottesville is home to the University of Virginia, and therefore has lots of great and fun places to dine and drink. Our shuttle dropped us outside the whiskey jar, so we popped in and drank their local gin and beer before moving almost next door to Millers, for more of the same. We decided to eat at Millers as it was busy, the menu looked good and reasonable priced. We went for two local dishes, including fried chicken and gravy, which looked awful but was amazing! The drinks flowed, and we were happily chatting to the bar man and the locals. We liked this place!
We turned in around 9.30pm – a late night for us so far haha! We were a bit squiffy but had had fun in Charlottesville.
Thursday – my birthday!
For the first time since we’d arrived we didn’t need to set the alarm! It was my birthday – and we were having a chill. We were supposed to be on a bus tour to the local vineyards but sadly it got cancelled, so Keefy stepped in and decided to take me to the vineyards anyway, he would just be DES.
From Charlottesville there are absolutely loads of Virginian vineyards right on your doorstep. We chose to visit Veritas, which has been there for 30 years and has over 50 acres of vineyards. I enjoyed their wine tasting flight, whilst Keith had to spit! One of the reasons we was ted to visit Veritas was that their garden was huge and looked out over the Virginian countryside. Oh, it was just beautiful. I sat there with a glass of their white and it was just wonderful.
Next up was The Blue Mountains brewery. We had lunch here – sadly our visit coincided with a couple of bus loads, so they were run off their feet! Service didn’t suffer too much though, and our food was lovely. It was wasn’t so serene and as peaceful with all the tourists!
We took a few takeouts back for our room and made the journey back to our hotel. Keith did a really good job driving – it was out of his comfort zone completely, but I really appreciated him doing it so I could enjoy some wine and beer.
We had a fairly quick change before heading back into the town of Charlottesville on the shuttle for an afternoon and evening wander and drinks and more food. We really loved the vibe of Charlottesville and ended up back at millers for more fried chicken! It was so good!
I’d had a brilliant birthday sampling as much food and drink as I could! A perfect day!