Spring Flowers



VIP Wines of the Month

Report from the Tasting Room
Report from the Cellar
Report from the Farm 

Report from The Little River Bakehouse
Report from Locksley Farmstead Cheese

Note from Jenni

May, 2020 VIP Club Selections

When the last newsletter reached you we were still shifting gears everyday, trying to figure out how to operate under constantly changing guidelines. Since then we have settled into our new "normal" routine and we appreciate all the business that our loyal customers have been continuing to provide. We are now offering pickup window service for wine, cheese, pizza and other food purchases. We can also deliver to your car by ordering ahead and calling the tasting room when you arrive. 

Chef Keaton and his crew have done an outstanding job switching over to pizza service 7 days a week, while also baking fresh sourdough, white bread, baguettes, pita chips, and crostini.  They also created a new item that has been a big hit... take-home pizza kits! Kits contain pizza dough, house-made marinara sauce, mozzarella cheese, pepperoni (other toppings can be added), and instructions. They're really easy to make, delicious, and alot of fun, too!

We're all doing our best to keep the farm up and running during these difficult times... caring for the animals, tending to crops, working on our wines, making cheese... so that we're still here when we can return to more normal operations. We're also doing all this for YOU, our customers. We want to make sure you still have access to fresh, local food  and, of course, wine. This tragedy has helped to emphasize the importance of locally sourced products. When we can't rely on suppliers from around the globe, it's your local farmers and small businesses that are still here to help you so, help THEM. Place an online order or visit a business with take-out or curbside service. I think you'll discover that the best products are made right here in your backyard!

Due to our current operating restrictions related to the COVID-19 virus, we will not be holding our monthly VIP pickup party in May. Stay healthy and we will see you when things return to normal!

Our hours are 12:00pm - 6:00pm Monday - Thursday, 12:00pm - 8:00pm Friday and Saturday, and 12:00pm - 7:00pm Sunday. We have great wine, hot pizza, take-home pizza kits, farmstead cheese, fresh bread, eggs, and more - all availble 7 days a week. You can place your order ahead of time by calling 540-687-8222 or stop by to place your order at the window.

The white wine selection for our VIP Club members this month is Chrysalis Vineyards 2018 Sarah's Patio White. Originating in Condrieu in the Northern Rhone region of France, Viognier has found a home in Virginia and has become the signature white varietal in the Commonwealth. Chrysalis Vineyards has been producing award-winning Viognier since the late 1990s. Our Viognier exhibits a rich mouth feel from the sur lie and battonage technique or “stirring of the lees” and a slight crisp acidity on the tip of the palate. Subtle rose and honey suckle greet the nose with white peaches and nectarines ripe on the tongue. Viognier always pairs best with roasted chicken and sautéed vegetables, but it can be enjoyed with or without a meal. Try this vintage with a dinner of roasted chicken, garlic mashed potatoes, and sautéed green beans.

Our red wine selection for June is Chrysalis Vineyards 2017 Petit Verdot, one of our six 100% Norton wines. The first impression is aromas of raspberry and currant followed by blackberry and mocha. This medium-bodied red pairs best with fatty meats and red sauces lke a big plate of spaghetti alla puttanesca!

As a reminder to our members, all VIP wine is available for pickup at the Ag District Center tasting room anytime during regular business hours. If you can’t make it out to pick up your wines on a monthly basis, we will hold them for you. Due to storage limitations, however, we do ask that you pick them up once you accumulate a case (6 months). We can also arrange for wine to be shipped to most locations, at your request.

Also, please remember that you can always find your paired recipes and detailed tasting notes at www.ChrysalisWine.com in the Private VIP Club Area. Also check in with us or follow us on Facebook for updates and announcements.

NOTE: Please do not reply to this emailed Newsletter. Your email will not be handled in a timely manner or may even be lost.


Get Great Food & Wine!

What a perfect view! As much as we would love to have the building and grounds filled with customers, those mask covered smiles in our pickup window are a beautiful sight! We've actually been pleasantly surprised by the number of people who venture up our hill each day to pick up bread, eggs, pizza, cheese, wine and other goodies. We've always known how good our products are and we're excited that more of our local friends are discovering that, too!

We're here seven days a week to continue bringing you the best local products, so go to our website, call in your order or just stop in! We appreciate your business, so please continue to support local, support agriculture..... support US!

Laurie Stevens, Tasting Room Manager


Bottling Our Wines

This month has been a whirlwind of excitement, another round of bottling and more fantastic wines started off the month. As always, I won’t spoil the line up, but this bottling was a lot fun for the production crew. I can also proudly say the 2019 reds have officially been racked!  

Since we only have a short time before the July bottling,  we turn our attention to evaluating the red wines. After the racking process, we give the wine a few more weeks in barrel before tasting them again. As always, we assess wines for quality and profile. While it’s much too early to bottle the 2019 Norton Locksley Reserve, Jason and I will begin working on candidate blends. The Norton Locksley Reserve is Chrysalis Vineyard’s flagship wine and requires very careful consideration of every component from the barrels used; to the exact percentage of Tannat, Petit Verdot, and Norton.

We use these components because Tannat is known to be extremely tannic and abrasive on the palate and requires proper aging in barrel, usually around 12-16 months just to smooth it out. Tannat also ages well in the bottle, softening up and becoming more approachable as time passes. Our Petit Verdot provides good tannin structure with desirable plum and violet aromatics, making it a perfect blender to elevate bold red wines. Norton provides the perfect amount of lush fruit and beautiful color. With the proper amount of new French oak and careful consideration of tannin, acid, and structure, we are able to produce a wine perfect for bottle aging, while showcasing what Norton is really capable of!

Jake Blodinger, Assistant Winemaker


More Growth!

The vineyard has sprung to life and bloom is not far away. With the abundance of rain lately the vineyard is pushing shoots ranging anywhere from 6 -12 inches.  It is wonderful to see the vigorous growth of a new growing season, but constant care is always required. Before bloom the crew focuses on shoot thinning. We select the healthiest, strongest shoots to encourage quality fruit development. Once shoot thinning is finished the crew turns their attention to training the new shoots through the various catch wires.

Our vinifera varieties are actually planted on a trellis system called “Vertical Shoot Position”, or VSP for short. This particular system trains the shoot to grow up through a series of wires that help keep it in a vertical position, hence the name.  This trellis system helps with sunlight and ensuring uniform fruit development. 

Our Norton is grown on a separate trellis system called “Geneva Double Curtain”, GDC for short. Norton is Virginia’s grape and like most native varieties it grows vigorously. GDC assits in managing Norton’s dense canopy by splitting the growth horizontally over the top and allowing sunlight to reach the interior of the canopy, thus encouraging proper fruit development. As the shoots grow over the wire and eventually towards the ground, they form a “curtain” that creates shade for the fruit during the early and late parts of the day when photosynthesis is not occurring as much.

Jake Blodinger, Assistant Winemaker


Pizza of the Week - 5/1 - 5/7/20

Hello form the Little River Bake house up here on Tasting Room Hill. I just wanted to thank everybody that has come out and gotten a pizza or loaf of bread and helping to support us through all of this. We are entering phase 1 of reopening which fills me with very nervous excitement, as we try to adjust to the changes please help us out with your continued patience and adaptability. Some of the safety precautions we are taking is daily wellness check up of our staff implementing mandatory face masks while on premise and constantly and fastidiously sanitizing and cleaning. Our outdoor seating will be coming available during Phase 1 and we have spread out our picnic tables so that you can catch some sun and fresh air as you dine or imbibe with us, we will have some of our staff patrolling the grounds to make sure everything is staying compliant with the phased reopening. All I ask from our customers is to please respect the face mask rule unless you are eating and drinking and if you have any symptoms to please come back on day when you are certain you are not infected with anything that could be passed on to our staff and other customers.

Now that the serious stuff is out of the way how about we talk grub. I will be introducing some new menu items as we reopen to limited dining in, these options include fresh made Paninis,  a Charcuterie plate and adding some of our best selling pizza specials over the course of this pandemic to our regular pizza menu. This past weekend we had some complications with our pizza oven causing us to shift gears again, because my pizza conquest must go on, and switch from propane to cooking with wood fire. Cooking with wood is one of my favorite ways to cook because it makes it just a bit harder and always presents a challenge, like making sure the fire doesn't get out of hand but can still burn hot enough and steady enough to maintain a pizza oven for 10 or more hours. My wood fire cookery experience has been limited to BBQ and grilling for the most part so baking with it is presenting a new set of challenges to overcome but this is the era of pivoting and adjusting to new problems everyday. I hope everybody is staying safe and healthy out there, both physically and mentally and I hope to have you out for a pizza pie soon.

Keaton Beus, Little River Bakehouse Manager


Goofy Cow!June is dairy month! 2020 marks the 83rd annual celebration of this nutritious and delicious category of products! Dairy products including milk, yogurt and CHEESE provide important nutritional benefits through high-quality proteins, vitamins A and D as well as minerals such as calcium to keep your bones strong and healthy. Did you know that there are 8 grams of protein in just ONE, 8 oz cup of milk?  Not to mention milk is the freshest product you can buy at grocery stores near you, from farm to store in just 48 hours! Milk is a local food that definitely fits the clean eating trend! What better way to end a work-out than with a big glass of my personal favorite, chocolate milk. Proven to be the best post-workout beverage for muscle recovery and energy replenishment. Celebrate World Milk Day on June 1st with us and dairy farmers around the world by raising a big glass of your favorite white, chocolate or strawberry milk beverage!   I challenge you all for the month of June to celebrate dairy month with us by snapping a photo enjoying our cheeses or perhaps an artisan pizza from the Little River Bake House that is topped with our stringy, mouth-watering Mozzarella.  Be sure to tag us @LocksleyCheese on Instagram and Facebook, using the hashtags #NationalDairyMonth and #UndeniablyDairy ! I can't wait to see all of your wonderful pictures and ways you are enjoying our cheeses along with all of your other favorite dairy products this month! Stop by the Ag District Center pickup window any day of the week, for your favorite Locksley Farmstead Cheeses and Little River Bakehouse Artisan Pizzas.  Join us in celebrating June is Dairy Month (even though we think every month should be dairy month) and remember, three servings of dairy a day!

Erin Saacke, Assistant Cheesemaker

Note from Jenni
Empty Chairs!


Just read these reports from our managers here: Teri, Fredy, Erin, Steven, Jake, Keaton and Nate. I’m so proud of them. They’re all keeping the farm going strong… pruning, tying and caring for the vines, making the wines (BTW, GREAT vintage… just you wait!), feeding and caring for the animals, managing the pastures… not to mention milking the cows twice a day, and making delicious cheeses, all in addition to handling all the admin and maintenance and cutting and wrapping and packing and labeling and shipping. Lots of work, under a lot of stress. Wow, indeed!

You know what’s missing, though? YOU! (BTW, shout out to all of you who’ve braved the scare and come out to buy our stuff. Thank you, thank you.) All of our hard work is made worthwhile… and yes, made fun and pleasurable, by being able to share and have our work and products appreciated by our friends, family and customers. We miss you; we really do. Over the years, I’ve reminded my colleagues in agriculture that we don’t raise cows and grow grapes because we want to “make a killing”. We do it for the fulfillment, for being able to bring something good to our communities, and to ourselves; to share our joy in making our land productive, and to make food from that land when there once was none.

We need you. Our supporters and customers are part of the mix. In spite of how bleak things might appear right this moment, our team and I remain optimistic that we’ll come through this successfully. There are some interesting (and promising) changes that are occurring. People are positively responding to our calls for help. We’ve had a number of people tell us that they have driven past our entrance for years, but never stopped in. Some have become repeat customers in just the last few days, despite the fact that all they can currently do is pick up an order and leave.

I believe folks have been jolted out of a sense of complacency and apathy about their food and where it comes from. I ‘believe they’re beginning to wake up to the fact that having safe and nutritious food produced by healthy folks and their healthy animals, just down the street, is very valuable. It IS. (BTW, Teri and I have been goofing around playing with words on this theme: like, “Good pizza is not made in a hut, and don’t be surprised if eating pizza made from mystery ingredients out of a truck from mystery sources has a bad domino effect on your wellbeing.” Hah! Just joking… but, come try Keaton’s pizza. You know where the lion’s share of its ingredients is coming from, and man, is it tasty!

Please support your local agriculture. That’s US… get it! Take a short drive into the healthy countryside and get your wine (yes, it’s essentialJ), your hot pizza/foods, breads, cheeses, eggs and other goodies right here from our farm.

Take care,


Jennifer McCloud
Chrysalis Vineyards at The Ag District
39025 John Mosby Highway (Tasting Room/Creamery/Kitchen)
23876 Champe Ford Road (Winery/Milking Center/Offices)
Middleburg, VA 20117

Office: 540-687-8222



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