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About this Episode

Certified sommelier Michaela Quinlan, and Robert Tas review the wine list at The Red Fox, a restaurant renowned for locally sourced, four-course dining with local wine pairings. They also offer Pub fare and an exceptional wine list. Michaela reviews the best wines on the list, including a Viognier that is a perfect companion to herb-roasted chicken and salmon, a Cabernet Franc that is an excellent pairing with herbed and savory dishes, and a remarkable blend of zinfandel, petit syrah, and Carignane.

Wines reviewed include:

  • 2020 Pollak Vineyards Viognier, Greenwood, VA

  • 2021 Argiolas, Costamolino Vermentino, Southern Italy

  • 2017 Gimenez Mendez, Alta Reserva Tennat, Uruguay

Transcript: The Red Fox

Red Fox Inn


RT: Hello and welcome to CorkRules! 

A podcast where, in each episode, we will review a wine list from your favorite restaurants.

I’m your host Robert Tas along with Michaela Quinlan, certified sommelier.

Hello Michaela, it’s great to be back together for another episode.

MQ: Hi Robert!

RT: Before we jump in, let’s talk about CorkRules.

We created CorkRules our mobile app and our podcast’s to demystify wine lists because we know from experience, that sometimes when we get that  list handed to us, well… it can be intimidating, and even a little daunting.

Our aim is to help prepare you to navigate that list, find those hidden gems, or value wines or that special bottle that will take your dining experience over the top.

RT: So, sit back and listen as we review your favorite wine list.

RT: Today we are talking about the Red Fox Inn and Tavern, part of Virginia’s Hunt Country, in Middleburg, VA. Located one hour West of Washington DC, the historic Red Fox Inn and Tavern has been operating since 1728, and is truly a must visit.

Michaela, I can’t wait to hear what you think of their wine list.

MQ: The Red Fox features locally sourced, four-course dining with local wine pairings, along with Pub fare and their exceptional wine list. Today we will be featuring a number of local wines, along with Old and new World favorites.

RT: That’s really great. As you looked at the list did you see anything jump out at you?

MQ: We must begin with a local white wine. Consider the 2020 Pollak Vineyards Viognier from Greenwood, VA. With origins in Southern France, Viognier thrives in Virginia. This aromatic white wine features ripe green apple, dried apricot, ripe peach, with bright acidity and a creamy finish, as a  small portion of the wine ferments in barrel. This Viognier is a perfect companion to herb-roasted chicken and salmon.

RT: That is for sure unique. Did you find any others that caught your eye right away?

MQ: Another local consideration would be the 2021 Early Mountain Vineyards, Shenandoah Valley Cabernet Franc from Madison, VA. Aromatic as well, this Cabernet Franc is well-balanced featuring notes of ripe blackberries, and black cherries, with black pepper, earth, mushrooms, ripe tannins, and a long finish. Cabernet Franc is an excellent pairing with herbed and savory dishes.

RT: So Michaela, their list seems to have lots of range but was there anything that you would say is a “must-try”?

MQ: A classic producer to consider would be the JJ Prum, Graacher Himmelreich, Spatlese Riesling from Mosel, Germany. Spatlese means ‘late harvest’, which indicates this Riesling is on the sweeter end of the spectrum. Keep in mind Kabinet is less sweet, and Trocken indicates a drier Riesling. This Spatlese balances sweetness with tropical fruit, ripe peach, and cantaloupe. Fresh acidity with white flowers and a saline note on the finish add to the pleasure of this wine. Pair this Riesling with charcuterie and spicy dishes.

RT: These are some great calls.

So you know I’m getting thirsty and will need to order a bottle with my dinner, where would you guide us?

MQ: Another classic producer to consider to pair with dinner is the 95-point rated Ridge Vineyards, Lytton Springs, from Healdsburg, CA. This remarkable blend of Zinfandel, Petit Sirah, and Carignane is rich and full-bodied with notes of ripe red cherries, ripe raspberries, plumb, black pepper, and lavender, with round tannins and a mineral finish. Pair this rich red with proteins such as beef and lamb.

RT: Ooh, Terrific.

Michaela, speaking of price, sometimes people have a budget in mind.  Any other great value wines you’d point us to? 

MQ:  If you are seeking a quality/value white wine to pair with seafood, cheese, or as a refreshing aperitif, consider the 2021 Argiolas, Costamolino Vermentino from Southern Italy. This light, fresh white wine is a beautiful alternative for fans of Sauvignon Blanc. With bright acidity, lime zest, ripe peach, Meyer lemon, grapefruit, with a note of saline on the finish. This is truly a crowd-pleasing white wine.

RT: That sounds great. What is your other value selection?

MQ: For the bold red wine drinkers in search of that hidden quality/value bottle, consider the 2017 Gimenez Mendez, Alta Reserva Tennat from Uruguay. This well-balanced, robust red features firm tannins, ripe red cherries, blackberries, and plumb, along with earth, mushroom, black pepper, clove, and nutmeg on the lingering finish. An excellent companion to all richly sauced proteins and pasta. 

RT: Now Michaela, what if I have a big client dinner or special occasion where I want to take it up a notch?

MQ: To add to your dining experience at this beautiful, historic inn, consider the classic 2017 Le Pauillac de Chateau Latour in Bordeaux, France. First crafted in 1989, the Pauillac de Latour ages beautifully, but is also stellar when enjoyed young. This Left Bank blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Petit Verdot, showcases your classic Bordeaux characteristics, such as ripe black cherries, currants, cassis, leather, vanilla, and cigar smoke, with ripe, round tannins. This iconic producer never fails to impress. Enjoy this standout bottle during any special occasion, or your next trip to Hunt Country.

RT: Michaela Thank you so much for all your great suggestions and helping us navigate Red Fox Inn’s wine list. I can’t wait to go try them myself. 

To our audience, thank you all for joining us here on CorkRules.

If you would like us to review one of your favorite restaurants, please send us email to: Info@CorkRules.Com or visit our web website or app where we have a request form available and we will do our best to get it in the queue as quickly as possible.

We are looking forward to being with you on another CorkRules episode soon. In the meantime, please check out our CorkRules app that has all your favorite restaurants wine lists with personalized recommendations and you can connect with your friends.

And finally, drink what you love and please make sure you drink responsibly.

Thank you.




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