If you happen to live below the Mason Dixon line around March, I consider you to be pretty lucky this time of year.
In New York, mid-March meant that there was a pretty good possibility that more snow was on the horizon. I have a vivid memory of the winter before I came to Tennessee, when I returned from a spring break trip and our little town was pummeled with a significant blizzard. You can imagine my disdain at being nicely tanned (well, freckled) and having to bundle up to go outside and shovel the driveway because the cars couldn’t get out.
Those times are gone (and so are our shovels) and this weekend was a testament to everything I adore about living in the South. The weather was perfect – 80 degrees with a cerulean sky mixed with the occasional cotton ball cloud. The kicker? It’s still technically winter! At least until tomorrow, we are still in the same season that harbors Christmas. I honestly don’t know if I will ever get used to being able to wear flip flops in the winter, but I love it so much.
We headed Nashville-ward on Friday night to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with some good friends. We stopped at my parents to snag some corned beef and cabbage (num) and whatever other food I could rummage from the pantry. My name is Kate. I am 26, and I still steal food from my parents house.
After our St. Paddy’s day festivities subsided (yes there were car bombs, in both the cupcake and drink form) and I woke up without a hangover (joy!) I knew I wanted to head to Arrington Vineyards to enjoy the weather.
The boy and I went here on a whim last Fall, and I loved it. It’s a beautiful hillside winery just outside Nashville, partially owned by Kix Brooks (of Brooks & Dunn). They have dozens of picnic tables set up throughout the property and on our first visit there we didn’t know what to expect so we didn’t bring anything to eat. Arrington does sell assorted goodies on site (cheese, crackers, and chocolate) but nothing too substantial so we made sure to stop by the store and pick up some good picnic essentials on our way out.
Once you get to the winery, you can sign up for a free tasting. I’m never one to turn down free alcohol, so after a short wait, we headed to the tasting lodge to sample the wines they had to offer.
Tennessee is not known for their wines. Most of the tastings I’ve gone on have displayed extraordinarily sweet wines, which are not my thing. Thankfully Arrington wines are not. Some are delicious, complex, and really quite good.
After our tasting, we headed outside (did I mention how absolutely beautiful it was?) with our bottle of Riesling and enjoyed soaking up some sun. One of my roommates from UT happens to live in Nashville, so I called her and her husband up to join us. Luckily, she had another good friend from school staying with her (who I hadn’t seen in forever) so it turned in to quite a reunion. Who doesn’t love reunions? (especially when wine is involved.)
I also learned two very important things yesterday:
- Voigner is pronounced “Vee-Own-Yay” (oopsies). Count me in as one of those jackasses that pronounces wines incorrectly.
- If it’s sunny out…wear sunscreen. I got all kinds of sunburned yesterday. I guess I underestimated the sun’s rays in March (another oopsies) and had to spend my night being slathered with aloe.
If you get a chance to head to Nashville during your travels and the weather is nice, I highly recommend taking a trip out to Arrington. The scenery is beautiful, the wine is tasty, and if you’re lucky enough to have good friends with you – can be the perfect Sunday Funday!