A Vinter’s Job is Neverending!

A Vinter’s Job is Neverending! By Doug Fabbioli There always seems to be a sense of relief once the first hard frost comes that knocks our grape leaves to the ground. The high priority of tending to those vines over the past seven months drops like the leaves themselves. The fruit has long been in […]

Harvesting Through a Hurricane

By Doug Fabbioli Harvesting Through a Hurricane This game of grape growing and winemaking in the Mid-Atlantic region has its ups and downs. For the record, I believe this has been the hardest growing season I have encountered of my 22 seasons in Virginia. The rains, the heat, the humidity, the rain, the lack of […]

And Here We Go Again!

By Doug Fabbioli And Here We Go Again! Fruits of the season are singing to the farmer with sweet smells of ripeness. The red berry aromas and dark colors from the raspberry patch, the citrus floral characters from the hops and the color change on the grapes; these are all signs that we need to […]

Full Speed Farming!

Full Speed Farming! By Doug Fabbioli One of the parts of farming that I learned is how important timing is in the success of your operation. It’s best to work the weeds when they are small because the work is fast. Once those weeds get big, the energy has been absorbed in the weeds rather […]

It’s a Family Affair!

It’s a Family Affair! By Doug Fabbioli Vineyard and winery operations have traditionally been family owned businesses. If the family is strong, oftentimes the winery is strong as well. In the case of a start-up winery, the pressure can be hard on a family, especially a young one. I have been a Boy Scout leader […]

Making the Most Success From a Failure

By Doug Fabbioli Making the Most Success From a Failure As you may know, I tend to enjoy watching movies. At the end of Apollo 13, the mission was described as a successful failure, in that the astronauts did not land on the moon but they did get back home safely. The work that was […]

Trading Cards Arn’t Just for Baseball!

Trading Cards Arn’t Just for Baseball! By Doug Fabbioli The rural team of Loudoun County’s Economic Development Department started a unique program a couple of years back. On opening day of the Major League Baseball season, in conjunction with the Loudoun County Public School Nutrition Services, they release a series of Farmer Trading Cards. The […]

Dogs, breweries and building regulations, where are the Virginia Wineries going?

By Doug Fabbioli Dogs, breweries and building regulations, where are the Virginia Wineries going? The ball keeps bouncing and the vines keep growing. I have seen a lot of change in the Virginia Wine scene over the past 21 years – from great improvements in red wine quality to high profile owners and investments purchasing […]

In Like a Lamb…..?

By Doug Fabbioli In Like a Lamb….? I remember growing up with the old saying describing March as “coming in like a lion and going out like a lamb.” As a young boy I learned how this saying can be turned around and adjusted to fit the weather of any particular March–it can just as […]

Crossing Over To Cocktails

By Doug Fabbioli Crossing Over To Cocktails Recently, I was asked to speak at a conference on collaboration. Ok, it’s not quite a big surprise me talking about collaboration. Anyway, the Cider Conference asked me to sit on a panel with other beverage industry folks to talk about why and how to work together. For […]