Sunday Summer Music Series: Ebb & Nova

Ebb & Nova is a northern Maryland based indie band made up of Matthew Purpora, Steven Bainbridge, and Lauren Padgett. Their music has been described as transcendent, uplifting, thought provoking, and musically innovative. Guitar and cello melodies match with a sweet and soulful voice to bring a unique sound to the music scene.

Join us for a relaxing Sunday afternoon at the vineyard. Pack a picnic or pick up something from our Grab and Go Food Market.

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Frederick Wine Festival

It’s a BIG Saturday for us.We’ll be at Frederick’s Inaugural Wine Festival . We’ll be serving up wine along Carroll Creek Linear Park along with 19 other Maryland Wineries.

Plus our Tasting Room is open from 11 am – 5 pm.

We hope to see you today!

BIG Paint Night

Come join local artist and educator Kim Brown for some BIG Painting. You will enjoy our wine with an artistic flare as Kim guides your through the painting process. Have some fun with friends Friday night with a creative twist. Tickets are $30 per person and are limited to 40 people per event. Get yours today.

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4th of July Weekend Celebration

We’ve got a full weekend of events planned to celebrate the 4th of July.

Today we have the East Coast Stroke Band from 2:00 – 5:00 pm, special vendors, and old-fashioned children’s games from 1:00 – 2:00 pm;

  • Sack races
  • Water balloon toss
  • Hula hoop contest
  • 3-legged race

The Big Field is open for games, picnics and of course sipping wine.

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{free} Friday Night Music: Ted Chapman As “Shady Lane”

We’re thrilled to be featuring this experienced musician who has been captivating audiences for 50 years! Join us for a fun night of music from the 50s, 60s, 70’s and 80s. Pack a picnic, pick up something from our Grab and Go Market or enjoy the VA BBQ food truck.

Learn more about this amazing performer!

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{free} Friday Night Music: Jamie & James

You’re invited to stop in for some wine and eclectic music from D.C.’s Jamie & James. These singer/songwriters are quickly making a name for themselves with their authentic sound—a fresh musical recipe of indie, jazz and Americana, with a large helping of blues for good measure.

Looking forward to seeing you and your friends for this can’t miss event! Pack a picnic, pick up something from our Grab and Go Market or enjoy dinner from Linda’s Luncheonette food truck.

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{free} Friday Night Music: Tall Blond & Thirsty

Join us for our {free} Friday Night Music Series 6:00 – 9:00 pm as we welcome Andrew Elwood & Jill Fulton appearing as Tall Blond & Thursday. These “seasoned” musicians, cover country, rock, & blues cover and original songs. Pack a picnic, pick up something from our Grab and Go Food Market or enjoy something from Grandale Restaurant’s food truck.

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{free} Friday Night Music: Annie Stokes

We are pleased to welcome Annie Stokes to Big Cork Vineyards for our Free Friday Night Music Series from 6 pm – 9 pm.

This indie-folk musician from Virginia grew up in the nation’s capital on an eclectic mixture of musical theater, bluegrass, and classic Americana, her music is a fusion of city sounds and country soul. Although playing guitar only began as a hobby, soon her hometown was buzzing about “that girl who sounds like Jewel.” Annie’s lilting voice, poetic and introspective lyrics, and fingerpicking style draw listeners in with their rootsy and authentic feel. She has found, after years of making music and connecting with audiences, that when the artist prioritizes the song and the human experience upon which it is based, everything else falls into place.

Pack a picnic or purchase food from our Grab and Go Market.

{free} Friday Night Music: Hello Strangers

We’re delighted to welcome The Hello Strangers to our vineyard for our Free Friday Night Music Series. Join us from 6 pm – 9 pm.

The Hello Strangers is a Roots Americana band from Pennsylvania featuring the Original Songwriting and Sister Harmonies of Larissa Chace Smith and Brechyn Chace. Originally from Austin, Texas, the band’s influences include Classic Country Music, Alternative Country, Texas Folk and Roots Rock. Now residing in Pennsylvania, their inspiration also draws from traditional Appalachian and Folk Music. With haunting vocal harmonies and noir songwriting as the backbone of their sound, this female led five-piece band performs live regionally, as well as tours nationally.

Pack a picnic or purchase something to eat from our Grab and Go Food Market or enjoy something from this week’s food vendor Virginia BBQ Company.

{free} Friday Night Music: Veronneau

Join us from 6 pm – 9 pm for Veronneau. This International acoustic quartet has been captivating festival, concert hall and jazz club audiences across North America and Europe with their vocal and guitar based world-jazz. Their delicious blend of bossa nova, samba and swing is performed in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese. Pack a picnic or purchase something to enjoy from our Grab and Go Food Market or enjoy a tasty pizza from Riverhouse Pizza.

Roasted Duck Legs & Big Cork Vineyards Merlot

BC_Duck_PostIngredients:

6 large whole duck legs (about 4 1/2 pounds total), trimmed of excess fat
1/2 cup of Big Cork Vineyards Merlot
2 heads garlic, cloves separated and peeled
8 fresh thyme sprigs
1 cup mixed dried fruit such as dried sour cherries, chopped dried apricots, chopped pitted prunes, and raisins
5 cups chicken broth
Accompaniment: buttered noodles or roasted and mashed potatoes

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. and season duck legs with salt and pepper.

2. In a heavy kettle just large enough to hold legs in one layer, cook legs, skin sides down, over moderately high heat 10 to 15 minutes, or until skin in scrip and mahogany colored, removing fat from kettle as it is rendered with a metal bulb baster (or very carefully tilting the kettle and spooning off). Turn legs over and cook until browned on the other side, about 2 minutes, transferring to a plate.

3. Pour off fat from kettle and deglaze with wine, scraping up brown bits. Boil wine until reduced to a syrup and add garlic, thyme and 1/2 cup dried fruit. Return duck legs, skin sides up, to kettle and add broth. Bring mixture to a simmer and braise, uncovered, in oven 2 hours, or until legs are very tender. Transfer legs to a platter and keep warm.

4. Pour braising mixture into a 1-quart measuring cup and let stand until fat rises to the top. Skim off fat and pour liquid through a sieve into a saucepan, pressing hard on solids. Boil liquid until reduced by about one third and slightly thickened and add remaining 1/2 cup dried fruit. Simmer sauce until fruit is softened, about 5 minutes, and season with salt and pepper.

5. Serve duck legs with sauce and noodles or roasted and mashed potatoes. Pour remaining Big Cork Vineyards Merlot into glasses then cheers and enjoy!

Recipe Source: Epicurious 

Harvest Season at Big Cork Vineyards

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Early on a crisp September morning, Big Cork Vineyards’ master winemaker Dave Collins is busy beginning to harvest fresh Chardonnay grapes. Carefully going through each row of grapes, and tasting a few along the way, he confirms that they are fully ripe and ready to be turned into a delicious batch of Big Cork’s award winning wine. Harvesting season has officially begun.

The Clone 96 Chardonnay grapes that are being harvested were developed about 20 years ago in the Dijon Region of France, and grow extremely well at Big Cork Vineyards in Washington County, Maryland.  These Chardonnay grapes are carefully hand-harvested from the vines and fill the bushel sized blue “lugs” for transportation. After all the lugs are full, the grapes will chill overnight before heading off to be crushed in the morning.

“It’s been a really great year for growing,” Dave said as he admired his beautiful Chardonnay grapes. “The fruit is nice and golden and the sugars are testing at about 22 percent, or “brix” as it is called in the industry. Nice acids and great flavors.”

On top of harvesting the new batch of Chardonnay, Dave has to decide when all of the other grapes will be ripe and ready to go. As we walk around the 24-acre vineyard, sampling the Nebbiolo and Barbera grapes, he identifies that these red grapes are almost sweet enough for picking.

“I am really excited about standing here in front of our Nebbiolo vines. I just love this grape. It’s a grape that is grown in the Northern Piedmont region of Italy, but I have grown it in Virginia and now in Maryland for 15 years,” said Dave. “It is a very dark, rich, bold, tannic red wine that will age for many, many years.”

Dave and the Big Cork Vineyards crew wake up bright and early the next morning for the next, and very important, step in the harvest process: the crushing. They begin by meticulously hand sorting the fruit to ensure that only the best and clusters go to crusher.

After these perfect grapes are selected, they head up the conveyor belt to the crushing and de-stemming machine and are one step closer to becoming Big Cork Vineyards wine.

There, the grapes are separated from their stems during the de-stemming process. The stems fall into a bin, while the grapes are lightly crushed and continue their journey to the wine press.

The wine press resembles a large cylinder, and a vinyl membrane inside the press slowly inflates and the sweet juice is gently released from the berries.  From the press, the juice is pumped to a refrigerated stainless steel wine tank, where the juice is settled, then inoculated with special wine yeast, and the juice then slowly ferments over the course of three to four weeks.  Some of the juice will then be removed to ferment separately in French oak barrels, before being blended together and finally bottled in the spring.

We can’t wait until this fresh, Maryland grown wine is on the shelves!

Big Cork Pours at Maryland Wine Festival

Our Big Cork team had an incredible weekend pouring wine at the Maryland Wine Festival! For two days, our team uncorked bottles and filled glasses with our Sauvignon Blanc, Syrah Rose, Chardonnay, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Vidal Ice! We are amazed at the outflow of support we received, and the new Big Cork fans we gained! For everyone who was there, thank you for letting us fill your weekend with Big Cork wine, and we look forward to filling glasses at our tasting room late this fall!

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BIG CORK VINEYARDS WINS BIG AT 2014 WINE COMPETITIONS

Award-Winning Winery Recognized in Regional and National Wine Competitions 

Rohrersville, MD – Big Cork Vineyards, nestled in Maryland’s Pleasant Valley just west of Frederick, today announced it won numerous awards in multiple wine competitions for 2014, including Best of Class for the 2013 Traminette at the Long Beach Grand Cru, Double Gold for the 2013 Russian Kiss at the Indy International Wine Competition, and Best in Show for the “Best Dessert” Vidal Ice at the Maryland Governor’s Cup. The vineyard is set to open its grand winery and new 4,000 square foot sunlit tasting room in late fall.

Grown In Serbia, Vinted In Maryland, Winner at Indy Int’l

Russian Kiss

BCV 2013 Russian Kiss Wine

At the recent 2014 Indy International Wine Competition a wine called “Russian Kiss” from Big Cork Vineyards in Maryland won Best of Class in the White Vinifera Blend category. Indy International is known for showcasing new and exciting wines, but bestowing such an honor on a wine made from experimental Eastern European grapes is highly unusual. (That four judges selected “Russian Kiss” as their “Wine of the Year” is even more remarkable.)

Russian Kiss is a blend of Muscat Canelli and two little known grapes called “XIV” and “SK 77.” According to Big Cork’s general manager Heather Tapper,  “Two years ago, our winemaker Dave Collins tasted some experimental wines from several unnamed Russian grape varietals. The uniqueness of the Russian grapes led us to the conclusion that they are truly a special discovery in the viticulture world.” She said that the winery located “the only commercial vineyard growing these varietals” in the country, and immediately contracted grapes from them.

Click here to read full article >>

New kid on the bloc: Big Cork’s Russian Kiss takes double gold in Indy

Article By Paul Vigna

15582861-mmmain“Big Cork Vineyards and Bordeleau Vineyards & Winery scored big in Indianapolis at the ‘14 INDY international Wine Competition. Big Cork earned a DOUBLE GOLD for its Russian Kiss ’13, a blend of white varieties; a GOLD for Viognier ’13, SILVER for Traminette ’13, Chardonnay ’13, Cabernet Franc ’12 & Syrah ’13. Bordeleau garnered GOLD for its Chambourcin Lot 5 and SILVER for Malbec. Congratulations”

The twist is Big Cork’s win with its wine called Russian Kiss, a blend of Russian white varietals and Muscat Canelli. According to the Big Cork web site, “Fall in love with its strong floral notes and impressions of tangy kiwi and pineapple.”

The success of Big Cork, a new winery in western Maryland that soon will open its tasting room, reiterates the potential this region has for growing a number of different grapes. Russian hybrids and varietals could be part of that mix.

Click here to read full article >>

Big Cork Vineyards Winemaker Highlights Malbec Grapes

Big Cork’s Vice President of Operations & Master Winemaker Dave Collins highlights Malbec wines and discusses the ripening and harvesting process for these grapes.

Big Cork Vineyards Winemaker Showcases Syrah Grapes

Big Cork Vineyards Winemaker Dave Collins spotlights the Syrah grapes on the vineyard.

Patriot News: The End is Near – Grand opening for MD’s Big Cork Vineyards only a couple months off

Big Cork Clouds

Article By Paul Vigna

Big Cork Vineyards is located in Rohrersville, Md., about 10 miles west of Frederick and 70 miles northwest of Washington D.C.

What’s there now are a couple of solid vintages of bottled wine, a lot of vines, and a great deal of expectation as construction continues on a 4,000-square-foot winery and tasting room. It’s scheduled to open in the fall, and based on the photos looks like it’s on target.

The vineyards are planed across 24 acres and feature 13 varietals, making it one of the largest growing vineyards in Western Maryland, according to the winery.

Based off a press release, here’s some information on their team.

The Big Cork Vineyards team also brings a wealth of experience and expertise in the wine and hospitality industries.  For President and CEO Randy Thompson, the hillside of his family’s farm was truly a field of dreams. Amid the rows of corn and hay, Thompson envisioned a vineyard with a grand winery filled with guests experiencing unforgettable moments with every bottle of wine.  He brought on Vice President of Operations & Master Winemaker, Dave Collins, who brings more than 30 years of winemaking experience to Big Cork. The skilled vintner, who holds a degree in Horticulture from Virginia Tech, will oversee the growth and production of 24 acres and 13 varietals at Big Cork.
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RELEASE THE REDS! Award-­Winning Big Cork Vineyards Unveils First Line of Red Wines

Big Cork Vineyards, nestled in Maryland’s Pleasant Valley just west of Frederick, today announced the debut of its first line of red wines. Now Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and Pennsylvania wine enthusiasts who have been sipping on the vineyard’s award-winning white wines can enjoy Big Cork’s reds, including Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Big Cork’s Star Spangled Sangria

Celebrate Fourth of July with our refreshing and delicious Star Spangled Sangria!

Big Cork Vineyards Star Spangled SangriaIngredients:
2 cups Strawberries, sliced
1 cup Blueberries
Pineapple, cut into star shapes
2 bottles Big Cork Sauvignon Blanc
1 cup Triple Sec
½ cup berry-flavored vodka
½ cup simple syrup

Directions:
Combine the ingredients in a large pitcher and stir. Chill and refrigerate for at least four hours. Serve and enjoy celebrating!

Big Cork’s Red, Wine & Blue Spritzer

Happy Fourth of July! Celebrate the long weekend and show off your American pride with our Red, Wine & Blue Spritzer!

Big Cork Red Wine & Blue Spritzer

Ingredients:
4 ounces Big Cork Vineyards Traminette (chilled)
2 ounces club soda
4 Raspberries
8 Blueberries
3 Strawberries (1 for garnish)
Ice cubes

Directions:
In a mixing glass, muddle raspberries, blueberries, strawberries and Traminette until raspberries and strawberries are completely dissolved. Fill glass with ice and stir until fully incorporated. Pour (do not strain) into a serving glass and top with club soda. Sip and enjoy!

Big Cork’s Barbecue Beer Brisket

Our Barbecue Beer Brisket is delicious dish for Father’s Day! With the smokey flavors and hint of spiciness, it pairs best with Big Cork Vineyards’ Cabernet Sauvignon.

Prep: 10 minutes Cook TiBig Cork's BBQ Beer Brisketme: 5 hours

Ingredients:

4 pounds beef brisket
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon red cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons liquid smoke
1 cup barbecue sauce
1 cup beer (pick your favorite!)
Ciabatta bread (get enough for the number of sandwiches you want to make)

Directions: 

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Sprinkle both sides of the brisket with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and red cayenne pepper.  Place in a large covered roasting pan, add the liquid smoke on top and place in the oven, cooking one hour per pound. Before the last hour of cooking, remove the brisket and let it rest for 15 minutes. Then, slice the brisket and return the slices to the pan. Combine barbecue sauce and beer and pour over the slices. Then, place pan in oven for additional hour. Take the brisket out of the oven and let it rest for 15 minutes. Serve on ciabatta bread and top with BBQ sauce. Pair it with a side of potato salad or french fries and uncork a bottle of Big Cork Vineyards’ Cabernet Sauvignon to make the meal complete!

Big Cork’s Bourbon-Glazed Salmon

Big Cork's Bourbon Glazed SalmonOur Bourbon-Glazed Salmon is the perfect meal to create a fine-dinning experience right at your dinner table. The sweet notes from the brown sugar and soy sauce based marinade make it pair well with Big Cork Vineyards’ Syrah Rose wine.

Prep Time: 1 hour 45 minutes  Cook Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:
3 tablespoons bourbon
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon grated peeled fresh ginger
1 tablespoon lemon juice
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 (6-ounce) skinless salmon fillets

 

Directions:
Grate fresh ginger and combine with the bourbon, brown sugar, soy sauce, lemon juice and garlic in a large zip-loc bag. Marinate in the refrigerator for 1 ½ hours, turning occasionally to ensure it is coated well.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and coat pan with cooking spray. Add fish and marinade into the pan and cook four minutes on each side (or until fish flakes easily when tested with fork). Plate each fillet, drizzle remaining sauce on top and pair with brown rice and asparagus. Pour a glass of Big Cork Vineyards’ Syrah Rose wine and enjoy!

FOX Baltimore: Big Cork Shares Summer Wine Suggestions

Big Cork Vineyards (BCV) President Randy Thompson visited FOX Baltimore studio and talked with Megan Gilliland about our best wine selections for summer!

Big Cork Wine Bottling & New Wine Releases

May was a busy month at Big Cork Vineyards. We were hard at work bottling six different Big Cork wines: Viognier, Savignon Blanc, Syrah Rose, Merlot, Cabernet, Cabernet Franc and a new exciting varietal that only Big Cork is producing….Russian Kiss! Our first vintage of reds ever produced was bottled during this two day bottling marathon, and as the last case was corked, labeled, wrapped and packed we toasted our good fortune and our good wine with a glass of Big Cork!

It’s been exciting to see the transformation from vine to wine, but we are even more enthused to finally share our creations with everyone. Throughout June, we will be releasing our new wines, the first being our Merlot and Syrah Rose!

We are anxious for everyone to uncork our wine, and we can’t wait to hear the reviews. To reserve your bottle, pre-order by calling 301-432-3889!

Big Cork’s Memorial Day BBQ Recipe

Chardonnay and grilled chicken make the perfect pair for a Memorial Weekend BBQ!

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Ingredients:
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 can pineapple juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
Sauce:
1 stick of butter
1/4 cups heavy cream
Remaining marinade
1/2 cup of Big Cork Chardonnay

Directions:
Marinate the chicken in garlic and herb infused olive oil and pineapple juice (best if overnight but marinate at least four hours). Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat, and lightly oil grate. Cook on the prepared grill 10 to 15 minutes per side, or until no longer pink and juices run clear.

In a saucepan, over medium heat, use the leftover marinade and combine with the Chardonnay. Bring the mixture to a boil then reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until the mixture reduces by half. Add the cream and continue to cook for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter, a couple of pieces at a time. Stir well and keep warm.

Finally, pour a glass of our Chardonnay and cheers to a great meal!

Big Cork Pours at Wine in the Woods

The Big Cork team poured wine at the Wine in the Woods event at Symphony Woods in Columbia, MD. Throughout the weekend, our staff and volunteers served hundreds that lined up to try our award winning wines including our Chardonnay, Traminette, Vidal Blanc, Late Harvest Vidal Blanc and our new Merlot wine. Thank you for those that visited us at Tent #7 and took the time to try our wines. We are amazed by the support we received, and we look forward to seeing everyone at future tasting events!

 

CBS Baltimore: Big Cork Offers Wine Suggestions for Mother’s Day

Big Cork President and CEO Randy Thompson visited the CBS Baltimore studio to suggest the best Big Cork wines to serve for Mother’s Day.

Big Cork Sponsors the Mother’s Day Centennial Luncheon in D.C.

Mother's Day Centennial LuncheonThis year marked the 100th anniversary of President Wilson’s proclamation of Mother’s Day as a National Holiday. In celebration of the anniversary, Big Cork sponsored the Mother’s Day Centennial Luncheon hosted by the the Willard InterContinental – where President Wilson himself visited and introduced the idea of the League of Nations to the American public – and The President Woodrow Wilson House. More than sixty people attended and enjoyed toasting with a glass of Big Cork wine!

Open Thursday through Monday, 11:00 am - 5:00 pm.
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