Travel Guide: 24 Hours in Loudoun County

 

Another summer weekend, another getaway. Y’all, I can’t get enough of these quick trips out into Virginia. Within an hour, it feels like you’re a world away from Washington, DC. So, when it was 80 degrees and sunny a few weekends ago, I was delighted to have the chance to head out to Loudoun County on Sunday for a quick overnight trip.

24 HOURS IN LOUDOUN COUNTY

This travel guide will be formatted a bit different than the guides I typically put together. Usually, I give break it out into sections about where to eat, where to drinks, etc. However, with this guide, I wanted to walk you through exactly what I did during a 24 hour getaway in Loudoun County. My hope is that this will help my readers see just how much you can pack into a quick trip!

 

 

STOP FOR LUNCH IN DOWNTOWN LEESBURG

We left Washington, DC around 9 AM with the intention of grabbing an early brunch in Middleburg before hitting the wineries. Well, I accidentally put in a restaurant that’s actually in downtown Leesburg about 20 minutes away and didn’t realize until we got into town that I had led us down the wrong path. However, being that it was a beautiful day, we decided to go ahead and see what downtown Leesburg had to offer. We ended up brunching on the rooftop at Cocina on Market since it was open at 10 AM. With a plate full of queso fundido with chorizo, my day got off to an excellent start.

WINE TASTING AT STONE TOWER WINERY

In keeping with the unplanned theme that started off our day, we decided to check out Stone Tower Winery when we saw the sign on our way from Leesburg to Middleburg. You will not find views at many of the northern Virginia vineyards that can rival those at Stone Tower and I could immediately see why this has become a favorite of DC locals in recent years. The wines were excellent, the interior is spacious and comfortable, and you can guarantee I’ll visit Stone Tower again.

 

 

PICNIC IN THE GRASS AT QUATTRO GOOMBAS BREWERY

Next up, we headed to Quattro Goombas, a brewery and winery known for their wine slushies. We decided to bypass the wine slushies – it was a Sunday, after all – and instead opted to share a flight from their brewery. I was definitely feeling their Resistance is Fruitile, a mango and passionfruit wheat ale, as well as Wingardium Lovagose. Had we not already brunched, this would have ben a wonderful spot to bring a picnic, a blanket, perhaps some lawn games, and just parked ourselves under one of the trees for a few hours.

 

 

SAMPLE WINES UNDER THE ARBOR AT CHRYSALIS VINEYARDS

Chrysalis Vineyards was one of the first wineries I ever visited in Loudoun County wine country, but it underwent a massive renovation in the past several years. There are now outdoor tasting stations, gorgeous areas to hang out beneath a vine covered arbor, and a massive tasting room. We did a tasting, grabbed a glass of the house red, and ended up going home with a few bottles. I just couldn’t pass up the Petit Manseng – an ice wine, or dessert wine.

 

STOP FOR ICE CREAM IN DOWNTOWN MIDDLEBURG

All of this wine and beer tasting and an incredibly sunny day put me in the mood for something refreshing, so we made our way to downtown Middleburg and stopped in Scruffy’s Ice Cream Parlor, a classic spot located right on Washington Street. I opted for the mint chocolate chip, of course, and then walked around town for a few minutes window shopping with cone in hand. Is there anyway better way to spend a summer afternoon?

 

 

CHECK IN TO THE BRIAR PATCH BED AND BREAKFAST Inn

After a busy first half of the day spent wine tasting and exploring Leesburg and Middleburg, we checked into our relaxing retreat at the Briar Patch Bed and Breakfast Inn. Located just 5 minutes up the road from downtown Middleburg, this historic farm, build in 1805, is nestled at the foot of Bull Run Mountain. It’s in the perfect location for exploring local Loudoun County wineries, taking in the history of the region, or spending a weekend in horse country. Briar Patch even offers cooking classes on particular weekends.

Also, the bed and breakfast is pet friendly, which I know is an important fact to note for many of you!

 

SPEND THE LATE AFTERNOON RELAXING IN THE COUNTRY

Once we checked in to Briar Patch Bed and Breakfast Inn, we decided to spend the afternoon relaxing by their pool. The sunny, gorgeous afternoon was perfect for laying out and taking in those last remnants of golden hour. Surrounded by lush greenery of the property and the sound of horses neighing just over the fence, I was left thinking, “Can we do this every weekend?” If I’d been able to tear myself away from reading magazines by the pool and kicking back in the hot tub, I would have spent some time reading on the front porch rocking chairs that overlook the rolling green hills. But, I couldn’t, so I’ll save that for next time.

 

 

HEAD DOWNTOWN FOR DINNER

As the sun began to go down, we decided it might be a good time to head downtown for dinner. I read great things about several restaurants in town, and decided to give Red Bar Sushi a try – I remembered from our last trip to Middleburg that there seemed to be a bit of a local crowd there, and I always take that as a good sign. Plus, sushi was a welcome change from the farm to table fare that I usually opt for when I head out to the Virginia countryside.

Just a heads up that if you are visiting Middleburg, the town shuts down early, so don’t expect to do a late dinner. When we were sitting down at 7:45 PM, the bustling restaurant was starting to wind down.

With our stomachs full, we headed back to Briar Patch Bed and Breakfast Inn to turn in early for the evening. I even treated myself to something I never do at home – I read in bed! There’s rarely a night that I sit down in bed at an hour that seems realistic to stay up in bed, but when you’re on Loudoun County time, that’s what there is to do past 9 PM – and I have zero complaints.

 

 

WAKE UP TO A HOMEMADE BREAKFAST

I woke up early Monday morning in our comfortable and historic room at Briar Patch Bed and Breakfast Inn, took a quick shower, and wandered into the kitchen to sit down to a homemade breakfast. With fruit, eggs, pastries, and a casserole, I was happy to have a delicious start to my week. It made my early wakeup call just a bit more bearable.

Caffeinated and fed, I packed up my overnight bag, and hit the road back to DC, leaving another wonderful weekend in Loudoun County behind and making it back in time to start the workday and get back to reality.

 

 

Thank you to Briar Patch Bed and Breakfast for hosting me! As always, all opinions are my own, and I’m so grateful to the companies, brands, and readers that make www.heatherbien.com possible!

1 Comment

  1. katie
    July 28, 2018 / 9:51 pm

    I love Stone Tower winery so much! I always just go out to Loudoun for the day — really need to do a staycation there soon!

    ​xx katie // a touch of teal

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