[Full Disclosure – the author worked for Prince Michel Vineyards from 1999-2002]
Energy, enthusiasm and integrity abound at Prince Michel Vineyards. As one of the largest wineries in the state, Prince Michel continues to innovate to provide patrons with unique experiences and outstanding wines.
Located directly on U.S. 29 about thirty minutes North of Charlottesville, Prince Michel Vineyards is a leader in the Virginia wine industry. Established in 1983 by Jean and Sylvaine LeDucq, Prince Michel Vineyards was born in the modern renaissance of Virginia wine.
After selling fruit to the winery for several years, Kristin Holtzman acquired the business in 2005. A successful businessperson in her own right, Holtzman brought a new vibrancy to the proud, established, estate winery. Her infectious energy and optimism propelled several new initiatives.
A designer by background, Holtzman reinvigorated the dining at Prince Michel by opening the restaurant not just for weddings and corporate functions but to everyone with monthly events including winemaker dinners, first Sunday of the month brunches, wine and cheese pairings and even a “50’s Sock Hop”.
Holtzman’s fresh and innovative approach to Prince Michel challenged not only its business model but the basic philosophy of how to experience wine. Her attitude that wine is to be enjoyed resounded throughout all aspects of Prince Michel and continues to be a benchmark for all they do.
Working with PMV’s long-time winemaker Brad Hansen, Holzman increased and diversified their growing partners.
In 2002, Winemaker Hansen was instrumental in developing a plan that focused on fostering relationships with many of Virginia’s premier family vineyards. His vision for Prince Michel has expanded their line of wines to include unique varietals and a boutique style series called Vineyard Designates. These wines showcase exceptional Virginia vineyards and emphasize the crucial relationship between excellent winemaking craftsmanship and vineyard microclimates.
Building on that relationship, Hansen travels the Old Dominion throughout the growing season working with the vineyard partners to ensure the quality and integrity of the fruit is up to Prince Michel’s exacting standards.
Hansen emphasizes the consistent quality of Prince Michel wines and credits this success to excellent ownership and the best grapes we can either grow or obtain from superior sources. “I have the opportunity to hand craft wines from the best grapes Virginia has to offer. I also have at my disposal the highest quality barrels available from around the world and the most technically advanced machinery in the industry.”
In addition to creating award winning wines, Prince Michel’s tasting room won the 2012 VaWineLover.com Visitor’s Choice contest.
Prince Michel is open seven days a week from 10 am to 6 pm, excluding major holidays.