Virginia’s First Lady Plants First-Ever Grapevines in the Executive Mansion Garden

First Lady Maureen McDonnell with help

In commemoration of Virginia Wine Week-Love by the Glass, as well as Acte 12 of Jamestown Requiring Settlers to Plant and Tend Grapevines, First Lady Maureen McDonnell planted 10 Chambourcin grapevines in the garden of the Executive Mansion in late March.  She was assisted by Jason Tesauro, Chief Sommelier and National Sales Director and Luca Paschina, General Manager and Winemaker at Barboursville Vineyards; Lucie Morton, nationally renowned viticulturist and vineyard consultant; Mansion Chef Todd Schneider; and Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Todd Haymore. (Pictured left to right with First Lady.)

The vines are being planted with the intent that they will be flourishing for the Executive Mansion’s two hundred anniversary in 2013. Completed in 1813, the Virginia Governor’s Mansion is the oldest continually occupied residence in the United States. It is unique beyond its vast history as no other historic house belongs to the people of Virginia; no other has been home to a procession of fifty-four governors and their families; and no other serves as both residence of the Commonwealth’s chief executive and a place of official business. The grapevine planting is among a number of special activities that will commemorate its rich history.

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