There is nothing better than a picnic under the trees on a warm October day. Fresh bread, rosemary-crusted ham and prosciutto, gourmet cheese, and a couple glasses of wine ~ and a little snooze on a blanket. This past weekend, our little historic house group ventured out to Barboursville Winery, where one can not only sample a selection of red and white wines, but tour the ruins of an old Palladian mansion. The mansion was designed by Thomas Jefferson for his friend James Barbour ~ one of only three residences (other than Monticello) designed by the former president. Jefferson's classic Palladian plan included three stories, built around an octagonal center hall. Construction was begun in 1814 and took eight years to complete. Unfortunately, however, the house was destroyed by fire on Christmas day 1884. The current winery was founded in 1976 and produces a selection of almost 20 wines! Our favorites included the Viognier, Chardonnay, and Cabernet Franc. Cheers!