Hardware Hills wouldn't be possible without the hard work and dedication of it's original owners, George and Leslie Cushnie. When George and Leslie moved to Scottsville, this property was little more than a muddy tree farm. Years of devotion lead to the planting of the now over 4 acres of vines along the rolling hills by the Hardware River. Aptly named Thistle Gate after their Scottish heritage, the Cushnie's vineyard evolved into a full scale winery as George became the primary winemaker and business manager. Leslie, with her strong forestry background, lovingly tended the vines year around, including some frozen days of pruning in the snows of January!
Their hard work and dedication paid off as they produced not only award winning wines, but also built a welcoming tasting room that became the first in Fluvanna County, VA. George also pushed diligently to have Thistle Gate added to the renown Monticello Wine Trail, of which we continue to proudly be an ongoing member. After over a decade of tireless labor-of-love, Leslie and George agreed it was time to retire and begin enjoying their growing family of grandchildren located outside of Virginia.
Andrea and Rob became the new owners in early July 2021. Learning from scratch, they have taken on the wine-making world, vineyard management, tasting room hospitality, and overall property maintenance with the same eager excitement carried by Leslie and George before them.
In addition to the love of this new adventure, Andrea and Rob love to fish, camp, and travel. Empty nesters, they have a combined family of four children living in New York, Texas, Indiana, and Tennessee. Their current children living at home include the canine four-legged variety -- their older rescue dog, Kali, and the crazy COVID puppy, Sammie. Both dogs are thriving and loving farm life.