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Mountain Escapes for Cigar Enthusiasts

Posted: November 3, 2010

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In fact, even now the lodge itself remains somewhat of a secret. Although Primland's outdoor activities have been available since the 1990s, the building is only two years old.

A spectacular architectural feat of local recycled lumber, Italian tile and state-of-the-art green technologies, it features an 8,100 square-foot spa that honors the healing traditions of Native Americans. Best of all, the lodge is also home to a contemporary restaurant called Elements where we had dined the night before our sporting clays outing.

Although Elements provides sweeping vistas of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the menu and wine selections clearly reflect time well spent in Napa and Sonoma by Karl Kazaks, Primland's director of dining and beverage.

The centerpiece of Elements is a horizontal gas fireplace encased in glass. It casts a romantic ambience that infuses the dining experience. That evening, I started with the lobster bisque while my wife ordered an appetizer of diver scallop with butter pecan ice cream, fennel, white chocolate and coffee.

She moved on to the sous-vide lobster accompanied by mushroom capelletti, and I had the Strube Ranch Wagyu Beef calotte, and it was far away the best beef I had ever tasted. Our meal was accompanied by a 2007 Cakebread Merlot. By the time dessert arrived, night had settled on the Blue Ridge Mountains and it was clearly time for a cigar.

We took a leisurely stroll along the torch-lit trail to the Tobacco Barn, a special place reserved for cigar smokers. Tobacco was a cash crop for most local families in this area who raised it in small plots. The region is dotted with tobacco barns used to cure the leaf.

Primland had moved a sterling example onto the property. The rough-hewn logs are packed with mortar. Inside there was a country stone fireplace, big screen TV, comfortable furniture and a couple of high-top tables. The temperature was set to near-humidor conditions.

The Tobacco Barn cigar menu includes cigars from Punch, Montecristo, Romeo y Julieta and Padrón. Your smoke can be accompanied by a variety of single malts, Cognacs and Ports. The Tobacco Barn was quite cozy, but you may just want to wander outside with cigar and spirit to enjoy the starry night.

2000 Busted Rock Road
Meadows of Dan, Virginia 24120

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