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Posted at 3:41 AM ET, 08/20/2010

Housewives Nightlife, Episode 3: Virginia wine and D.C. Fashion?

By Lavanya Ramanathan

If you don't live inside the Beltway, Episode 3 would have left you with the impression that all Washingtonians do is pop bottles of Virginia wine and engage in esoteric (slightly buzzed, perhaps?) dissections of international politics.

And if you do live in Washington? You're thinking, "Petit whaaa?"

The show appears to regard winemaking as a close second to politics in Washington, and well, if you believe that, then you were probably also surprised by Thursday night's bombshell revelation that the Salahis didn't actually spring for that party at the Park.

The Salahis can't stop plugging their connection to Northern Virginia's Oasis Winery (shuttered, report the ladies of the Reliable Source), and in this episode, Stacie Scott Turner, her hubby and the Salahis trekked to another winery, Sugarleaf Vineyards. Then, Mary Schmidt Amons raved about Oasis's reds. ... Ugh, It was like one big ad, paid for by Virginia's wine industry.

In fact, wine is a fairly new business in these parts, with many wineries having been built only in the past 20 years -- and an astonishing number in just the past three. But there is indeed a boomlet underway, thanks to plenty of farmland, a little science and, let's be real, lots of interest from cultural tourists.

What the area has really developed a knack for is unique whites (Viognier, Albariño) and one solid red, Cabernet Franc. But will you find local wines in every restaurant in town? Only if the Salahis continue to bring it everywhere with them.

The best way to get a taste is to take a Housewives-style trip to a few Virginia wineries (sans the tacky white limo, of course). Harvest season and the fall colors make the coming months a great time to go. Check out our Best Bets here, and get more background on what experts say about local wines here. If you're interested in Sugarleaf -- the African American-owned winery seen in the show -- you'll have to head farther south, to the Charlottesville area, a worthy roadtrip.

When the 'wives weren't wine-tasting, a few found themselves at Saks Fifth Avenue for a charity fashion event, a so-common-it's-kind-of-scary scenario here in Washington.

Yes, for all the knocks we have taken over the years for our collective fashion sense, Washingtonians sure do love to set up a runway -- anywhere -- and have us a New York-style walkoff. (But only if it is for charity.)

Just look at all the "couture" events coming up: Fashion's Night Out hits Georgetown on Sept. 10 (How Housewifey will it be? Just look at the host committee, which includes Lynda Erkiletian, Mary Schmidt Amons and the housewife with the best hair, Paul Wharton.) Then there's the District Sample Sale on Sept. 16 (and look who's on the "Haute Committee"! Housewife Mary Amons!) And let's not forget October, which brings Nova (that's the aspirational term for Northern Virginia) Fashion Week.

Decked out in their best dresses (probably purchased after some fashion show), the housewives closed Episode 3 by heading out on the town to a bash thrown for celeb hair guru Ted Gibson at the Dupont Hotel in Dupont Circle. Want to see it for yourself? Exclusive as it looks, it's fairly easy for any commoner to walk right in -- right into the hotel's bar, Bar Dupont, anyway. The Gurus aren't big fans; check out this ode to the stinky old bar, Biddy Mulligan's, that sleek, chic Bar Dupont replaced.

Our guess? The 'wives probably never made it to Biddy's.

-- Lavanya Ramanathan

By Lavanya Ramanathan  | August 20, 2010; 3:41 AM ET
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Who gives a sh*t?

Posted by: gerse | August 20, 2010 7:27 AM | Report abuse

This show is truly not worth watching, let alone reading about, what a waste of time and effort.

Posted by: citigreg | August 20, 2010 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Something not right with these people.All they do is gossip, drink wine, bicker and pretend they are better than others and are in a special "station" in life than each other and others. Surely they must have something constructive to do with their time.

Posted by: mac7 | August 20, 2010 9:26 AM | Report abuse

If you watched the most recent episode of Real Sports on HBO you would see that Oasis Winery is not producing ANY wine these days given that the fields are dry, the vines non-existent and the property in foreclosure/bankruptcy.

Posted by: TheOneWhoHurtsMost | August 20, 2010 9:28 AM | Report abuse

i love fashion life

Posted by: yangzhaoyong | August 20, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

"The Salahis can't stop plugging their connection to Northern Virginia's Oasis Winery" ... and the Post can't stop plugging the Salahis.

Posted by: Mike40 | August 20, 2010 10:15 AM | Report abuse

I love wine and live in the state of Virginia. I have tried numerous wines through the years and in my opionion (and that is mine alone), the wines are not just not that good. I keep trying out of a sense of loyalty, but remain unimpressed.

Posted by: gladiatorgal | August 20, 2010 10:15 AM | Report abuse

I think wine plays a much bigger part in certain DC demimondes then we earth people might suspect. For a first hand DC housewife view of whine and roses (sans the roses) check out Carol Joynt's blog. All she does is whine about how much trouble she got into because her late husband collected but didn't pay DC sales tax (and we somehow owe her for this) and consume wine. Getting wine, seeing wine, thinking about wine, stopping by from early morning to late at night, everywhere and anywhere to share someone's wine, wine with breakfast, wine mid morning, lunch wines, etc. - the only thing she never seems to do is to buy any wine.

Of course the scene at Nathan's was always a big secret - NOT! Joynt is writing a book - can we wait - about how wronged she has been. I hope that there is therein an honest assessment of the impact that drugs and alcohol can have on one's judgment and the impact of life decisions resulting from that that judgment. One could almost think of it as an inventory.

Posted by: SoCali | August 20, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Never before has suing your parents for a winery and then bankrupting it been so celebrated.

I guess they'll claim the business bankrupt, but somehow extract hundreds of thousands in salary and personal expenses, while declaring themselves celebrities.

The Salahis are grifters. Nothing more, nothing less.

Posted by: postfan1 | August 20, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Who are these heifers? These women are not from DC. They are nothing like us REAL sistah's from DC -- black or white so who gives....

The show should be called the Real Houswives who live in the Washington Metro Area or something like that. of the Beltway.. Real migrants of DC or some s*&t... don't care but they ain't from my home

Posted by: love2much SE | August 20, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

does it surprise anyone that the most boring housewives of the series are from the government town?

Posted by: djrhood | August 20, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

What a bunch of phonies and deadbeats! Why doesn't the ComPost cover real news? Oh I forgot the MSM is to busy trying to provide vover for the Administration. Pathetic!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Jimbo77 | August 20, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Why does the WP keep pushing this show as news? These are horrible people, doing horrible, shallow things. Who gives a #$@&% abut these women and their bleach blond hair?

Posted by: gdesignr1 | August 20, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Oy Vey. Do we really need to see that Sahali broad's moose knuckle? Please, WaPo, have some class - change the picture.

Posted by: password11 | August 20, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Have no interest in the show but, can tell you Oasis Wine is crap. Virginia does have some very good winemakers. Check out one of the two annual VA wine festivals. If you can dodge all the drunks and put up with some swill, you can find some real gems.

Posted by: teamohall | August 20, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

I just want to comment about the wine comments in the article. Don't diss Virginia wine. I live in Loudoun County were there are many a winery and let me tell you Virginia has many great wines. You need to go out and do tastings. I am a former New Yorker and Fairfield County, Ct. resident with pretty discriminating taste. There are many impressive wines and the Norton which is a red. It is a native grown grape to Virginia. An awesome wine depending on the winery. Restaurants don't carry alot of Virginia wines because it takes alot to produce them and probably would be too expensive for the restaurants to carry them. As far as the housewives- they are alot nicer, more well spoken and classier than the wives on the other series with the exception of LuAnn from New York- she is a class act.

Posted by: mom687 | August 20, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Make it STOP!! Enough of these deadbeats.

Posted by: dbeins | August 20, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Why is the Post, an award winning newspaper, covering the Sahlahis? They are trash and criminals! Pay your bills please. I still don't understand why Bravo is promoting these criminals. Can someone explain?

Posted by: livinginDC | August 20, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

I am going to sue you for the two minuets of my life i wasted reading this article.

Posted by: PennyWisetheClown | August 20, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

The wines around northern Virginia aren't that great. However down south of Charlotsville there are some excelent small wineries. The region is much better suited for cultivating grapes. I particularly like Cardinal Point for reds and Berry Hill Farms for desert wines.

Posted by: akmzrazor | August 20, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

(k.i. sock it dog airmen") would have a good time with these women.

Posted by: Moley2 | August 20, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, @teamohall, for coming out and saying it - Oasis isn't much to brag about. My now-husband and I went there a few years ago, when it was still operating. It was one of a handful of Virginia wineries that we didn't bring anything back from; to boot, the service was awful and the tasting room empty. It is the only winery (and we've been to a good number around Charlottesville, up through the Shenandoah, and into NoVa) that we'd vowed never to go back to.

Posted by: eaevansmd | August 20, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Uh-oh. Someone (Michaele Salahi) needs to wear looser-fitting pants. I think I saw a cameltoe just now. Way embarassing.

Posted by: forgetthis | August 20, 2010 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Hey forgetthis; the more cultured term is "moose knuckle."

Posted by: password11 | August 20, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Virginia wine is nothing new - Thomas Jefferson was trying to get the industry off the ground 200+ years ago. He didn't succeed, but some of his neighbors and contemporaries did much better.

Posted by: KathyMJ | August 20, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Get information on how to reduce your debt by filing for bankruptcy

Posted by: josephbrant | August 21, 2010 6:41 AM | Report abuse

Thanks so much W Post for the mention. Both District Sample Sale and NOVA Fashion Week are doing our best to raise the bar in fashion for everyone in the DC/MD/VA areas. Look forward to more as fashion is rising.

Posted by: NOVAFW | August 22, 2010 11:02 PM | Report abuse

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