Our estate vineyard is young. Nikki Riddle, owner and winemaker, planted grapes keeping the wines that she wanted to make in mind. The grape varieties she chose to plant do amazingly well in our East Tennessee. They are disease and fungus resistant and cold hardy. And yes, it can get cold here at times.
Grape Varieties in Our Estate Vineyard
Nobel and Magnolia Muscadines
Nobel (red) and Magnolia (white) muscadines are planted high on the hill to prevent late spring freezes in the South, where we must have muscadine wine plus they are great eating grapes. We put them on a high wire trellis system.
Traminette grapes produce an amazingly floral white wine. It is a French-American hybrid — a cross between another French-American hybrid and Gewürztraminer, so it grows well here but still retains a lot of the fruity floral aromas and flavors of Gewürztraminer. It is planted on a vertical shoot positioning trellis system using 10 foot poles so that there is a lot of room for vine growth.
Chambourcin produces a great red wine — either a beautiful dry or a semi-dry wine. Although its parentage is unknown, it is another French-American hybrid. We plant it on a vertical shoot positioning trellis system using 10 foot poles so that there is a lot of room for vine growth. It is growing incredibly well.
Southern Belle is our best selling wine made from the Concord grape. Concord is an American grape or Vitis labrusca and grows well as it is incredibly disease and fungus resistant . Concord has a very distinct smell and flavor that makes a great wine. Many of you probably were first introduced to the Concord grape in your grape jelly as a child in your PBJs. We grow it on a high wine trellis system.
Catawba makes a great wine for blending as it has a higher natural acidity which introduces an element of brightness to any wine when blended. It also makes a great sparkling wine. It is a very light, blush color wine. The grapes are pink. If used alone, the wines that they make taste like sweet tarts — really fruity but with a tartness that needs to be balanced with sweetness . They are grown on a high wire trellis system.