Some of the grapes we grow:
Gewurztraminer is an aromatic wine grape variety that performs best in cooler climates. It is sometimes referred to colloquially as Gewurz, and in French it is written Gewurztraminer (without the umlaut). Gewurztraminer is a variety with a pink to red skin color, which makes it a "white wine grape" as opposed to the blue to black-skinned varieties commonly referred to as "red wine grapes". The variety has high natural sugar and the wines are white and usually off-dry, with a flamboyant bouquet of lychees. Indeed, Gewurztraminer and lychees share the same aroma compounds. Dry Gewurztraminers may also have aromas of roses, passion fruit and floral notes. It is not uncommon to notice some spritz (fine bubbles on the inside of the glass).
Its aromatic flavors make Gewurztraminer one of the few wines that is suitable for drinking with Asian cuisine. It goes well with Munster cheese, and fleshy, fatty (oily) wild game. Smoked salmon is a particularly good match.
Riesling is a white grape variety, which originated in the Rhine region of Germany. Riesling is an aromatic grape variety displaying flowery, almost perfumed, aromas as well as high acidity. It is used to make dry, semi-sweet, sweet and sparkling white wines. Riesling wines are usually varietally pure and are seldom oaked. As of 2004, Riesling was estimated to be the world's 20th most grown (with an increasing trend), but in terms of importance for quality wines, it is usually included in the "top three" white wine varieties together with Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. Riesling is a variety, which is highly "terroir-expressive", meaning that the character of Riesling wines is clearly influenced by the wine's place of origin.
Riesling is a versatile wine for pairing with food, because of its balance of sugar and acidity. It can be paired with white fish or pork, and is one of the few wines that can stand up to the stronger flavors and spices of Thai and Chinese cuisine. A Riesling's typical aromas are of flowers, tropical fruits, and mineral stone (such as slate or quartz), although, with time, the wine acquires a petrol note as mentioned above.
Riesling is almost never fermented or aged in new oak (although large old oak barrels are often used to store and stabilize Riesling based wines in Germany and Alsace). This means that Riesling tends to be lighter weight and therefore suitable to a wider range of foods. The sharp acidity/sweetness in Rieslings can serve as a good balance to foods that have a high salt content. In Germany, cabbage is sometimes cooked with riesling to reduce the vegetable's smell. Dry Riesling is generally served at a cool 11 ÃÂÃÂ°C (52ÃÂÃÂ°F) and Sweeter Rieslings are often served warmer.
Chardonnay is a green-skinned grape variety used to make white wine. It is originated from the Burgundy wine region of eastern France but is now grown wherever wine is produced, from England to New Zealand. For new and developing wine regions, growing Chardonnay is seen as a "rite of passage" and an easy segue into the international wine market. The Chardonnay grape itself is very neutral, with many of the flavors commonly associated with the grape being derived from such influences as terroir and oak. It is vinified in many different styles, from the lean, crisply mineral wines of Chablis, France to New World wines with tropical fruit flavors and lots of oak.
Due to the wide range of styles, Chardonnay has the potential to be paired with a diverse spectrum of food types. It is most commonly paired with roast chicken and other white meats such as turkey. Heavily oak influenced Chardonnays do not pair well with more delicate fish and seafood dish. Instead, those wines tend to go better with smoked fish, spicy Southeast Asian cuisine, garlic and guacamole dips. The regional influences of Chardonnay can help it pair with different food styles. Older, mellower Chardonnays are often paired with more "earthy" dishes like mushroom soup and aged cheese.
We also have recently planted Noiret - A deep red color with a peppery taste created by Cornell University, and for blending a Cab Franc and a Merlot you'ÃÂÃÂll want to look for our first Red in 2012.
We Also grow Table grapes which are intended for consumption while they are fresh, as opposed to grapes grown for wine production, juice production, or for drying into raisins. Table varieties usually have lower sugar content than wine grapes and are more flavorful when eaten. Their flavors, however, do not survive fermentation and their low sugar content means that any wine produced from them is weak, bland-tasting and easy to deteriorate. Depending on the market for wine and table grapes, low quality wine may contain some grapes that could also be sold as table grapes, particularly Thompson Seedless. Other grapes sold as table grapes are Flame, Sultana, Muscat, Almeria and Concord grape.
The flavor of cider varies. Ciders can be classified from dry to sweet. Their appearance ranges from cloudy with sediment to completely clear, and their color ranges from light yellow through orange to brown. The variations in clarity and color are mostly due to filtering between pressing and fermentation. Some apple varieties will produce a clear cider without any filtration. Both sparkling and still ciders are made; the sparkling variety is the more common.
Modern, mass-produced ciders closely resemble sparkling wine in appearance. More traditional brands tend to be darker and cloudier. They are often stronger than the mass-produced varieties and taste more strongly of apples. Almost colorless "white cider" is produced on a large scale. Apples grown for consumption are suitable for cider making, though some regional cider-makers prefer to use a mix of eating and cider apples (as in Kent, England), or exclusively cider apples (as in the West Country, England). There are many hundreds of varieties of cultivars developed specifically for cider making.
Once the apples are gathered from trees in orchards they are scratted (ground down) into what is called pomace or pommage. Historically this was done using pressing stones with circular troughs, or by a cider mill. Cider mills were traditionally driven by hand, water mill, or horse-power. In modern times they are likely to be powered by electricity. The pulp is then transferred to the cider press and built up in layers known as cheeses into a block.
Traditionally the method for squeezing the juice from the cheese involves placing sweet straw or haircloths between the layers of pomace. This will alternate with slatted ash-wood racks, until there is a pile of ten or twelve layers. It is important to minimize the time that the pomace is exposed to air in order to keep oxidation to a minimum.
The set is then subjected to increasing degrees of pressure, until all the 'must' or juice is squeezed from the pomace. This juice, after being strained in a coarse hair-sieve, is then put into either open vats or closed casks. The pressed pulp is given to farm animals as winter feed, composted or discarded, or used to make liqueurs
Fermentation is carried out at a temperature of 416 ÃÂÃÂ°C (40ÃÂÃÂ60 ÃÂÃÂ°F). This is low for most kinds of fermentation, but is beneficial for cider as it leads to slower fermentation with less loss of delicate aromas.
Shortly before the fermentation consumes all the sugar, the liquor is racked (siphoned) into new vats. This leaves dead yeast cells and other undesirable material at the bottom of the old vat. At this point it becomes important to exclude airborne acetic bacteria, so vats are filled completely to exclude air. The fermenting of the remaining available sugar generates a small amount of carbon dioxide that forms a protective layer, reducing air contact. This final fermentation creates a small amount of carbonation. Extra sugar may be added specifically for this purpose. Racking is sometimes repeated if the liquor remains too cloudy.
The cider is ready to drink after a three-month fermentation period, though more often it is matured in the vats for up to two or three years.
We make a few different flavors of cider; cherry pie, apple crisp, wild berry, peach and our most popular, chocolate cherry!
Info coming soon.