The springtime weather has certainly awakened the vines from the long winter, but the temperatures have also stirred activity at our local wineries. Here’s the latest news and developments from four Delmarva wineries.
Lower Shore winery Great Shoals Winery has teamed with family farm T.S. Smith & Sons to produce “Blazing Star Sparkling Peach,” a hard cider made from peaches and apples. Great Shoals owner Matt Cimino reports that the cider is a 50/50 blend of ginger gold apples and peaches grown at the Smith’s farm in Bridgeville, Delaware. The apples give crispness to the blend while the peaches offer sweetness and deep peach flavor. Cimino and Charlie Smith created “Black Twig Hard Apple” cider last year and hope to repeat the success of that cider with their new peach/apple blend. Blazing Star Sparkling Peach sports 8% alcohol and can be purchased at the Wine Rack in Fruitland, Md., Cheers in Salisbury, Md., Bridgeville Discount Liquors and at Liquor Land in Seaford, Del.
Fenwick Wine Cellars in West Fenwick Island, Delaware announces their new “Grab-N-Go Bags,” the winery’s wine packaged in a flexible, unbreakable bag. Wine bags make packing for picnics or boating easy and when empty, leave a smaller environmental footprint than a traditional glass bottle. The winery’s Katie Connolly says that Fredonia is the only varietal offered now in this packaging (750 ml size), but the most popular varietals will come along later in 1.5 liter bags. This adds new meaning to the concept of taking a “bag lunch” to work! The winery’s summer hours are Sunday through Thursday from noon until 6:00; Fridays from noon until 7:00; and Sundays from 11 a.m. through 7 p.m.
Cold temperatures on April 22 caused some concern at Layton’s Chance Vineyard & Winery, but the late-in-season cold temperatures did minimal damage to the vines. The recent rains have posed a challenge to local farmers, but the winery is set to go for a long growing season. The vine’s buds and shoots are coming along and the regular care schedule is underway at the Dorchester County winery. With the vines safely along, Layton’s Chance is preparing for another birthday bash to celebrate another year of operations. See DelmarvaWine.com’s “Wine Events” page for more information about this Memorial Day weekend event.
Wicomico County’s Bordeleau Winery wrestled with the same challenges presented by cold springtime temperatures. The damage caused by a late-season frost can lead to production losses during the harvest. Benefitting from last year’s harvest, Bordeleau is bottling a new “Barrel Fermented Chardonnay.” The winery will also roll out its first bottling of Malbec, a deep red varietal often recognized as Argentina’s signature grape. Bordelau used Malbec in blending some of its past wines, but this is the first use of Malbec for a single-varietal bottling. Petit Verdot and Chambourcin are also part of the winery’s new products coming out this year.
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