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cmhmp10sd

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Hello fellow winos!


I have been introduced to wine and have come to love it within the last few years and have tasted as much wine as I possibly could. My tastes now revolve around dry reds, mainly sangioveses, super tuscans, brunellos, cabernets, and bordeaux's. Also tried some tampanrillo's from South America which were very good, not to mention all the wonderful Italian/French/American food that pairs with these wines...

I want to get into winemaking and to hopefully become a vinter, maybe one day. I have not made any wine as of yet but have been doing a decent amount of reading.

There is a local vineyard for sale here in North Jersey with some 250 acres which produces many light fruity sweet table wines like apple and cherry and few dry reds. Unrealisticly, I would like to make "serious" wines that can compete with California/Italy/France etc, which is undoubtetley an ambititious endeavor. If you want to do this, you need good grapes and a good recipe, and perhaps a good blending process.

After doing some research I have found, grapes are pretty picky when it comes to thier growing climates. If you want to grow sangiovese's for example, you need long dry summers with low humidity and cool wet winters below 1500ft. Not exactly the climate of north jersey which averages 40-50 inches of snow/year with a short growing season and high humidity.

So I am trying to figure out which grape is best to grow in north jersey that will produce the most flavored dry red you can imagine. This may be fiction, however, I figured I might as well look to the history of what grew here to see how mother nature has done it all these years.

I have found that local Indians near me have grown wine for years basically next door to me some generations ago. They grew the grape Vitis labrusca which is better know as coming from the family of the concord grape. This wine was known to have a "foxy" gamey flavor which sounds promising for dry reds AND it's already accustomed to the local climate. Now I'm excited about this grape, so now all i have to do is go the bank get a loan, buy the vineyard, replant, hire some people and start in...how hard can that be? haha

Glad to be here and to see what wine everyone else likes!

-Chris
 

smurfe

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Welcome aboard. Sounds like you have some great ambition. In regard to the vineyard for sale, what grape are they growing now that makes a dry red wine? I don't think I would bet the bank on the Concord though. The foxy flavor is more suited to a sweeter wine than a dry as normally these grapes are pretty acidic in nature and the end wine needs a bit of sweetening for balance. Think Welches Grape Juice, that is Concord grape juice. Think Mad Dog 20/20 and Thunderbird wines as well as Manichevits (sp). Not the wines a serious wine drinker would gravitate toward unless you are truly a serious wine drinker if you get my drift.

We have a member here that lives in Upstate New York that grows serious wine grapes. I don't know if his climate is that much different than yours but he may be able to shed some light on what may be the best route for you to move toward. Hopefully he will see this post and give you some insight. Once again, welcome aboard and I hope we can help you move in the direction you want in the future.
 

Tom

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cmhmp10sd,
Welcome from another "wineo" from New Jersey. So. Jersey here. Not knowing exactly where in NJ you are from I would contact other Jersey wineries as to what they grow. Remember what they grow and what they make can be 2 different wines.
 

St Allie

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welcome to the forum,

sounds like a promising venture.

Allie
 

Wade E

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Welcome to this site. You are very right that the grapes are very particular to their terroir. Im betting you could probably grow some decent white grapes and a few reds like maybe Cab franc and Frontenac as these are Cold hardy varieties. We have a guy on here by the name of grapeman who hopefully will join in here and give you a better idea of what will gow there but you have lots pf work to do to learn the wine making process first. I would start with some wine kits and since yo think you have a pallette for good wines i advise you to buy the higher end grape skin kits which cost more money and are a little bit more work then just juice but make a hude difference in final result, You could also make an all juice kit like a Mosti Mondiale as thats a little easier with out the skins and you wont sacrifice much at all. Here's a good place to look at whats available and h bacs up everything 100%.
http://finevinewines.com/
 

grapeman

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Welcome Chris,
I'm glad you found your way here. It is super that you are seeing yourself doing great things with wine. Remember all winemakers and vineyardists want to make the best wine they can. Learn what you can about the wines the previous owners make at that vineyard- besides the apple and cherry.

What you are proposing would take some serious capital to make a serious run at sucess. Remember the best way to make a small fortune is to begin with a large one. Replanting the vines, if you find some that do well there takes about 10,000 dollars per acre to get them to the point of bearing a full crop- which will be four to five years. You can get a limited crop before then, but it still loses money the first year or two.

Personally, I would go Wade's direction and begin making a bit ow wine from kits. Then you can evolve to some fresh juice, then to real grapes and then maybe you can transition into growing your own and making wine from them. Think seriously about these things, talk to some of the growers and wineries in the area, and then decide if you truly are ready to get into this. It is a lifestyle comittment you need to be dedicated to unless you hire a vineyard AND winery manager/s. If you want to get to it, there are some really great white grapes to grow and there are a few reds coming onto the scenes that can make some very good wine.

I don't want to discourage you, but then I don't want to get you in over your head at this point through anything I might tell you- that could be very costly to you.
 

cmhmp10sd

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Wow thanks for all the replys, I'm feeling the love here everyone!
 

cmhmp10sd

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Answering everyone, I contacted the owners of the vineyard and asked then what kind of grapes they grow. Here is the link, I can't link it directly cause I don't have 5 posts and have to trick the silly forum program.

http://
foursisterswineryDOTcom

Thier drys are only labeled as "red table wine" which is not very descriptive and is probably a blend. I'm in hackettstown nj, warren county.

Gonna start with a "serious" kit and see how it goes, hopefully it we be amazing. THink I answered everyone!!
 

smurfe

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I just looked at that website. It looks like they produce a lot more than just fruit wines there. Have you visited the place yet? Looks like their vineyard grows a good variety of white and red grapes. If they produce everything listed every year, I am impressed with their variety.
 

Wade E

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I too have checked it out, did you notice that there is a pop down list for thier wines, there is a good variety there. They probably do grow some of their own reds but probably do also blend in some reds from other places as most do in the tri state area cause we just cant grow a goo Merlot around here.
 

cmhmp10sd

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The only Red wines I've seen for sale are the Papas Red, Holiday Seasoned, and Beaver Creek. Thier most popular are the fruits wines. I didn't even see that they use the Baco Noir.
 
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cmhmp10sd

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Actually I recall thier beaver creek red being sold out alot. That one is pretty much grape juice. Been reading about baco noir...


"Abandoned by the French, you seem
to have found a home in some chilly
vineyards. Tannic muscle is your
strength. A lumberjack of vines, you
are woodsy and full framed. Your
hardworking nature is praiseworthy
read more...and your ability to withstand the cold
is a godsend for producers in Canada
and in northern U.S. states. "

Yeah that sounds pretty amazing, gonna grab a bottle of that papa red. Sounds like good wine without the ego of the french...haha works for me.
 

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