Muscadine wine? Is that like the moonshine of wine? This grape may surprise you. With tons of antioxidants and cancer-fighting radicals, muscadine wine is heart healthy. Keep reading to learn more about muscadine wine.
Disclosure: My trip to Johnston County was provided courtesy of the Johnston County Visitors Bureau before the #OCNC2017 #NATJA conference. All opinions are 100% mine.
You’d think with 4,653 bonded wineries in California there would be no need to travel to drink wine. So when I had a chance to try muscadine wine in Johnston County, North Carolina, who was I to say no?
Made from American grapes, muscadine wine is a sweet wine, almost like a dessert wine. And while the fruit is already sweet many of the winemakers add sugar. Muscadine wines pairs with beef, lamb, and seafood.
Fun tip: Resistant to many diseases, some California vineyards use Muscadine root for grafting stock.
Health Benefits of Muscadine Wine
Muscadine grapes favor warm, humid climates in the Southeastern US like Johnston County, North Carolina. Because the grapes range in color from green to dark purple (almost black), they’re used for making red and white wine.
If unchecked, vines can grow to over 100 feet a year, producing up to 90 lbs of grapes. The grapes, large, round, almost like golf balls, grow in small, loose clusters.
Muscadine wine, rich in polyphenols, resveratrol, and ellagic acid is a powerful antioxidant.
Studies have proven that:
- It’s good for your heart
- Lowers cholesterol
- Kills cancer cells
- Improves learning in Alzheimer’s patients
Muscadine Wineries in Johnston County
Only thirty minutes from Raleigh there are two muscadine wineries in Johnston County, North Carolina.
Established in 1971, Hinnant Vineyards is the largest muscadine vineyard in North Carolina. But it wasn’t until 2003, that they sold their first bottle of muscadine wine.
Their wines have won many awards including:
- 2011 Platinum Medal San Diego International Wine Competition
- 2011 Gold Medal San Francisco International Wine Competition
- 2014 Double Gold Medal NC State Fair Wine Competition
- 2014 Best in Show, NC State Fair
Daily wine tasting including a souvenir glass, is available for $5 per person.
Hinnant also makes a non-alcoholic grape juice.
Interested in trying your hand at picking muscadine grapes? Visit Hinnant Family Vineyards in September during harvest season.
Hinnant Family Vineyards
826 Pine Level Micro Road, Pine Level, NC
Monday through Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm
Sunday from 1 pm to 5 pm
Gregory Vineyards produced their first muscadine wine in 2011. This one stop shop (wedding venue, winery, restaurant, and distillery) has won many awards including:
- 2013 Gold Medal NC State Fair Wine Competition
- 2013 Double Silver Medal NC State Fair Wine Competition
The family friendly vineyard offers wine tasting, tours and a trolley ride from $17 per person.
Make like Lucy and join the fun of pigeage aka grape-stomping at Gregory Vineyards from 1 pm to 6 pm on Oct 1, 2017.
274 Bowling Spring Dr, Angier, NC
Wednesday through Saturday from 12 pm to 9 pm
Note: Coupons only accepted from 12 pm to 4 pm.
While I’m not normally a fan of sweet wine, muscadine wine was a pleasant surprise. Sweet enough to satisfy a picky palette but without being cloyingly sweet. And with all the health benefits of the muscadine grape, what’s not to like?
What’s your favorite muscadine wine?
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Featured image courtesy of Johnston County Visitors Bureau.
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