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Test Vineyard Site

at RiverWalk Resort

When we started the winery in 2010, we originally named it (legally) the “Vineyard at Seven Birches, LLC” because we always knew we wanted to have our own New Hampshire-grown grapevines.  It has taken us 9 whole years, but we are excited to announce that our test vineyard site in the backyard of the RiverWalk Resort at Loon Mountain is now planted.

It took nearly a year of planning, soil testing, educating, treating the soil, building a trellis, and finally planting the vines, to get to where we are today.  But, it was all worth it.  The vines are growing rapidly, and look amazing (inside their grow-tubes).  The issue with growing grapes in northern climates is the short growing season and long cold winters.  It’s certainly not because it is impossible to grow grapevines; its just imperative that the vines you grow are the right ones for the site.

We decided to plant all Ag. Zone 3, Cold Hardy, Minnesota Hybrids for our first test.  We are somewhere in zone 4a/b here in Lincoln, NH, but a zone 3 vine, cold-hardy to -35 degrees Fahrenheit would probably have the best chance of survival here.  The grapevines that we planted are from

  • Brianna – a relatively easy to grow variety with good disease resistance and winter hardiness. Produces light, semi-sweet table wines with grapefruit, tropical, and floral characteristics, with a pronounced pineapple nose and flavor when fully ripe.
  • LaCrescent – one of the more popular Northern varieties and includes Muscat Hamburg in its geneology. La Crescent has high acidity and is used to produce off-dry to sweet wines, typically with apricot, peach, and citrus characteristics, and is also used for dessert and late harvest wines.
  • Marquette – rapidly becoming the most popular northern red grape variety. Typically maturing with high sugar content and moderate acidity, Marquette can produce complex wines with attractive ruby color and pronounced tannins, often with notes of cherry, berry, black pepper, and spice.
  • Sabrevois – a sister variety of St. Croix with better winter hardiness. Sugar content is typically low and wines can have pleasant fruitiness lacking in body and tannins, so there is potential for blending with other complimentary red hybrids.

We will not have grapes on these vines for 2 more years, if they survive the winter.  But, it will surely be fun to watch them grow.  Check Out Vine Adoption.

Vineyard Planting Pics

from site prep to planting

During our regular Wednesday and Saturday tours, we will be going out into the vineyards for our guests to see and learn about these vines, in addition to the time spent in the winery.  We will also keep a log/chronicle of the vineyard progress here on our blog.

Find out how you can Adopt-A-Vine for your family!

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