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Dining in the vineyards at Biltmore Estates in North Carolina

Let’s take a little trip. We’re going to North Carolina for Wine Wednesday.

When you think of domestic wine producing regions, states found on the west coast of the U.S. are probably those that come to mind first.

May is North Carolina Wine Month, therefore, I thought it appropriate to kick off summer and celebrate Wine Wednesday with some east coast wine.

I got things started last night by opening a 2018 Biltmore Estates Mouvedre, as in the famous Biltmore Estates in Asheville.

Fun fact, there are more than 400 vineyards and 200 wineries in operation in North Carolina and Biltmore Winery has bragging rights for the most visitors. The first grapes were planted on this historic estate in 1971.

Gina Birch Stomping Grapes

Gina Birch Stomping Grapes at Biltmore Estates in North Carolina

I interviewed head winemaker Sharon Fenchak last year for this story about women in wine and also got to spend some time with her during a wine event a few years ago. It was my first visit to the historic estates and there was a big anniversary celebration underway where visitors were allowed to roll up their pants legs and stomp some grapes. Of course I did it. Thank goodness the color I choose for my pedicure before that trip was red.

YES, there was a foot washing station before and after. NO…these grapes were not used to make any wine.

Lunch in the vineyards

Lunch in the vineyards at Biltmore Estates

During that visit, I joined some other wine writers for a private tour of the estate and vineyards. It culminated in a fantastic lunch in the vineyard. We sampled a variety of the wines in Biltmore’s portfolio, many of which were not widely distributed. Today, you can find Biltmore Estate wines in lots of local retailers and grocery stores.

Wines to look for

They just released a new sparkling wine, made with estate-grown Chardonnay, Biltmore Estate Château Reserve Blanc de Blancs North Carolina 2019 ($65.) The bottle I had shipped did not make in time for Wine Wednesday so I’ll update this post with more info as soon as I try it.

Biltmore Estate Chateau Reserve Blanc de Blancs North Carolina

New from Biltmore Estate is the Chateau Reserve Blanc de Blancs North Carolina

Other sparkling wines in the portfolio include a Blanc de Noir, a Brut, and a Blanc de Blancs, all $35 and good buys for the money.

Biltmore Estate Sauvignon Blanc

Biltmore Estate Sauvignon Blanc

The winery has several tiers of wine, those under the “Estate” label are easier to find and affordable, mostly in the $20 and under range.

Back to that mourvedre, it’s a limited production, not an easier one to find. It has lots of dark, juicy fruits and cherry. Mourvedre is a grape used a lot in blending so it’s pretty cool to find one bottled solo.

Going to North Carolina for Wine Wednesday, Biltmore Estates is just one of many wineries in the state producing enjoyable wine. They are not as easy to find as this brand but next time you come across one, consider giving it a try.

Colorado is another area that is not top of mind when it comes to wine but I found it to be quite surprising and have more on it here.

Cheers to North Carolina Wine Month and Wine Wednesday.