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Lake Erie: From Vine to Wine
During the Ice Age, Canada’s soil was torn from its land by glaciers and deposited in the northern regions of the United States, leaving behind deep loamy soil, the Great Lakes, and fertile ridges. The Concord grape, native to America, found this land to be its Eden, and the Lake Erie Wine Country bloomed in the warm breezes off the water in the spring and summer seasons. It rapidly became the most abundant grape-growing region east of the Rocky Mountains. Thomas Welch took interest, and his grape juice company reached the shores of Erie to grow Concord grapes for the famous business.
Hosting twenty-three wineries, Lake Erie’s Wine Country is an award-winning area known for its sweet and semi-sweet wines, as well as its vinifera, ice wines, fruit wines, brandies, sherries, and ports. Many of the vineyards also grow orchards of peaches, apples, figs and a variety of other fruits that find the soil to their liking. Most of these vineyards are between $1 and $5 per tasting, and some offer a return fee if you end up purchasing a bottle.
Arundel Cellars & Brewing Co. is one notable vineyard in this region and its namesake stems from an English castle noticed in World War I by Frank Shultz. Their sandy soil provides the exceptional drainage needed for vines and contributes to the unforgettable flavor. The vineyard’s attractive crimson barn offers a spacious venue for wine tasting and a light meal. Arundel also hosts an outdoor concert from their Summer Concert Series every Friday night in their meadow among their vineyards. There is no charge for the concert, and beverages and food are available for purchase at the vineyard. Bring your lawn chair and relax with live music in the serene setting of Arundel. Visit the website for more information, menu, musical lineup, and a list of their available wines.
Pick your driver (maybe whoever draws the shortest straw), don’t wear white, and plan your trip to Lake Erie Wine Country today!
Brandon Sherbo, Guest Blogger