Have you ever come across muscadine wine? If you have not, you are not alone. Many consumers and professionals are unaccustomed to it or look down on this type of wine. While it might not be the most renowned wine on the market, Muscadine wine is a must-try for all wine lovers. You are wondering why? Because it's the only wine on the market prepared with native American grapes. Here is an exclusive look at muscadine wine and everything you need to know about it.
So, What Is Muscadine Wine?
According to NPR.org, muscadine wine is prepared from muscadine grapes, a thick-skinned, though grape native to North America. Since the sixteenth century, muscadine grapes have been made into port-style and dry wines. They grow across the southeastern United States and are very easy to grow. Muscadine wines are sweet as winemakers often add sugar while making the wine because of their naturally low sugar content. However, dry versions of muscadine wines also exist. Muscadine grapes are most productive in humid, warm climates. These grapes range from copper/bronze to black, although most will stay green throughout the ripening period. You can eat the berries directly, although their thick skins make them hard to chew. Generally, you need to puncture the grape's skin to be able to such out the juice and flesh. However, the thick skins make the grapes super rich in antioxidants and polyphenols. Because of their range of colors, Muscadine grapes are used to produce both red and white wines. Red wines feature flavors of ripe red fruit, while white wines offer flavors of white flowers and bananas.
Why Do Some People Look Down on Muscadine Wine?
One of the reasons why muscadine wine is looked down on is because muscadine grapes are very cheap. Winemakers can buy around 2,200 pounds of muscadine grapes for $300. Such an amount of Pinot Noir grapes can go for more than $2000. Additionally, muscadine wines are reputable for being excessively sweet. This misconception originates long back from the traditional winemaking techniques. European winemakers often added a lot of sugar to the wine to make the muscadine grapes taste similar to the varieties they used. Winemakers can find it tricky to work with muscadine grapes as it's hard to produce a well-balanced wine that is not too sweet.
Benefits Of Using Muscadine Grapes
Winemaking with muscadine grapes has various benefits. These grapes are cheaper to buy, so you can sell the wines at an incredible value. The grapes can also grow big to the size of a golf ball so that winemakers can make more wine from them. Muscatine grapes are also remarkably resilient. They have thick and hard skin, making it challenging for diseases and rot to penetrate. Other than being tough and cheap, muscadine grapes have been found to have some amazing health benefits. According to Cypressbendvineyards, muscadine grapes are rich in ellagic acid, polyphenols, and resveratrol. These components have been revealed to help treat conditions such as liver problems and obesity. According to some studies, muscadines can even help suppress the growth of cancer cells. According to Healthline.Com, compared to other wines, muscadine wines have the highest polyphenols levels that help support cardiovascular health and other benefits such as enhanced brain health and digestion. The best thing about using muscadine grapes is that they have their roots in America. They are the only indigenous wine grapes in America, with their cultivation dating long back to Florida during the 16th century. For American wine lovers, you will love that muscadine wines are locally made.
What Does Muscadine Wine Taste Like?
Muscadine grapes are often red. However, muscadine wines feature a variety of different styles and types. The wines can be red, roses, or white. Muscadine wines can also be used in preparing sweet dessert-style wines. White, red, and rose muscadine wines are medium-bodied with medium acidity and tannins. The wines can vary in sweetness levels, with most of them having a sweet to the off-dry range. Muscatine wines usually have 10% to 11.5% ABV and provide intense fruit flavors, including yellow apple, ripe banana, cranberry, and lime peel. The subtler notes include floral, herbal, or citrus aromas and flavors. Desert-style, sweet muscadine wines are intensely sweet. However, the sweetness does not occur naturally. Most winemakers add plenty of sugar to the muscadine wines to offset the natural bitterness of the grapes. Dessert-style muscadines give tremendously intense bruised fruit flavors that might be off-putting to some. However, if you love sweet wines, muscadine wine is a style you should try.
How To Drink Muscadine Wine
All muscadine wines are best served cold. Serving a cold wine dulls the aromas and flavors, and because Muscadine is intensely sweet, it benefits from being cold or chilled. Even when served ice-cold, the wine will still be flavorful. However, if you want to enjoy all the delicious fruity flavors fully, you should serve the wine in the range of 55 to 60 degrees. Muscadine wine is a native to the Southern United States. The wine is hence often paired with Southern Comfort foods. The sweet flavor of muscadine wine goes well with fatty meats such as pork chops, ribs, brisket, and pulled pork. The wine can also be well served after a meal or paired with a flavorful, sweet, fruity dessert such as a trifle with custard and fruit. It is important to note that muscadine wines oxidize quickly; hence, it's best to drink them young. Most regions make quality muscadine wines despite the reputation for being overly sweet and cheap. Some of the best muscadine wines to try out include; Stonehaus red muscadine, Duplin Carolina Red Muscadine, Apple Barn Muscadine, Georgia Winery Muscadine, and Belle Meade Red Muscadine.
That's it. Hopefully, you now understand what Muscadine wine is and everything you need to know. Muscadine wines are often reputable for being extremely sweet and low quality, but this is not the case. Muscadine grapes are remarkably resilient and unique and prepare some delicious and superb wines. The wines are packaged with fruity, bold flavors and present an incredible treat served cool on a hot summer day. Therefore, the next time you have an American mood, consider seeking to get a bottle of Muscadine for a one-of-kind, satisfactory experience.
Written by Lily Wordsmith
Read more posts by Lily Wordsmith