The Best Wines from All 28 South Jersey Wineries
Happy National Drink Wine Day! I love how we make holidays for everything these days. I love wine and I love local wines. I’ve made a habit of visiting local wineries or buying local wines. Here is South Jersey the soil is perfect for wine. Most people when they think of U.S. wines they think of Napa Valley or the Finger Lakes, but here in South Jersey we make some pretty great wines.
Here are the best wines from all 28 South Jersey Wineries.
I love a good Syrah aka Shiraz, it is a very dark red wine. The Signature Series Syrah from Hawk Haven won a silver medal in the 2017 Fingerlakes International Wine Competition.
This red blend has the perfect balance of dry reds. The winery's website describes the wine as, "46% Chambourcin, 19% Merlot, 19% Syrah, 16% Cabernet Franc. Rich and robust flavors of stewed plum and blackberry followed by nuances of white pepper, sweet tea and cinnamon. The wine offers soft and elegant tannins with a dark fruit finish."
Another great rosé from another great S.J. winery. "[A] [s]weet blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Gewurztraminer Lychee fruit and strawberry notes Bright, lingering finish."
Chardonnay is by far my favorite white wine, I love the bold buttery taste of a good Chardonnay. Jessie Creeks Chardonnay has that buttery finish, smells of vanilla, nutmeg, and citrus, and has notes of Asian pear and sweet apples.
You don't see Dolcetto a lot in New Jersey, however according to Natali Vineyards this grape grows well in Cape May. Dolcetto means "little sweet one", but it is actually a dry wine. The winery calls it a "[s]oft, fruity and light wine."
Chestnut Run Farm considers themselves an artisan winery. Their Spiced Sweet Asian Pear has won a double gold medal in the 2012 Finger Lakes International Wine Competition. They blend Asian pears ans ginger root. You can drink it chilled or warmed.
Who doesn't love a good sangria, especially on a hot summer day. Sharrott's summer sangria uses a lot of citrus fruits.
The Ameritage at Coda Rosa is an award winning wine for the winery. It is a red wine that they refer to as "crowd pleasing." Coda Rosa also offers group wine making, which makes 20 cases or 240 bottles of wine!
I love how S.J. wineries combine other crops of New Jersey with their wines. Tomasello Winery's Cranberry Wine is 100% cranberry and has a tart, but smooth finish.
I haven't seen this white wine in many Jersey wineries. The Villard Blanc from Cedarvale is described by their website as, "...[g]rapefruit-like acidity with hints of honey."
If you Google Cantina Mas or fresh draft wine the only winery that will come up is Amalthea. The wine is poured directly from the cask to a plastic container they call a tote. You can store the wine like this for a decent amount of time, being very cautious about air getting in. It makes a completely different wine drinking experience.
Their Shamong series wines are made from North American grape varieties. According to their site, "Shamong Pinelands Blush is a Gold Medal Winner in the “Sweet Rosés” category at the New Jersey Wine Competition sponsored by Rutgers Cooperative Extension."
Blackberries and red wine compliment each other very well in a wine. "45 day fermented blackberries blended with our 2014 Merlot leaving the ultimate in semi-sweet red wine. This wine is out of this world when served chilled or at room temperature." They suggest making it into a spritzer.
Something interesting I learned about South Jersey, the climate and soil is similar to the Champagne region in France. Renault is known for their American Champagne. They offer steal barrel fermentation and bottler fermentation. They've won the bronze medal in 2009 and 2013 in the NJ State Wine Competition.
Rosé has become very popular lately, you may be able to credit millennials for that. The light pink color and the fact that the phrase "yes way rosé" makes a great t-shirt may have something to do with it. Auburn Road makes a dry rosé with some notes of tangerine, citrus and strawberries.
Did you know New Jersey used to have a ton of dandelion farms? Yes, those yellow flowered weeds you pull from your garden have many uses. Belleview Winery have taken those dandelions and made a wine from it. It is a 50-year-old family recipe.
A port is a great after dinner drink that warms your soul. Port also has a higher alcohol content than other wines. The red Port at Cape May Winery has a spice, black cherry finish.
Many wineries offer a variety of fruit wines. However, DiMatteo's Blueberry Wine is made 100% Jersey grown blueberries from Hammonton.
The Sauvignon Blanc from Turdo Vineyards has flavors of melon, lemon-grass, and grapefruit.
Pomegranates have become very popular over the past few years. You can get everything pomegranate flavored, so why not wine? DiBella offers a lemon pomegranate wine.
Wine may be made from grapes, but they taste nothing like grape juice. That was until now. Grape Kiss from Southwind tastes like grape soda.
I've never seen so many fruit wines like Summit City offers. If you like a fruit, good chance they have it. My favorite fruit is kiwi and I was so excited to see they offer it in wine form.
Many fruit wines you see out there are white table wines which are then flavored with the fruit. Monroeville's Oak Aged Apple is 100% apple and is, like the name says, aged in an oak barrel.
They refer to themselves as the best kept secret in Cape May. Their Pino Gris is, "...crisp yet elegant Pinot Grigio opens with a bouquet of acacia flowers and presents with a semi-dry, well-balanced essence of crisp apple and ripe pear."
Here in Jersey we are known for our tomatoes, so why not mix the tomato with our wine? That's what Wagonhouse did with their tomato wine. "Together with its partner in crime, the hot red pepper, they joined forces to give you a Kick in a Glass!"
Chambourcin is a popular wine you see a lot here in South Jersey. It is a French-American hybrid. Autumn Lake started bottling their 2015 end of last year.