American Wines


American Wines -

American wine makers have duplicated nearly all the European Wines in popular demand. In some the results are disappointing to the connoisseur because probably of differences in climate and soil, as well as in handling, but in others a high measure of success has been attained - especially in Red wines of the Claret (or Bordeaux), Burgundy and Italian types; White wines, such as "Champagnes" and Rhine and Moselle types; Sauternes, and the stronger wines, such as Port, Sherry, Madeira, Malaga, etc. There are also several American wines which have won distinction under entirely new names, noteworthy among them being Angelica, Catawba, Concord, Delaware, Scuppernong and Zinfandel.

Still wines are produced in both the East and in California, and to a limited extent in the South; "Champagnes" principally in the East, especially in western New York, and the Central States.

In the East the grapes chiefly grown for sparkling wines are the Catawba and Delaware (see article on grapes), Elviras and Dutchess (white grapes), and the Isabella and Eumalans (black grapes). The wines from several or all of these six, and other, varieties are blended in the making of the best domestic "Champagnes." The Concord (also described in the article on grapes) is used for both red and white still wines and the Clinton and Ives for heavy red wines.

The most famous of Southern wine grapes are the Scuppernong (which see), Norton and Ives, the last two especially noteworthy as the source of fine clarets.

The largest wine product is that of California, the average output exceeding 40,000,000 gallons a year, about 25,000,000 gallons of which is "dry" wine. The greater part of the dry-wine district is in the neighborhood of the Bay of San Francisco, the modification of the temperature there by the sea fogs resulting in grapes ripening at the particular sugar and acidity points which are the most suitable for its fermentation. The sweet wines are produced very largely in the hot interior valleys, where the grapes ripen at a comparatively high sugar and low acid point. The industry is conducted on a very large scale, especially in the sweet wine districts - there are many wineries which crush more than 10,000 tons of grapes every season.


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