The Local Food Report: estate bottled Chardonnay

When I looked down the row, I felt as though I'd stepped into a postcard from southern France. Mon cher ami! it read. Le vin içi est fantastique!

The grapes were Chardonnay, planted by the original owners of the vineyard in the 1990s, and still growing heavy and pale in the seaside air.

Truly, I was only a few miles from home, at Truro Vineyards on the north side of the town. The winery was releasing its first-ever estate-bottled Chardonnay, and I was visiting for a taste of the grapes. I walked from vines to barn, where winemakers were working to filter and bottle last year's harvest for bottling.

The Chardonnay would be a spectacular bottle, I was told, fancy and full. The grapes were still tart, puckering on my tongue and yielding several tiny seeds. At harvest time, they would lighten further and sweeten, ready to hit the barrel. And from only these grapes, grown right on the property, the vineyard would make an all-local Chardonnay.

Last year's is now ready—the first local vintage to hit the shelves. Pick some up at the Grape Stomp, held this Sunday from 2pm to 6pm on the vineyard lawn at 11 Shore Road, North Truro. At 3pm, kids will climb into a huge, wooden barrel, and stomp this year's harvest to their hearts' content, tiny feet squelching with glee. Moby Dick and the Wailers will be there too, filtering jazz across the lawn. With good food, good company, and good vino, it's bound to be fun.

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All text, photographs, and other original material copyright 2008-2010 by Elspeth Hay unless otherwise noted.