Friday, November 07, 2008

Morris Zwick's Terrapin Station Winery is First Small Winery Wine-in-a-Box in East

Morris Zwick began his winemaking career small, learning the trade as a home winemaker, building his craft slowly through a mix of reading and interaction with other winemakers. With a background in chemical engineering, he improved his craft over twelve years before deciding to open his own winery, Terrapin Station, which is named after Maryland’s state reptile.

Before deciding to open a commercial winery, however, he began as a grape grower, planting his seven acres of vines in 2003. Today he grows several varieties, such as Traminette, Cayuga, Cabernet Franc and Vidal. He enjoys experimenting with new types of grapes such as St. Vincent, of which he is currently the only Maryland grape grower.

The most noticeable thing that sets his winery apart from other state wineries is the containers in which he sells his wine. He decided to try something new to the state of Maryland and began selling the state’s first quality boxed wine.

“They started out as a preventative measure against corked wine, but as I experimented with the design I realized all the advantages of boxed wines,” says Zwick. “They are much lighter than traditional wine bottles, are easy to pour for a single serving and are much easier to recycle.” In addition to all of these benefits, Terrapin Station Winery donates $1 from each purchase to help the diamondback terrapin, an endangered animal native to the Chesapeake Bay.

His greatest challenge has been overcoming the stereotype that boxed wines are poor quality, but says companies like Black Box Wines and Banrock Station have begun to push the idea of quality boxed wine.

“I think what Morris is doing is innovative and fun and he is really helping to pioneer the way for new winemaking techniques in Maryland’s growing wine industry.” says Mark Emon from St. Michaels Winery.

Go to their website and see it all for yourself: