Tuesday, May 22, 2012
HYBRIDS VS. VINIFERA PARTS 1-3: PHILIP WAGNER AND DR. KONSTANTIN FRANK - THE COMPLETE SERIES
In September of 2009 I wrote this series of articles about the pendulum between vinifera and hybrids. By turns the struggles between hybrid and vinifera have been swaying back and forth for more than 60 years on the east coast.
Phillip Wagner in the 1940s and 1950s was seen as the savior of eastcoast winemaking, introducing numerous hybrids that survived the often icy cold winters, prospered in the humid sweltering summers, and offered ripe fruit before the end of a truncated season.
Then Dr. Konstantin Frank proved the vinifera could in fact thrive, not just survive, in the north east, and proved it firt at Gold Seal champagne company, and then later at his own Dr. Konstantin Frank Vinifera WIne Cellars. A legion of loyal immitators included Herman J. Wiemer, followed his lead. Today, vinifera provide quality wine up and down the east coast.
Now, in a search for grapes to help define or at least separate themselves form the pack, winemakers are looking for hybrids, heirlooms, and newly developed strains from university programs from Cornell and Minnesota to help achieve this.
This three part series helps to piece together the story of this revolution and how it has created the modern wine movement.
HYBRIDS VS. VINIFERA PART 1: PHILIP M. WAGNER
HYBRID VS. VINIFERA PART 2: DR. KONSTATIN FRANK
HYBRID VS. VINIFERA PART 3: TODAY