Friday, June 09, 2017

Crow Vineyards: Turning Heads in the Mid-Atlantic! (MD)


In March of 2017 I went to a great mid-Atlantic wine tasting organized by Paul Vigna, a terrific mid-Atlantic wine writer. The wines featured were among the best on the entire seaboard. One of the ones feature was Crow Vineyards of Maryland.

Roy and Judy Crow, owners of the beautiful 365-acre working farm located in Kennedeyville, MD, have succeeded in implementing sustainable changes to their third generation family farm by adding new opportunities for growth while still preserving its original flavor.

A new business plan allowed for farming operations to be expanded beginning with the renovation of their 1847 family farmhouse into the Crow Farmstay B&B. This change created a communal feel, giving people a firsthand experience of farm operations, such as corn production, angus beef, small flock of chickens, hay, etc.

A movement in Kent County promoting grape growing to farmers in the area prompted the Crows to begin their next development. 

“We knew that growing grapes was something that would fit well with our overall business plan,” said Roy Crow, which then expanded the business to include vineyard manager son Brandon Hoy, Schmidt Vineyard Management Company to help guide operations, ShoreVines as a valuable promotion partner, as well as becoming members of the Maryland Grape Growers Association. All of these additions led to the planting of 3 ½ acres in 2010 contributing towards the production of wine.

The Crow Vineyards Sparkling Vidal Blanc 2014 was produced using the traditional méthode champenoise. The wine is made from Clone 256 on Rootstock 3309, on Matapeake Silt Loam, 5-120 ft elevation, on 5-10% slopes at the Crow Vineyard, Kent County, Maryland. Harvested in September. The wine went through primary fermentation in stainless steel, and was followed by a secondary fermentation in bottle. It was then aged for 13 months before being hand disgorged in small lots, then hand corked, caged and labeled.

This was a spectacular sparkler!!! The first whiff was a of fresh baked bread. Then, lots of tropical fruit such as pineapple, lychee, as well as traditional stone fruit like red ripe apples, and a hint of honeysuckle. Across the palate baked apple led the way, with peach and apricot in close support, followed by a nice minerality and a lovely citrus ending. Excellent!

The Crow Vineyards Barbera Rosé 2015 is made from Clone VCR 15 grown on Rootstock 101-14, in Matapeake Silt Loam, 5-120 ft. elevation, on 5-10% slopes at the Crow Vineyard, Kent County, Maryland. It was hand harvested on September 24 and 28, 2015, and was bottled April 26, 2016, and aged 3 mos prior to release. 122 cases were produced.

This was another lovely surprise! Fresh strawberry and red currant were complimented by a lovely floral bouquet. Across the palate cam mango, oranges, and peaches with a lovely citrus ending and a hint of cream. Silky smooth and refreshing!!!!!

Katrina Jordan was the winemaker at Crow at the time, and deserved a ton of credit for these fine wines. She has since moved on, having traveled across the country to California where she now works for Jackson Family.

Roy and Judy are making some incredible wines at Crow Vineyards! Go! And taste some!