Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Terrapin one of 3 wineries to toast grant

Morris Zwick said the other day he was working on paperwork. But that, said the owner of
Terrapin Station Winery in Maryland’s Cecil County, wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. It was the sacrifice for being one of three wineries in the state to recently receive a value-added producers grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture that will enable them to further develop their business.

Terrapin Station will receive almost $50,000 to aid in marketing and hire a full-time winemaker next year. “It’s matching funds and it’s working capital,” Zwick said. “So that should really help give us a kick start.”

Elk Run Vineyards received $263,000 to, among other things, enhance its marketing and sales strategies, and Cascia Vineyards in Stevensville was approved for an almost $100,000 grant to create a winery on its farm.

The suggestion was made to Zwick that the occasion was worth opening his best bottle of wine on the premises. “Unfortunately, I think the best is still in the tank, and we’re about to embark on getting all that boxed,” he said. “So we’re pretty close to December, January, to have our next release of wines.”

Those include a blend of Shiraz and Cabernet Franc that likely will be called Cecil Red, this year’s
Traminette, and a St. Vincent that will be labeled 2008 even though it will contain some juice from the 2007 grapes.

“So all those three things will come out immediately, and then after that we’ll have a release of Cayuga Vidal, a Cecil White blend, whatever this late-harvest thing is we’re working on right now [a combination of Vidal and Sangiovese]. It’s an experiment. We’ve always have some sort of experiment, and this year’s is this late-harvest thing. [That] will be a little bit later in the spring, but all of these will be ready by Wine in the Woods, which is in May.”