Grape & Wine Diversity in North Carolina

In North Carolina, you’ll find wine as unique as the land itself. In fact, no other region in the world grows every major type of grape including vinifera, French-American hybrids, labruscas and muscadines. The state’s varied geography, climate and soil makes this feat possible.

grape varieties

The state’s geography ranges from coastal islands to mountains rising 6,000 feet high. This geographical diversity creates a variety of climate conditions. Higher elevations in the Appalachians have a climate similar to southern Canada while areas along the southern coast below Wilmington can be considered subtropical. From an abundance of rainfall in the mountains to dry ocean breezes along the coast, wine makers here have adapted well to various conditions, including the soil.

In the Piedmont region, the red clay and heaviness of the soil puts more stress on vines, which is not necessarily a bad thing. Many people believe that success in winemaking comes only with struggle. In North Carolina, high-quality grapes are even grown in sandy and rocky soil and Martin Vineyards on Knotts Island is actually planted on a sand dune. So it’s no surprise that a land this diverse produces wines so rich in depth and character.