Everything’s sweeter in the South

My sister-in-law, a Maryland native but North Carolina transplant, has has made me proud lately visiting all the wineries in her local area.

Call me naive but I had no idea they had wineries down in North and South Carolina, but she has proven me very wrong and to be honest she is making me slightly jealous with the sweet wines and the southern charm these wineries have.

The winery I am talking about today is

Duplin Winery

The grape of the Carolina’s and is in all Duplin’s wine and is the Muscadine. It’s most productive in a warm and  humid climate, which is why it thrives in the hot sticky south.

Muscadine is a true American grape and  it dates back to the 16th century. It’s used to make dry and port style wine but winemakers most times add sugar when producing. One could imagine this is just the southern way of doing things. Sweeter then better.

Duplin winery is the largest and oldest winery in the south. It dates back to the 1970’s when it was a collective family effort to produce this backyard wine from the muscadine grapes. Each harvest the whole family was there to pick, stomp and bottle. They have two locations to visit one in Rose Hill, NC and one in North Myrtle, SC.

Their wines range in color and sweetness levels. However, I would be safe to assume most all are considered sweet. But it also just depends how sweet is sweet to you. The muscadine can be all variations of white and red and is common to see blush as well. All the Duplin wines also vary in price but the majority are under $15.

Now get this!!!! The $10.00 tasting allows you to sample up to 10 wines on the tasting sheet and gourmet crackers and dip. Plus, you get to keep your Duplin wine glass and have a serving of wine afterwards from the tasting sheet. You do not find this in Napa!!!!

I am not stopping until I tell you about their Sweetzer. My sister-in-law makes these look sooooo good. They are mixes to add to their wines to make a delicious frozen wine conction. They range from Peach Belini pictured here to Chocotini!


These were before Frozé and honestly they might be cooler. You buy the mix for $9.99 and pair it with a bottle of their wine (they have suggested pairings). You can also try the different ones at the wineries. This is perfect for the southern heat!

I cannot wait to visit the Carolina’s soon and I’ll be making a mad dash to Duplin Winery when I arrive!  Stay tuned for more guest star appearances from non-California wineries. Switching it up a bit!

Peju Province Winery

Our last stop was at Peju because we knew it was open until 6 pm. That is late in Napa time as most winery’s close at 4 pm.

Peju is always packed. Everytime I’ve gone it’s a mad house and for good reason. Peju has a wide variety of great wines ranging in all prices. There is also no reservation needed for less than 7 but with that being said it’s always a bit of a wait for you to be ushered to one of 4 tasting counters.

Peju’s outside decor is memorable. It’s a pink stone building and has impeccable trimmed gardens surrounding the vineyards. The most memorable aspect is the 40 ft tall sycamore trees that line the entrance as you drive in. 

My favorite:

It was probably 100 degrees that day and this was my last tasting. So basically I wanted the most refreshing thing they had.

2016 Carnival ($18)

Made with French Colombard

Aromas of dried apricot and honeysuckle complemented by flavors of green apple, passion fruit and lychee.

Peju Province ($23)

Aromas of herbs, violets, nutmeg and tart plum. Plush tannins give Province structure while bright acidity refreshes the palate with flavors of cranberry, ripe raspberry and Queen Anne cherry.

Tasting:

We did the classic tasting for $35 but guess what military is free and we had a bunch of military members!

We first were served both the Sauvignon Blanc and Province before selecting three additional wines that we would like to explore. If you favor reds or whites or maybe both you can make the tasting based off your palate.

Sum it up:

  1. All varietys with prices for everyone
  2. Unique grounds & estate
  3. No reservations required for less than 7 and military is free classic tasting!!!