Ohio Wine AVAs: Grand River Valley
Yes, Ohio does wine...
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Grand River Valley
Grand River Valley AVA
occupies more than 125 thousand acres (50 thousand hectares) of northeastern Ohio as part of
the Lake Erie AVA
, within a two miles of the Grand River.
The nearby, relatively warm Lake Erie lengthens the growing season, reducing the risk of
spring frost and makes the fall season milder.
The well drained topsoils are sand- and gravel-based were molded by glaciation.
Winemakers here rely on hybrids including Vidal Blanc as well as several classic
vinifera varieties, especially cool-climate ones such as Riesling, Gewurztraminer and Pinot Gris plus
Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc.
Isle Saint George Pinot Grigio
Isle St. George
Isle St. George, Ohio AVA
occupies 640 acres (260 hectares) of North Bass Island in the western part Lake Erie. This is one of America's
smallest of America's smallest AVAs and is the only single island appellation. The island is owned by the state of Ohio, which leases a portion
to winemakers. One one winery actually grows grapes on the island.
During the middle of the Nineteenth Century mostly German immigrants
started making wine here. Popular grapes include Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Noir, and a few local varieties.
Lake Erie AVA
occupies almost 225 thousand acres (about
90 thousand hectares) in part of New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
Most of its vineyards are located near the lakeshore. The region includes 18 islands in the
American part of the lake. Lake Erie moderates the climate and lenghtens the growing season.
The region's glacial soil is high in sand and gravel and drains well.
Grape varieties started with
Franco-American hybrids but now international varieties such as Riesling, Gewurztraminer, and Pinot Gris among the whites and
Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc among the reds are grown.
Loramie Creek AVA
encompasses 3,600 acres (less than 1500 hectares)
in southwestern Ohio and is still waiting for its first winery but the AVA's grapes are popular, due to its
dark, loamy soils. The most popular grape variety is Baco Noir.
Ohio River Valley
Ohio River Valley AVA
is the second-largest AVA covering over 16 million acres
(well over 6 million hectares) along the Ohio River in the states of Indiana, West Virginia, Kentucky and Ohio.
To its south is a humid subtropical climate; to the north a humid continental climate providing
for an interesting mix. While most of the vineyards are planted in hybrids
Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Riesling also grow here.
Many critics say that the region is simply too large to be useful as an indication
of wine typicity.
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