|Tour Alabama’s Wine Country!
|| Early in 2001 the Patrick Family planted an experimental vineyard of native grapes and hardy hybrid grape varieties. Today there are over 2000 vines planted at Ozan with plans for expansion. A number of the cross hybrids have shown an ability to thrive in the Central Alabama Environment. Future plans include additional plantings of these red and white winemaking grapes on the 24 acre estate.
The foundation of the vines in production are the Norton ( also known as Cynthiana ) which produces a robust red wine with a structure suitable for aging. This native American variety was isolated from early Virginia vines by Dr. D.N. Norton in the 1820’s and planted extensively since the 1830’s. In 1873, at a worldwide wine competition held in Vienna, a Norton produced in Missouri was labeled as the “best red wine of all nations.” Most early plantings of Norton, as were all winemaking vineyards, were destroyed during prohibition and only in the last two decades has this grape seen renewed interest with national recognition and numerous eastern U.S. plantings.
An open trellis system, the Geneva Double Curtain, was specifically chosen to accommodate the long growing season and the vigorous growth habits of the vines. The Geneva system elevates the canopy above the vineyard floor allowing for more air movement and uniform sun exposure, which results in a better wine grape.