RED WINE GRAPES
SABREVOIS: (ES 2-1-9 ) Red wine sister seedling of St. Croix . Coming to notice in Quebec , where it has become well established and named for town there. Hardier, more vigorous, heavy producer, extremely disease resistant, said to make more complex wine then St. Croix . Ripens with higher acid than St. Croix – otherwise appears to be a superior variety. Needs a big trellis to handle vigor.
FRONTENAC: A red wine release from the University of Minnesota . Has good hardiness and is able to bear heavily. Seems immune to downy mildew but has moderate susceptibility to black rot and powdery mildew. Very prone to Anthracnose and Phylloxera which can be a problem some years. Wine is medium bodied with delightful cherry and plum flavors. Acid is often high and must be dealt with.
KING OF THE NORTH: Apparently and accidental wild/domestic hybrid form southern Wisconsin with great hardiness, vigor and production capacity. Ripens quite late with high acid but when finished somewhat sweet produces a rich, fruity, aromatic Concord-style red wine which has met consumer acceptance in many areas. Needs large trellis to be grown successfully.
** ST. CROIX : Productive juicy blue grape with medium berries and clusters, ripening about with FOCH. ST. CROIX makes a vinifera style wine that has won prizes in Minnesota and National competitions.
WHITE WINE GRAPES
BRIANNA: White wine grape with a greenish-gold color and a thick skin. Also good as a seeded table grape. A French-American hybrid bred by Elmer Swenson.
FRONTENAC BLANC: Identical to Frontenac and Frontenac Gris except for the color. Disease resistant and extremely hardy. Makes white wine. Early indications have shown a distinctive taste and aroma from it’s siblings.
**PRAIRIE STAR: Good vigor and bearing capacity, reliability couples with excellent cold hardiness. Produces a neutral or California style white wine. Often used as a blending wine ( excellent balance & body), it makes a suitable varietal some seasons. Ripens mid-season with acid below 1% and sugar over 20%.
**LOUISE(SWENSON): (ES-4-8-33). Moderate vigor and good productivity. Has shown to be excellent culturally in cold regions with excellent reliability. Wine is flowery & aromatic with honey flavors. However, it tends to be light in body and alcohol and often used for blending with Prairie Star or La Crosse . Ripens mid-season.
***FRONTENAC GRIS(gree): A color mutation of the original Frontenac vine. Fruit is bronze in color & produces a nearly white juice with slight salmon tinge when pressed w/o skin contact. Wine is apricot or peach in flavor not similar to original Frontenac. Also useful as a rose or cherry colored ice wine, wich makes it valuable as a sparkling wine variety as well. Culturally the vine appears to be identical to Frontenac in appearance & growth characteristics.
***LACRESCENT: University of Minnesota production. Produces a white wine with delicious pineapple & apricot flavor when finished sweet as a desert or cocktail wine. Vine of good vigor & hardiness. Producing a beautiful golden fruit, its major fault is a notable susceptibility to downy mildew.
SWENSON WHITE : Excellent white wine grape. Disease resistant. Large, yellow thick-skinned fruit.
BETA: Very hardy and disease resistant. A small, tart, blue fruit with a slipskin. Best for jams and jellies.
BLUEBELL: Old University of Minnesota hybrid that looks and tastes somewhat like concord but is much hardier, earlier to ripen and has better flavor for a table grape. Excellent disease resistance with low susceptibility to Anthracnose in very wet seasons. Cluster size is medium to large when vines mature and berries are large with a beautiful bluish color. Ripens early to mid-season and makes excellent grape juice as well. A true grape flavor!
KAY GRAY : Disease resistant. A juicy, sweet, white, slipskin grape. Not recommended for wine. Excellent table and juice grape.
KING OF THE NORTH: Described in detail in Red Wine section. Makes a very grapey juice, slightly tart Concord-style eating grape late in the season. Also used for jelly/jam.
SOMERSET SEEDLESS : A very hardy seedless table grape. Rose colored medium sized fruit.
**SWENSON RED: An outstanding table grape for northern areas with its large meaty non-labrusca grapes and good sized clusters. Grapes are Red to almost blue. Ripens about a month before Concord . Generates repeat sales at fruit stands.
VALIANT: Hardy grape similar to Beta. Large, blue slip-skinned fruit. Vigorous.
**ES-6-4-47: A neutral flavored black seedless table grape with generally good cultural characteristics. In Canada it is known as “Montreal Blues” and very popular as a table grape.