It's an unexpected delight in South Louisiana.
Pontchartrain Vineyards is tucked into the gentle low hills of Northern St. Tammany Parish.
It’s a region that’s known for its muscadine, blueberry, blackberry and strawberry sweeter wines, Pontchartrain Vineyards has been taking on the challenge of growing bunch grapes in this hot humid climate for 25 years.
The answer is this white grape, the blanc du bois, a grape hybrid developed in the similar climate of Florida.In late spring, these blanc du bois grapes are about the size of a pea. It will be mid-July to August before they’re ready to be picked and turned into wine. And the locally grown white grapes are supplemented with other grapes imported from California.
This winery focuses on mostly dry table wines, both white and red. During a spring and fall concert series, the wine mixes easily with live outdoor music for an evening of wine and jazz. And it’s only an hour north of New Orleans.
As patrons fill the open field with folding chairs and tables, picnic blankets, crackers, cheese and wine, it’s a chance to sip and savor and relax for a few hours in a true South Louisiana vineyard.