The Norton Grape

contact the vintners to congratulate them on this exquisite wine. No dice. The email kept bouncing back. Here's what we had to say . . .
Simply must say it--your 2009 Illinois Cellars Norton has managed to do what no other Norton we've tasted to date has been able to do: it has informed, educated, and finally initiated my palate into the subtle secret of what the Norton grape really can be when vinted in the best way.
Along with that comes an appreciation for this grape above all the varieties of vinifera grown away from their European home in California. For example, I have yet to taste a Pinot Noir grown in the U.S. that even vaguely resembles the taste of what comes from Burgundy.
And here's an interesting thing: last night, my wife expressed the opinion that your Norton reminds her of that unmistakably distinctive Côte d'Or taste. So far as I've looked into the mystery behind the origin of the Norton variety, I've read that Vitus aestivalis is thought to be a hybrid created from a domestic mid-American grape such as we have growing all about our Missouri home here, and some variety of Vitis vinifera. Maybe my Glenda is right to have fixed on Pinot Noir. It's a notably cold tolerant vine, seeing it is grown to great success so far north as the Rheingau and Pfalz regions of Germany.
Interesting article in the NY Times on the "spätburgunder" . . .
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Anyway! Thank you so much for this great, great wine! -- Mr. & Mrs. J.P. McDonald
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