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 Frontenac Grape
Michigan U-Pick Grapes

A Blue-Black Wine Grape
Similar Varieties: Dechaunac, Foch, Baco Noir

Frontenac red wine grape
 
 
red-grape2-s  Ripens mid September  --  A new hardy red wine variety from Minnessota- very popular with winemakers, has a slight "cherry" overtone.
 

 

redwine-icon  Usage Notes  --  I  have not made a lot of Frontenac wine since it is so new in our vineyard and our customers pick it all. What I have tasted so far has been excellent!

Click here for Frontenac winemaking info .....

 


 

grapeharvest-icon Harvest Notes:

 

Ripening Information for our 5th WEEKEND - October 3, 4 & 5, 2014

Frontenac - BUMPER CROP - IT IS RIPE NOW!

Click here for a ripening summary and grape prices for the whole vineyard .....

 


 

red-grape2-s Variety Info  --   More vines of Frontenac are growing in MN than of any other variety, due to overall viticultural performance and excellent wine quality.

Frontenac is a very cold-hardy vine and has borne a full crop after temperatures as low as -30° F. The small black berries are produced on medium to large clusters that are usually slightly loose. As a result, berry splitting and bunch rot have been rare, even in wet years. Frontenac has been a consistently heavy producer and sometimes requires cluster thinning. Frontenac is vigorous and usually becomes established quickly.

Frontenac ripens in late midseason, and it is important to let the fruit hang long enough to fully mature, to reduce the acidity to workable levels. This is less of a problem when Frontenac is grown further south, under warmer conditions.

Fortunately, the pH does not often rise to dangerous levels. Frontenac is a good sugar producer with 24-25 Brix not uncommon.

Frontenac wine typically has a pleasant cherry aroma with berry and plum evident in many cases. The herbaceousness of its wild riparia background is almost entirely absent.

The color is usually a garnet red, but can become excessively dark with long periods of skin time. Malolactic fermentation is essential to reduce the wine’s high acidity. Tannin levels are usually relatively low.

Frontenac is very disease-resistant, with good resistance to powdery mildew and near-immunity to downy.

 


 

questionmark-tiny2  Where are the Frontenac vines located in the vineyard?

Rows 73 to 77

Each row has about 50 vines.

Frontenac in one of the more recent plantings in our vineyard and it is becoming established quite well.

Rows 73 to 75 were planted in 2004 and rows 76 & 77 were planted in 2007.

The Frontenac rows are trained to a "Geneva Double Curtain" trellis, which means there are 2 top wires 4 feet apart (like utility poles) This gives the vines more room to grow.

frontenacvineyard-s

 

 

 

Click here for larger image...

 


 

  world link-tiny2-s Links & Resources 


 

redwineglass-tiny2-s    Where can I Purchase Frontenac Wine?

Frontenac is often used in commercial red blends.

"Simply Red" from St. Julien Winery in Michigan is a typical red blend of this style.

Red blends can be usually purchased in Michigan from local wine shops and grocery stores.

 

Please visit our Winery Locator Page to find wineries which make this kind of wine....

 

Frontenac red wine grape

 

 
 
Grape and Winemaking Quicklinks
 
Please make any Comment or Question you desire and join in our conversation about this page or anything - Grapes or Winemaking!
(View all the Talk Around the Winebarrel Comments here...)

 
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Vineyard FAQ'S

 
 

What do grape blossoms smell like?

Walking through the vineyard when it is in full bloom is a unique experience. The scent is slightly more subtle than other fruits. Each flower blossom will develop into a separate berry...
How do you propagate grape vines?

Grape vines are propagated by taking dormant shoots pruned off during the spring. These 3 to 4 bud long cuttings are planted in garden soil and grown one year. The next year they are ready to plant in your vineyard. They will be the same variety as the vine that they were taken from.

What time of the year should I prune my vines?

Grape vines may be pruned any time that the leaves are off and they are dormant. Many vineyards with huge acres of vines to prune may work all winter, but we prefer to prune in the spring. In the spring, any winter damage that has occurred will be visible and pruning adjustments will be made.

Do Michigan vines need to be grafted?

Most vinifera vines that are grown (such as Cabernet, Reisling, etc) need to be grafted on to a strong rootstock because they are not tolerant of the Phloxera louse, a pest that will kill the vines. Most all vines in California and any vinifera vine grown in Michigan are grafted for this reason.

Read more...

Do grapes need a frost to ripen?

Absolutely not. There are early and late season varieties, an early season grape left on the vine until frost will be mushy and overripe.
 
Once a frost hits the vine and all the leaves are burned off, any further photosynthesis or ripening will cease...

How is our vineyard different than others?

I do not know any other vineyard that has more than 20 varieties of grapes and sells 100% U-PICK!

Since we are not a winery we do not keep the premium grapes for ourselves and sell what is left to local customers.

YOU are our only customers!

What is your favorite grape?

We get this asked of us all the time. Which grape makes the best wine, best jelly, best juice, etc. This is very difficult to answer & also varies from season to season. Many of our customers have very different tastes than we do.
My personal favorites as of April, 2007:

Read more...

Do you recommend oak barrels for winemaking?
Oak barrels can be very useful in winemaking, but they can be problematic and I prefer glass carboys.

Oak barrels are excellent for large amounts of wine such as 55 gallons. The ration of air to wine is just right. When you use smaller barrels...
 

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