Florida was the first state in the United States to grow wine grapes, with the first vineyards planted in the 16th century. Vitis Vinifera (a grape that is native to Europe and the Mediterranean) does not do well in the hot, humid Florida climate, but there are plenty of hybrid grapes that flourish here, including Blanc Du Bois, Muscadine, and Stover. Although there are no designated American Viticultural Areas in Florida, there is plenty of great wine. For an overview of the vineyards, wineries and wines of Florida, see below.
Brewer Cellars Custom Winery. This family owned winery has been creating award winning wines in Florida since 2004. They specialize in custom wines, as well as mead (honey wines), fruit, and dessert wines. Whether you are looking for Merlot, Viognier, or Zinfandel, you will find it at this Florida winery. You can also sample such fruit wines as Sweet Peach, Green Apple, and Mango Citrus. Be sure to try their Flamingo Blush, a White Merlot with aromas of cherries and raspberries, and flavors of watermelon and other fruits. Also try their Cabernet Sauvignon, a delicious red wine with aromas of black currant and pepper, followed by flavors that include ginger and vanilla. For more information on this Florida winery and its wines, click here.
Dakotah Winery. This Florida winery planted its first vineyards in 1985, consisting of 200 Muscadine grape vines. (FYI, Muscadine grapes are native to Florida, and were used to create wines 100 years before any were made in California.) Today over 6,000 grape vines, consisting of over thirty varieties of Muscadine grapes, flourish in the 12 acre vineyards, where this family owned winery produces some amazing and award winning wines. If you appreciate and love Chardonnay, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon wines, be sure to try this Florida winery’s best. Their Noble wine has lovely peach aromas, followed by flavors of strawberry and citrus. Also try their Merlot, which has delicious aromas of caramel and violet, and flavors that include vanilla and plum. For more information on this Florida winery and its wines, click here.
San Sebastian Winery. Located in St. Augustine, Florida, this winery has been creating award winning wines since 1996. Their 80-acre vineyard grows Stover, Suwannee, Noble and Carlos wine grapes, among others. This winery also purchases grapes from other Florida vineyards. Be sure to try their Blanc du Bois, a semi-dry wine with peach and pear aromas, followed by flavors that include pineapple and spice. Also try their Blanc de Fleur, a sparkling wine with floral and green apple aromas, and flavors of tropical fruits and honey. For more information on this Florida winery and its wines, click here.