Spirit Cruises January 2023 Leaderboard

Exploring Coeur d'Est, a Unique, Blended New Jersey Wine

by Robin Shreeves on Sep 24, 2015 in Wine

When you’re visiting the wineries of South Jersey’s Outer Coastal Plain, make sure you ask at each winery if they bottle Coeur d’Est, a red wine blend made exclusively from grapes grown in the region. The wine is a collaboration between some of the member wineries of the Outer Coastal Plain American Viticultural Avea (AVA).

If you didn’t know the wineries in the region were part of an AVA, you’re not alone. This blend is one of the ways they are working together to get the word out that New Jersey makes premium wine.

“Knowing we needed to identify the area somehow, we chose to make this blend.” said Jim Quarella, President of the Outer Coastal Plain Vineyard Association and founder of Bellview Winery in Landisville, NJ. “We knew it had to be a quality wine.”

To get wine lovers in the region excited about the blend, the OCPVA held a naming contest. Well over 100 submissions came in, and Coeur d’Est was the winner. The name (pronounced ker dest) is French for Heart of the East. The wine is made from grape varieties that are the heart of the wine growing region and many of them are French in origin.

To ensure quality, participating wineries must submit blends to the Beverage Tasting Institute. The wine must earn a silver medal (a rating of 85) or better to be eligible for the Coeur d’Est label. They must also must follow the guidelines for the blend to create their own Coeur d’Est, deciding which percentage of the grapes to use in their wine. The blend must use Chambourcin, a grape that grows exceptionally well in the region.

“Chambourcin is what gives us our uniqueness in the blend,” said Quarella.

The grape can be 25 percent to 50 percent of the blend and each winemaker has the option to blend it with Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, and/or Petite Verdot - all grapes that consistently produce well in the region.

Blend Composition
Permitted Varieties
Variety %

75% - 100% of blend
Chambourcin
Cabernet Franc
Merlot
25%-50%
0% - 50%
0% - 50%

Up to 25% of blend
Cabernet Sauvignon
Syrah
Petit Verdot
0% - 25%
0% - 25%
0% - 15%

The first Grand Tasting of Coeur d’Est happened a little over a year ago with nine wineries pouring their blends. There are currently four wineries still selling the first bottling: Bellview Winery, Sharrott Winery, Auburn Road Vineyard, and Heritage Vineyards.

I had the opportunity do a tasting of Sharrott’s Coeur d’Est ($34.99), a 50/50 blend of Chambourcin and Cabernet Franc. The wine begins dry on the palate (that’s the Chambourcin) and bursts with a lovely, berry juiciness on the finish (that’s the Cabernet Franc). It would pair well with beef or a hearty red-sauced meat and pasta dish. The Beverage Tasting Institute awarded it 92 points and a gold medal. It’s definitely an example of what Coeur d’Est is meant to be, a wine that shows New Jersey can produce a quality, premium wine. 

Top photo via Heritage Vineyards; Coeur d'Est photo by Jennifer Malme, Sharrott Winery


Tags: Wine
Recent Articles
spacer

Feedback

How are we doing? Tell us what you like or don't like and how we can improve. We would love to hear your thoughts!

*Name:
*E-mail:
*Suggestions:
 
Dizengoff: Inside Look at the New Reimagined Restaurant, Bar, & Cocktails

Dizengoff: Inside Look at the New Reimagined Restaurant, Bar, & Cocktails

Last year, Dizengoff and Abe Fisher decided to join forces and embark on an exciting new chapter. After closin...read more ›

by Drink Philly Mar 5, 2024
Behind the Bar: Tom Foy of Butcher Bar

Behind the Bar: Tom Foy of Butcher Bar

In this installment of Behind the Bar, we sit down with bartender Tom Foy of Butcher Bar...read more ›

by Drink Philly Feb 19, 2024
The Drink Nation Presents: The Home Bar Project

The Drink Nation Presents: The Home Bar Project

Have you ever dreamed of having an amazing home bar, filled with bottles you actually use and the tools you need to execute a fine crafted cocktail? E...read more ›

by The Drink Nation Nov 14, 2014
SPONSORED
Spirit Cruises January 2023 Desktop Bottom Rectangle 1
48 Record Bar: An Inside Look at an Audiophile's Listening Room & Cocktail Bar

48 Record Bar: An Inside Look at an Audiophile's Listening Room & Cocktail Bar

48 Record Bar is the newest addition to the growing Listening Room trend in Philadelphia...read more ›

by Drink Philly Feb 19, 2024
The Best Cocktail Bars in Philadelphia

The Best Cocktail Bars in Philadelphia

In a city with new bar openings every week, it can be hard to keep up with the everchanging Philly cocktail landscape. Don't worry, we've got you cove...read more ›

by Drink Philly Dec 14, 2023
Best Bars for Outdoor Drinking in Philadelphia, 2023

Best Bars for Outdoor Drinking in Philadelphia, 2023

We've got your definitive list of where to drink outside in Philadelphia...read more ›

by Drink Philly May 27, 2023
Pamper Yourself at These Spas with Bars in Philadelphia

Pamper Yourself at These Spas with Bars in Philadelphia

Whether you're going solo or heading out with friends, we've got just the place for your to relax and enjoy a good drink...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Apr 5, 2023
The Best Mocktails, Zero Proof, & Non-Alcoholic Drinks in Philadelphia

The Best Mocktails, Zero Proof, & Non-Alcoholic Drinks in Philadelphia

Not drinking alcohol tonight? These bars and restaurants have you covered with inventive, thoughtful, and down...read more ›

by Michelle Cassidy Jan 11, 2023
Inflation Hits PA Wine & Spirits with 4% Price Increase Across 3,500 Products

Inflation Hits PA Wine & Spirits with 4% Price Increase Across 3,500 Products

The PLCB, announced that a 4% price increase would go into effect on 3,554 of its most popular wine and spirit...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Jan 9, 2023
The Philly Distiller Who Got Laid Off and Moved to Hawaii to Make Gin

The Philly Distiller Who Got Laid Off and Moved to Hawaii to Make Gin

In this segment we speak to Olivia Babiec, the former Philadelphia Distiller who moved to Hawaii to make gin...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Jan 5, 2023
SPONSORED
Spirit Cruises January 2023 Desktop Bottom Rectangle 2
View all Articles

Sign up to get weekly drinking news, bar reviews, events and more sent directly to your inbox!

Close