The finished product smells fruity, but is far less sweet than most Catawba wines found in stores today. Carillon’s loyalty to tradition is the reason for the distinct taste of this batch.
“We’re real excited about it,” Kress said. “The other thing that’s different is someone might try a Catawba but think it’s really sweet and heavy and it’s because most Catawba done today are fermented and stored in stainless steel. The fermentation process is actually stopped early to preserve some of the sugars and so you end up with it very sweet.”
Sticking to the brewery’s mission, the winery only ferments and ages in white Oak barrels. The result is a 10% ABV wine — tasting much drier and almost comparable to a Champagne without the carbonation.
Carillon Catawba is now available at the brewery in $10 bottles and by the glass.