Wednesday, 22 July 2015 20:09

MenaRick features Spanish and Portuguese Style Wines

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By Kitsey E. Burns This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Nestled in the rolling hills of Wilkes County is a winery featuring not only spectacular views, but also unique hand-crafted Spanish and Portuguese style wines. Owner Rick Wampler, a native of California, and his wife Mena bought the property nine years ago. Their first grape vines were planted six years ago and they opened their tasting room in November of 2011. “I grew up in California making wine with my dad,” Wampler said. “I’ve always made wine for my own personal consumption.” Mena hails from Lisbon, Portugal, and the wines at MenaRick reflect the wine making styles popular in her native country and Spain. Their unique wines have drawn wine lovers to return again and again. “We have several varietals that no one else is growing or making wine out of,” Wampler said. In addition to a Syrah and Merlot, MenaRick also features Albariño, Grenache and Touriga wine as well as some sweet wines. Wampler called his wine making style “old school.” He said “it’s definitely not California,” though when it comes to the challenge of growing grapes in North Carolina. While temperatures remain more constant and rain is less frequent in the wine regions of California, Wampler said growing grapes in the temperamental North Carolina climate could be difficult at times. The husband and wife

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