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Picture of our bottles   Bethlehem Valley
  Premium Wines
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Bethlehem Valley 2002 and 2001 Norton (called Cynthiana at the time) were given ratings of 87 and 85, respectively, in the October 2004 edition of Wine Spectator magazine. In 2002 we changed the name of our Cynthiana wine to the more commonly used Norton.

Unlike Chardonel, Norton is an old wine grape in Missouri. In fact, French vineyards relied on Missouri rootstock of this grape to restore French vines following a phylloxera outbreak in the 19th century. The grape is native to the United States and has been cultivated for wine-making purposes since the Civil War.

We allow our Norton to hang as late in the growing season as possible, usually until mid-October. The grapes are hand-picked in a manner similar to the Chardonel. Following crushing and fermentation, the wine is aged in French and American oak barrels for 12 to 24 months. After an additional 12-month bottle maturation, the wine is ready for release.

Often compared to Zinfandel, Norton has bold, intensely rich flavors and aromas of blackberries, pepper and toasty oak.