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Pinnacle Ridge, A Local Winery With An International Reputation

In the best of taste, visitors to the 2012 Kutztown Folk Festival can learn about wine from the internationally-acclaimed Pinnacle Ridge Winery - a vintner that year after year garners awards at prestigious competitions. And what could be more appropriate than the location of this excellent vineyard - a few minutes from the Festival along old Route 22!

Local history and well as fine wine-making are important to Pinnacle Ridge Winery. Fifteen years ago, Brad Knapp established the winery, housed in a beautifully renovated Pennsylvania bank barn, originally built in 1851. The thick stone foundation provides cool, stable temperatures year-round - ideal conditions for the production and aging of wine. The processing area, which includes French and American oak barrels and stainless steel tanks, is entirely visible from the lower level tasting room. The sparkling wines are produced in what was once a potato cellar, near the barn.

The wines have local flavors too since about 80% of the fruit grown to produce the products is from farms in the surrounding area.

Brad Knapp explains that they grow both French-American and European vinifera grapes. such as Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier.”These are the same classic varietals produced in the celebrated Champagne region of France,” he said. Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Blanc, Merlot, Vidal, Cayuga, and Chambourcin are, among other varieties, are grown there. Another specialty is hand-crafted sparkling wine/champagne.

Most recently Pinnacle Ridge Winery has earned the Best Sparkling and Gold Medals for its 2005 Cuvee Chardonnay and two additional golds, two silvers and a bronze medal at the 2008 Pennsylvania Farm Show. The Wine Society of Pennsylvania in 2007 presented its Excellence in Wine Award for Pinnacle Ridge’s 2005 Pinot Noir and recognized its Cuvee Chardonnay as one of the 10 top wine finalists.

Other major awards include silver and bronze medals in the limited production wines category at the 2007 Los Angeles International Wine & Spirits Competition; nine medals including two golds at the 2007 Keystone Competition; seven medals at the Finger Lakes International Wine Competition; a gold medal and best hybrid for its 2004 Chambourcin Reserve, gold medal and best sparkling wine for its 2005 blanc de blanc as well as two more golds and six additional medals at the 2007 Pennsylvania Farm Show.

So, stop by Pinnacle Ridge’s Festival booth located in the Nochberschaft Haus . Talk to the wine experts and learn more about the excellence of Pinnacle Ridge wines. Each year a special Festival commemorative labeled bottle of wine is offered, and eight to ten wines are available for tasting.

As Brad Knapp says, “We not only celebrate the fruition of the burgeoning wine making culture in Pennsylvania, but the opportunity to continue to provide incredible wines for our customers and the community.”