Know Your Grapes #1: Chambourcin
This series focuses on grapes grown across the country beyond the usual vitis viniferia suspects.
One of the most widely planted grapes in the Midwest and beyond, Chambourcin is just one of the many offspring of vitis vinifera crossed with more hardy American stock bred. Like its parent Chancellor, it is full-flavored and able to survive Midwest winters and tolerate summer humidity. Aromatic, but with lower tannins and body, it is similar in mouthfeel to Pinot Noir, thus often filling a winery's offerings in the "medium body red" spot. Usually aged in oak.
Where Chambourcin often shines is as a rosé offering. Try sampling a winery's red and rosé Chambourcin and see which you prefer.
Notable examples of wineries who produce consistently good vintages of Chambourcin: