The southern colonies bore the heavy burden of unrealistic English expectations. In this sunny, warm land, silk was to be produced and spices grown to diminish the economic importance of the Orient. Grapes and olives were to break dependence on the Continent. John Smith, typically, raised great hopes for wine production: “Except by the rivers and savage habitations, where they are not overshadowed from the sun, they are covered with fruit, though never pruned nor manured. of those hedge grapes we made near twenty gallons of wine, which was like our French British wine, but certainly they would prove good were they well manured.”
The scuppernong, though, never found acceptance as a table wine, being too assertive to marry well with foods. As an aperitif this wine is more acceptable. It also can be used well in cooking—a chicken, duck, or pork roast basted with it will be a rich golden brown and yield a pan full of delicious drippings for a sauce.