An AmpelWHATapher?

Ampelography is one of the funniest sounding words in wine, a field
that’s full of potential puns and double entendres. It means simply, the
study and identification of grapevines. And Lucie Morton is one of this
country’s leading ampelographers. But she’s not just good at
identifying grapevines – Morton identifies and wages war on grapevine
pests and diseases. She is also a revered vineyard consultant here in
the Eastern United States (though she also has clients in California and

Think “revered” is a bit strong for a vineyard consultant? Well, check out my column on Lucie in this week’s Washington Post Food section.
Two of her clients use religious imagery while speaking of her – one
calls her “our Moses leading us from the wilderness” while the other
describes his “Road to Damascus moment” when he tasted a wine from one
of her clients and became a convert to the gospel of high-density
planting. And don’t miss my recommendations of wines produced by some of her local clients.

This entry was posted in Bordeaux, Cabernet Franc, Eastern US, France, Local Wine, Maryland, Religion, Science, Terroir, Virginia, Washington Post, Wine and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to An AmpelWHATapher?

  1. Mark Cochard says:

    Hey Dave, Just to expand a little, Ampelography is the study of grape
    leaf morphology for the identification of grape varieties.
    With the advent of DNA mappping, you would think studying grape leaf
    morhology would go the way of the dinosaur. This not the case. I asked
    Lucie when I met her a couple of years ago, as she was heading up the
    planting of 8 acres at the Hauser Estate in PA, if ampelograhy was still
    in use, She responded absolutely mainly going to vineyards to help
    growers identify what is actually growing in their vineyards. I belive
    she metioned trips to NZ and OZ doing this.

  2. Thanks for the elucidation, Mark! Or was that an e-lucie-dation?

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