Horton Vineyards

Horton Vineyards
6399 Spotswood Trail
Gordonsville, VA 22942
(800) 877-5533

Hermann, Missouri, is home to Stone Hill Winery, once the second-largest winery in the country. It’s also home to Dennis Horton. He was born there in 1945 and grew up hearing about the official grape of the State of Missouri, the Norton. As an adult, Horton developed a passion for winemaking and kept vines in his backyard. In 1977 he and his wife, Sharon, found themselves in Virginia, where the Norton grape was first cultivated. Twelve years later, they decided to take their hobby to the next level: they started a vineyard. The Hortons devoted the bulk of their acreage to Norton, with cuttings purchased from Dennis’s hometown winery, Stone Hill. Today, Horton Vineyards is credited with the resurgence of the Norton grape in Virginia. The Hortons also pioneered the plantation of Viognier in the region. But Dennis Horton is one part visionary, one part businessman. In addition to his celebration of native, as well as European varietals, Horton produces nine different fruit wines.

Date of interview:

June 16, 2008

Interviewer:

Amy C. Evans

Photographer:

Amy C. Evans

Horton Vineyards - Dennis Horton, owner - Wine in the South
There’s not many states that have a native winemaking grape [like the Norton grape]. And I thought it would behoove the marketing end of the stick to be able to deal with a grape that came from Virginia, made in Virginia, and produces a nice bottle of red wine. And it proved to be successful.
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