the flavor of
North S C U P PE R N O N G I S T H E S TAT E ’ S G R E AT G R A P E
They have provided mottled green arbors of shade for
hundreds of years and marked the shifting of the seasons.
They have caused a feud between fourth- and fifth-graders.
They’ve risen up to become a new superfood. And they’ve
motivated chefs to redefine their use. They’re scuppernongs,
and they are firmly rooted in Southern heritage and culture.
It’s amazing how easy it is to strike up a conversation
when it begins with “scuppernong” — at least in North
Carolina. Turns out it might just determine whether you’re a
true Tar Heel or just faking it.
Carolyn Flowers, owner of Eagle Island Produce, is a true
Tar Heel and Southern to the core. She knows that scup-pernongs
are North Carolina’s state fruit and that they come
from the muscadine (pronounced with a long “I,” like wine,
she points out).
The eclectic Eagle Island Produce and Fish Market, on
Scuppernong grapes — North Carolina’s state fruit — grow on vines at the state’s oldest vineyard, Duplin Winery in Rose Hill.
WBM september 2017
PHOTO BY CARMEN LUCAS/FLIKR