New Jersey Wineries: Working Dog Winery in Robbinsville

Looking for another New Jersey winery to visit last weekend presented me with a lot of choices, but I narrowed it down to one the moment I saw the name: Working Dog Winery, in Robbinsville. As someone who volunteers at the Sammy’s Hope Animal Shelter in Sayreville on weekends, the winery’s name and logo were already enough to get me there. A couple days before, I’d emailed to ask if I could meet the winemaker and perhaps get a tour. Lo and behold, a very genial guy named Mark Carduner called me, said he was the winemaker and would be glad to host me. And when I walked in, he was the first person I saw, at the front of…

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Free the Garden State Grapes!

New Jersey is the fifth largest state in the union for wine consumption (source: Adams Wine Handbook 2007) but one of only 13 states that continue to ban winery to consumer shipments. More than 80% of the U.S. population already has access to direct shipments of wine and New Jersey residents should, too. BUT two bills, NJ Assembly Bill 1702 and NJ Senate Bill 766, may pave the way for dramatically improving access to wines from across the U.S.  AB1702 is identical to SB766, which passed the Senate on March 11, 2010. Both bills are based on the model direct shipping bill, now the legislative standard used by most U.S. states for legal, regulated direct-to-consumer shipments of wine.  These laws satisfy consumer demand and…

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Get Your Crush On…In New Jersey!

Who knew? Here in the most densely populated state in the union, we seem to have more "make on premises", Do-it-Yourself, hands-on winemaking shops than Doan has pills. So if you want to try your hand at making wine, and get a little professional advice and support in the process, New Jersey is the place to be. We're more than just the turnpike, the highest property taxes in the nation and mandatory full-service gas stations, you know! Anyway, two of these places I know well - California WineWorks up in Ramsay, and The Vintner's Circle in both Hackettstown and Whippany, as well as a Pennsylvania location. I've visited another, Grape Expectations in Dayton, NJ, and all of them have happy…

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