[Fig. 8(1)] In his autobiography, Mark Twain wrote about "a wild grape of promising sort" that grew on the vast estate his father had purchased on the Cumberland Plateau. The grape was muscadine (Vitis rotundifolia), and in 1980 a native of the region, Fay Wheeler, and his wife, Kathy, established Tennessee's first licensed winery in this area this century. Today the winery produces limited quantities of muscadine wine, muscadine champagne, and several other varieties of wine. Because of the scarcity of wild muscadine grapes, the winery is sometimes sold out, so it's wise to call ahead if you have your heart set on sampling this particular fruit of the vine.
Highland Manor continues its production of award-winning wines. Visitors are invited to tour the winery, view the wine-making process, and sample the finished products. Picnic areas on the grounds offer the opportunity for an al fresco lunch, complete with the wine of your choice.