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The story behind the vineyard

Since 1835...

Mallow Run is the product of years of hard work by John Richardson and his son, Bill, and Bill’s wife, Laura. John grew up on the farm, moved away to teach school for 35 years, and then retired back on the farm with the intent of growing grapes to supply other Indiana wineries.

Family-owned boutique winery with years of experience and knowledge.

Bill, who grew up dreaming of living on the farm, settled into the original Mallow/Richardson home after graduating from Purdue with a degree in Agriculture. Bill met Laura (Emerson) while playing in the Carmel Symphony and with a shared love for music, wine, and the farm, they married in 2005.

The History

The first grapes were planted in 2000, with more to follow in subsequent years. Vineyards now cover nearly seven acres of the family’s 600-acre farm. On the remainder, corn, soybeans, and cattle are still raised. With expanding vineyards taking root, an aging barn with great potential, and the desire to share their love of fine wines, the decision was quickly made to open a own winery right here on the farm.

On September 3rd, 2005, the dream was realized and the tasting room opened to the public.

The Family

Mallow Run is a stream whose waters wind their way through our family farm and flow past the winery on the way to the White River. Its namesake, George Mallow, settled this farm in 1835 and some time after built the barn where the tasting room is now located. Seven generations later, his family still lives on the farm and wishes to share their corner of the world with you!

The Vineyard

Mallow Run now has nearly seven acres of grapes, including 3 1/2 acres planted in 2016 at The Sycamore at Mallow Run. We grow American and Hybrid varieties which are more tolerant of cold Indiana winters than more recognizable vinifera varieties, such as Merlot or Chardonnay. These hybrids are essentially crosses of native varieties that thrive in our climate with those vinifera varieties that are well known for high quality wines. The end result is hopefully a new variety with the best traits of each parent. Examples include Corot Noir, a distant relative of Grenache and Mourvedre, and Brianna, which has Moscato-type grapes in its DNA. In addition to those two, we also grow Catawba, Steuben, Swenson White, and LaCrosse.

The Care

Each season starts with winter pruning, where we remove most of the previous year’s growth and attempt to determine what the next year’s growth and crop will be. The vines come out of their winter slumber around mid- to late April. This is an exciting time in the vineyard as buds swell and break open into new shoots. This is also a dangerous time for the tender young shoots as a chilling frost in April is always a threat.

Throughout the summer, each shoot will race to produce two to three clusters of grapes and many leaves which, through photosynthesis, will provide food for the plant and sugar for the grapes. Shoots often grow 10 feet long in a summer, and sometimes up to 20 or more feet! Harvest is the culmination of the year’s hard work and a time for celebration.

Harvest begins in August for some varieties and stretches until October for others. Warm and dry days are perfect for ripening the grapes. Three to six tons of only the ripest grapes are hand harvested from each acre and carefully processed into each year’s vintage.

On your next visit, enjoy a glass of wine, take a stroll through the vines, and feel the connection between the wine in your hand and soil beneath your feet.

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