Enrique Pallares, the president of Casa Carmen, is quick to use the word “nano” rather than “micro” in talking about the family’s new winery less than a mile as the crow flies from Chestertown. And for this student of philosophy, who is just finishing up his Ph.D. dissertation at Catholic University, he likes to be precise in the language he uses.
And a “nano winery” seems like the correct term as you look over Carmen’s one acre of grapes now growing next to Kent County’s old Almshouse and Enrique and his wife’s newly restored farmhouse. Enrique intentionally wants to keep his business (which he shares with his brother and sister as well as father as consultant) as small as possible to keep alive a tradition of family community wineries where the focus is entirely local.
With a family history in Ecuador, and a father’s love of Spanish wine, Enrique, and brother Felipe, both international professional polo players before settling on the Mid-Shore, have just begun as the winery plans to move away from the often repeated mistake of competing with California wines. They envision a new approach that takes into account the Eastern Shore’s remarkable soil to offer unique local blends that also carry on the tradition of a community winery.
The Spy spent some time with Enrique last week to understand more fully the business plan.
This video is approximately five minutes in length. For more information about Casa Carmen please go here