Pretty much everyone and their mom has posted this article by Eric Asimov, featuring Michael Maller's smiling face behind the bar at Mateo (behind the NYT semi-paywall again). It's not so much about NC wine, which isn't even mentioned. It's about our food and wine culture here in Durham and the Triangle, one that has taken off like a rocket in the past 30 years. I love it.
But I did feel a little sad that our own beer and winemaking areas aren't given more notice (that's not going to be Asimov's focus for this article in the NYT, so no criticism to him). All legal wine and beer production in the country had to start from scratch after Prohibition was over in 1933, but the Great Depression and WWII kept the industry down until the 40s. When it did, it was largely the industrial producers—the ones who could serve an entire country—who took off. A lot of smaller rivals were left behind in the dirt. They stayed behind. Not too long ago, Weeping Radish had a brewery off the corner of Duke and Morgan Street. They didn't make it (which may have had more to do with their not-so good restaurant than anything). Wineries like Duplin Wines have been going since the 70s, but with their focus on inexpensive wines appealing to what they feel are local tastes, they're not likely to see much more than local recognition.
But it's better now. Durham itself has three breweries, and seems to have no problem supporting them all; North Carolina has over 60 breweries and brewpubs. Wineries are doing well too, with three American Viticultural Areas currently recognized by (and I can't believe I'm saying this this way) the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms. The AVAs are all west of us, near the Yadkin River valley, but wine and beer are made all over the state. So, just in case you can't find a North Carolina producer of beer or wine:
The beer map has a list of breweries on it. For lists of North Carolina wineries, you'll need to pull down a menu or two from near the top of the page. But for both beer and wine, find someone in the state, try them, and see if you like them. When you find a match, tell us about it, will you? :)