Definition - What does Vitis Riparia mean?
Vitis riparia is the Latin name for the Riparia grape which is native to North America. The grape is extremely hardy and known for its resistance to frost, mildew and rot. It is also phylloxera resistant. These are the reasons why many vintners choose the variety as a rootstock for grafting on Vitis vinifera vines.
WineFrog explains Vitis Riparia
Vitis Riparia is a wild grape known for having a long life cycle compared to other grape species. This is one of the reasons why you can find the grape vines climbing on some of the tallest trees of the forest.
While it is mainly utilized as a vine for rootstock it is also a grape which is also used for hybridizing. Unlike the Vitis labrusca species known for producing grapes with a wild and "foxy" character, Vitis riparia grows juicy black grapes that are edible and even vinous in flavor. This is an attractive quality desired when crossing the grape with other species.