Wisconsin Wineries-Next Napa Valley!
First it was France, followed by Napa Valley and later New Jersey; could Wisconsin wineries be the next Napa Valley? If you follow experts who test wine, Wisconsin wineries could most definitely be the next Napa Valley.
According to blind tasting studies even the experts can’t tell the difference between a $725 bottle of wine and a $70 bottle of wine. These results raise an obvious question: if most people can’t tell the difference between Château Mouton Rothschild retail $725 and Heritage BDX $70, then why do we splurge on premiers crus? Why not drink wine from Wisconsin grapes instead? It seems like a clear waste of money.
Cold climate grapes and wines are the base of a growing viticulture and wine industry in Wisconsin Wineries. At Cold Country Vines & Wines, we don’t attempt to imitate the wines of France or Napa Valley. We appeal to wine lovers who seek a hidden gem – rather than a familiar label. Wine lovers who trust their own taste – rather than a sommelier’s. Individuals, couples and friends who prefer to take the road less traveled, knowing the journey – and destination – are part of the experience.
Grapes have always grown in the Midwest; wild grapes were used for the table and for juice. Many of the venifera varieties of wine grapes would grow in the Upper Midwest but they could not withstand the cold winters. In 1985 the University of Minnesota (U of MN) began a cold climate wine grape breeding program. In 1996 they introduced Frontenac, now planted in the Midwest, New England and Quebec. Elmer Swenson, in conjunction with the U of MN, also bred cold climate grapes.
A discussion of cold climate grape varieties would not be complete without mentioning the work of Elmer Swenson. Elmer Swenson (12 December 1913 – 24 December 2004) was a pioneering grape breeder from Osceola, WI, who introduced a number of new cultivars, effectively revolutionizing grape growing in the Upper Midwest of the United States and other cold and short-seasoned regions.
Patented Cultivars Developed by Elmer Swenson:
St. Croix, St. Pepin, La Crosse, Espirit, Edelweiss, Swenson Red, and Kay Gray among others.
A few Hybrid grape varieties Co-released with University of Minnesota: Frontenac, Marquette, and La Crescent.
Could Wisconsin Wineries be the next Napa Valley?
You be the judge? At Cold Country Vines & Wines grapes grown on our 15 acre vineyard set on our 35 acre land are:
- La Crescent
- Marechal Foch
- Frontenac Gris
- Petite Pearl
- Louise Swenson
- Frontenac Blanc
Stop out for our Grand Opening on May 24 &25 and enjoy the Wisconsin wine tasting experience!
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Friday10:00am - 5:00pm
Saturday10:00am - 5:00pm
Sunday12:00pm - 5:00pm
Cold Country Vines & Wines
Kewaunee, WI 54216