September 19, 2017

Cold Hardy Grape Documentary Debuts

The short-form documentary "Cold Climate Grapes Uncorked" premiered Saturday, June 14, 2014, at Sovereign Estate Vineyard and Winery in Waconia, Minnesota. The husband-and-wife team of Marcus and Emily Taplin launched a Kickstarter campaign to get funding to write, direct, and produce the documentary.  Emily is a television news reporter in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, while Marcus works for Fox Sports … [Read more...]

Colorado Growing University of Minnesota Grapes

The Minnesota and Wisconsin Grape Growers Associations uncovered an article in the Denver Post today about cold hardy wine grapes being planted in Colorado.  The story says that Marquette, Frontenac and La Crescent, all developed by the University of Minnesota, are being planted in the Grand Valley of  Colorado. The Grand Valley is along the Utah-Colorado border near the city of Grand … [Read more...]

Interpreting the New Minnesota Winery Study

A new Minnesota wine industry study, partially funded by the Northern Grapes Project, is attracting a lot of attention.  Media outlets as far away as San Francisco and Chicago have reported recently about Minnesota wine.  While these reports paint a favorable picture of Minnesota as a wine producer, a deeper interpretation of the study reveals the challenges of maintaining the rapid growth of the … [Read more...]

University of Minnesota Grape Cultivars Increase at the Mid-American Wine Competition

Frontenac Gris is one of the more unique grape cultivars released from the University of Minnesota. It made its debut in 2003 and was first introduced as a separate wine category at the Mid-American Wine Competition in 2011. This new category was added due to an increased interest in Frontenac Gris.The number of Frontenac Gris entries has increased every year. Submissions of the cold climate … [Read more...]

Cold Hardy Grapes Make Vivacious Verjus

The question of what to do with wine grapes from cold climate growing regions has resulted in some wonderful solutions.  The most famous example of ingenuity is the French.  They use the high acid grapes from the coldest grape growing region in their country, Champagne, to make a beverage that is known worldwide.Now a Minnesota grape grower, Chad Stoltenberg, is expanding the use cold … [Read more...]

Marquette Wine Has Pinot In Its Blood

For the most part, the wines that you drink today are made from the same grapes as the wines your grandparents and great-grandparents drank. The great wine grapes of the world have been around for several hundred years, and some of them for much longer than that.For example, the Georgian grape Rkatsiteli is thought by some authorities to date back to 3000 BC, while the Greek grape Limnio was … [Read more...]

Wisconsin Grape and Wine Industry Survey Released

The 2011 Grape and Wine Industry Survey was released recently by the United States Department of Agriculture Statistics Service. The Wisconsin Grape Growers and the Wisconsin Winery Associations also helped with the survey which was mailed during June of 2012. (Midwest Wine Press does not know why the survey is called the "2011 Survey." The information was compiled in 2012 and released in … [Read more...]

Northern Hybrids- A New Class of Grapes

There is no shortage of hybrid grapes or classes of hybrid grapes these days.  French hybrids, German hybrids,  California hybrids, Cornell hybrids, Labrusca hybrids, Riparia hybrids;  the list goes on and on.  However, a new class of hybrids has emerged in the last twenty years or so, grapes we have come to call Northern hybrids.  These grapes are making wine grape growing practical in cold … [Read more...]

Michigan and Minnesota Wine Strategies Diverge

During February, I attended both the Cold Climate Conference in St. Paul and Michigan Grape and Wine Conference in East Lansing.   The "buzz" at both shows was palpable.  In both Minnesota and Michigan, the energy of growing wine industry filled the air with an optimistic aroma.While the mood was similar, the approach of Michigan and Minnesota towards wine is quite different.  Michigan is now … [Read more...]