Little did I know, seven years ago, in 2005, when I sat down to prepare the petition to establish the new Wisconsin Ledge AVA for northeast Wisconsin, that I would end up with a 200-page document, over 100 exhibits, and just over 2500 hours of invested time.
States other than California, Washington, and Oregon have often struggled for identity, recognition, and acceptance for their oft-maligned winemaking efforts. Midwestern wineries have struggled in some states and flourished in others.
The heritage of the grapes that make our favorite wines has always been European, but will it remain so? Are there currently legitimate rivals to the vinifera monopoly that has ruled our palates? “Drink American” could be the slogan for the United States’ fairly recent class of vanguard winemakers and vintners declaring that there are.