Facts about Minnesota Wine
Minnesota – a state synonymous with frigid weather, ice fishing and ten thousand lakes. But did you know that the North Star State is also one of America’s fastest growing wine regions? With its sub zero temperatures and harsh northern climate, you’d think it would be the last place where one would want to grow grapes. However, much like the early German and Scandinavian settlers who populated the state, Minnesota’s wine industry shares that same pioneer spirit of defying the odds while blazing our own distinct path.
Thanks to the University of Minnesota working alongside local wineries, several grape varieties have been created to withstand the brutal winter while producing some very promising wines. For example, Frontenac gris, a sweet white similar to Riesling but with traces of honey crisp apple and citrus is extremely popular across the state. Another is Marquette, a dry red with a spicy, fruity finish that is comparable to pinot noir.
Since receiving state funds in the 1980s, Minnesota has come a long way in building a reputation for both quality and excellence. And here are some interesting facts about our booming wine industry:
- In 2009, 93,000 gallons of wine was produced in Minnesota.
- By 2010, there were over 1500 acres of vineyards throughout the state.
- This year, vintners are projected to produce more than $11,250,000 of wine.
(Source: Minnesota Grape Growers Association)
The Minneapolis/St. Paul Branch of the International Wine & Food Society, invites you to see what our state has to offer by sampling a Prairie Star, La Crescent, Saint Croix or Louise Swenson and by touring the wine trails of Minnesota whenever you are in town! For more information on Minnesota vineyards and wine tours, visit minnesotagrown.com.