10 Must Visit Illinois Wineries
Illinois Winery Road Trip
Some facts you need to know about Illinois Wine: it has more than 100 wineries, over 450 vineyards, 1100 grape producing acres, and at least 100 miles of wine trails. Wow! Check out this Best Of Wine Channel TV video on Illinois Wine with host Jessica Altieri.
Here are a few highlights from our visit with some of the top wine producers in the Land of Lincoln:
Wine that tastes delicious and comes with a great story is something I’m always looking for, and I happened to find just that with Alto Vineyards in Illinois. We met with Elissa from Alto Vineyards at the 3rd Annual Art of Illinois Wine Festival in Springfield, Illinois. Alto is one of the oldest wineries in Southern Illinois, and they’ve been going strong for over 20 years. Elissa informed me that Alto grows all of their varieties in Illinois soil and they’re known for their French American hybrid wines; which is in contrast to typical crossings between grape varieties of the same species, typically Vitis Vinifera, the European grapevine and classic varietals you may know such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Chardonnay. Chambourcin is their best selling dry red wine, similar to a drier Cabernet with lush plum and blackberry notes, and is around $18.
We’re not sure if Andy Warhol was a big wine drinker, but if he saw Illinois River Winery’s wine labels I’m sure he’d be a big fan. We met with Nancy Sabatini, Manager of Social Media for the IL River Winery, at the 3rd Annual Art of Illinois Wine Festival . We had tweeted before the event, so I was eager to meet a fellow twitter friend and try some IL wine! We met with Nancy Sabatini, Manager of Social Media for the IL River Winery, at the 3rd Annual Art of Illinois Wine Festival . We had tweeted before the event, so I was eager to meet a fellow twitter friend and try some IL wine! The IL River Winery was founded in 1988 by Gregg Kane, who’s hopes of spreading artistic quality throughout the winery has proved very successful . One wine I enjoyed very much was their First Blush, which had the Warhol inspired label and claims to have won the “Best Blush in America Award.” Sabatini discussed how the winery has an Artist in Residence Program which among many things, helps to promote IL art and design some of their wine labels.