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By Whitney Sommers
We began today with a visit to Crown Valley Winery in Sainte Genevieve, Mo. It is one of Missouri’s largest winery and by far the largest one of our tour.
From the time we pulled into the parking lot, (the first real parking lot we have encountered) it was evident that this winery would be a much different environment from the others we had visited.
The buildings were larger. The barrel room was larger. The selection of wines was larger. And the tasting portions, themselves weren’t small either. It was a completely different feel from the other wineries.
Still, the wine production system at Crown Valley followed the same general cycle as the other wineries with more equipment and tanks.
Winemaker and native South African, Al Dippenyaar, spoke with us about some of the differences of making wine in Missouri as opposed to other areas of the world particularly the climate.
“No matter what you plan, no day is ever what you planned,” Dippenyaar said. “We got frost, snow, lightning, anything you can imagine.”
Aside from the winery, Crown Valley also has a brewery, distillery, cattle and bison, restaurants and even a tiger sanctuary, which we sadly didn’t have time to visit.
Overall, Dippenyaar said the most important thing to remember about wine is, “If you like it, you drink it.”
About the class
Students in the Wine Country Writing class, taught by Nina Furstenau, will be getting a chance to examine not only wine culture and how to write about it, but also how wine is produced and agricultural issues in the vineyard. During this four-day field reporting trip to Missouri wineries in the Ste. Genevieve, Augusta and Hermann areas, students will see A&K Cooperage in Higbee, watch Missouri oak barrels being produced, talk with winemakers and vineyard managers, and learn directly from experts in the field. Join the class with their blog series as they meet the people behind the Missouri wine industry.
- Wine Country Series: Wine and biscotti at Cave Vineyard
- Wine Country Series: Jerry Smith of River Ridge Winery
- Wine Country Series: Charleville Vineyard and Brewery
- Wine Country Series: Montelle Winery
- Wine Country Series: Adam Puchta Winery is 157 Years Strong
- Wine Country Series: A unique wine tasting at Crown Valley Winery
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