Saturday, December 29, 2007

Oliver Winery Visit

Today, Stacy and I took a visit to Bloomington, Indiana to due some wine tasting. First, we visited the Oliver Winery. This winery began as a hobby for Indiana University Law Professor, Bill Oliver in 1959. In 1972, following the inactment of the Indiana Small Winery Act wrote by Professor Oliver, the winery opened to the public. By the end of the 90's, the winery was producing over 100,000 gallons of wine.

During our first visit to Oliver, we found the grounds to be beautifully landscaped. As you can see, the tasting room was very busy. Fortunately, we were able to sneak in and taste a variety of wine. Here's a quick list of what we tried and what we liked
          • Vidal Blanc Sparkling Wine 2006 - A crisp clean sparkler $25 bt
          • Traminette 2006 - A fruity Indiana grape wine $14.15 bt
          • Beanblossom Hard Cider - A crisp apple wine made from Peru apples $ 8.11 bt (My choice for most interesting)
          • Muscatt Canelli 2007 - An exotic pineapple wine with a rich fruity scent. $10 bt (My choice for best taste)
          • Camelot Mead - A light honey wine. $7.55 bt
          • Soft White - Sweet grape wine with rich aromas. $7.55 bt
          • Harvest Flavors Strawberry - An extremely sweet wine with a honey base. $7.55 bt
          • Harvest Flavors Mango - An extremely sweet Mango wine with a honey base. $7.55 bt
Our next stop was at the Butler Winery. Established in 1983, this Winery is the fourth oldest operating winery in Indiana. The grape varieties they grow include: Chambourcin, Chardonel, Vignoles, Cabernet Franc and Vidal. They make their wine in small batches using stainless steel tanks for the fermentation and bulk aging of the majority of our wines. In addition, they use small American Oak barrels for the aging of our Ruby Port and the dry Chambourcin and Chardonel wines. As you can see in the picture, they have won several Indy International awards including an award for their Vineyard Red and their Late Harvest Vignoles in 2006.

During our visit, we tried the Vineyard Rose, Vineyard Red, and the Late Harvest Vignoles which was a 2006 vintage. We also tasted the Blueberry wine, which gives a rich blueberry taste, and the Black Currant wine, which provides a punch of tart savory flavor. Also, the Black Currants are harvested from Plymouth, Indiana. Our favorite was the Indiana White which is made from Indiana Uplands Chardonel and Vignoles. It gives a peachy flavor and was awarded the Silver Medal at the 2007 Indy International. (pictured on left: Butler Vineyards)

Overall, we really enjoyed these two wineries and plan on visiting the additional six South Central Indiana Wineries on the Passport Wine Trail.

If you would like more information on visiting these locations, please visit the following links.

Oliver Winery Bloomington, Indiana

Butler Winery Bloomington, Indiana
Indiana Upland Wine Trail

More Photos of our trip

(front view of the Oliver Winery)

(landscaping at the Oliver Winery)

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