The Great 8 of Wine Gifts

We asked Missouri wine enthusiasts for their favorite holiday wine gifts, and they delivered.  We compiled the ultimate list of Missouri wine gifts for family and friends. Put these great gifts on your list, check it twice and be sure to be nice!

  1. By the bottle – The greatest gifts can certainly be the ones you sip. Our survey results say; wine is one of the best gifts to receive as a wine aficionado. Whether it’s their favorite bottle, a new Missouri varietal to taste, a curated tasting flight or even a wine club subscription, wine is a great option. Now, wrap up a bottle and give it to someone you care about. 
  2. Give glasses – Glassware also makes a great gift. Glasses can be personalized to make your gift even more unique. Etched, monogrammed, painted or even hand-blown artisan — glassware comes in many giftable options. Glassware doesn’t even have to be glass. For your friends who love to picnic, gift them non-breakable wine tumblers for their next outing.
  3. Wine supplies – Wine supplies are always a great gift too. Decanters, bottle openers, vacuum sealers, foil cutters, bottle stoppers and more — these are the wine gifts that keep giving because they keep the wine tasting fresh and its best.
  4. Missouri wine wearables – Hats, shirts, hoodies and more make a fun gift for wine lovers. From elegant wine country logos to fun, quirky graphic tees, we love to wear Missouri wine gear. Give friends and family gear from their favorite Missouri winery so they can wear their memories on their sleeve.
  5. Experience wine country – Curate an unforgettable experience for the wine lover on your list. Tickets to wine trail events or wine dinners, reservations at a bed-and-breakfast in wine country or a winery with lodging are all great gifts that create even better memories.
  6. Pack it up – For Missouri wine lovers who love to picnic or travel, the perfect gift is tote-able. Wine bags, coolers, carriers and portable bottle chillers help folks pack their favorite Missouri wine. While a new picnic blanket or basket paired with a cheese or cutting board is excellent for those who love to picnic in wine country.
  7. At home – Home is where the wine lives. Make wine storage a breeze with a wine fridge or wine rack to showcase their collection. Bar towels and wine-worthy decorations make beautiful gifts to dazzle wine lovers during the holiday season and beyond.
  8. Read all about it – Lastly, look into books for our wine enthusiasts who love to read: tasting guides, wine recipes, history of wine country and even wine magazine subscriptions.

If you can’t narrow down the list, you don’t have to. Create your own gift basket personalized to your wine lover’s favorite things. The options are endless — wine, cheese and chocolate make a fabulous pairing combination. Consider adding a gift certificate to their favorite winery or local wine shop. Most Missouri wineries have a selection of wine themed items in their tasting rooms making it easy to shop local this season.

Share your favorite wine gifts with us on social media at #missouriwine and @missourwine.

Remembering Repeal Day

The Missouri wine industry still feels the impact of Prohibition, even a century later. Pre-prohibition production numbers exceed what we make today, yet quality can still be found all over the Show Me State. It is inspiring, yet disappointing to know what Missouri wines could have been without the setback of Prohibition. Not only did it decimate the wine and grape industry, but it also stifled an iconic part of Missouri’s identity. Today, we celebrate the anniversary of the end of the 13-year-long Eighteenth Amendment “Prohibition of Liquor” to the United States Constitution. The Twenty-First Amendment was ratified on December 5, 1933, allowing wine, spirits and alcoholic beverages to legally enter society in the U.S. again.

from The Advertiser-Courier of Hermann, Missouri

The Missouri wine industry has been an economic force in the state since the 1830s and continued into the turn of the century. Historical production data is often regionalized. However, statewide production figures made public in 1906 by the State Labor Bureau provide a strong visualization: “enough wine was made in and shipped from Missouri last year to float a battleship of 13,000 tons.” Not only is this industry a huge part of the culture, but also legendary in the state’s agriculture industry. Prohibition created obstacles the state had to overcome for decades after Prohibition ended. Repeal Day is an important and memorable one for the wine and grape industry in Missouri to continue its legacy for the future.

Prohibition was enacted during a pivotal time in history. Crime and corruption were on the rise. Many people were being jailed or imprisoned for acts associated with alcohol consumption. Social issues in the home were often credited to overconsumption. Churches in New York and Massachusetts pledged abstinence to alcohol as early as 1800, but increased greatly moving westward over the next half-century into a national movement. The Temperance Movement (defined as the practice of drinking little or no alcohol) became well-known to many Americans. The Women's Christian Temperance Union, founded in 1874, and the Anti-Saloon League were pivotal forces across the nation that desperately wanted a change in society. Activists for the movement, such as Carry Nation, were gaining popularity and awareness. Nation was notorious for demolishing barrooms with a hatchet, heated by her past experience of her former husband’s alcoholism. Although these groups started this movement a century prior, this unique time in history created the perfect storm for the citizens and congress to evaluate this issue.

The neighboring state of Kansas enacted a state-wide prohibition in 1881. Nation, a resident of Kansas, joined the movement in 1890 after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to favor sales and importing “original packages” from distributors from other states to saloons. Although it was illegal, saloons were still flourishing from this exception. The Temperance Movement had a significant influence on the attitudes of surrounding states and their citizens, such as Missourians, and the impact lasted for years and generations of people beyond the repeal of the Eighteenth Amendment.

These two decades prior to enacting the Amendment were critical. The U.S. Constitution experienced the most change between 1913-1919, since the Bill of Rights, including direct election of senators, women’s suffrage and federal income tax. This created options for discussion and large changes on a national level. Federal income tax was established by the Sixteenth Amendment in 1913, ending the government’s previous large source of income gathered from taxing alcohol. This change made Prohibition achievable without harming government funding. Several political groups saw the opportunity and seized it.

According to Daniel Okrent, American writer and editor, in his research findings regarding the enactment and repeal of the Amendment, the joint power of several political groups during that time allowed for this change. He evaluated that their agendas were beyond Prohibition alone, yet all intersected:

“Five distinct, if occasionally overlapping, components made up this unspoken coalition: racists, progressives, suffragists, populists (whose ranks included a small socialist auxiliary), and nativists. Adherents of each group may have been opposed to alcohol for its own sake, but used the Prohibition impulse to advance ideologies and causes that had little to do with it.”

Not all Missourians were in favor of the repeal of Prohibition. (August 17, 1944 The Gasconade County Republican)

Although President Woodrow Wilson vetoed the bill, the House of Representatives and the Senate chose to override his veto. The Volstead Act (also known as National Prohibition Act) was passed October 28, 1919 and went into effect on January 17, 1920. At that time, 48 of Missouri’s 114 counties were home to wineries. Now, they were home to only one in St. Louis, a group of Jesuits who were producing wine for sacramental purposes, St. Stanislaus Novitiate. All for-profit wineries were forced to close.

U.S. Treasury Department was tasked with enacting the restrictions surrounding which “intoxicating liquors” were forbidden, with the exception of medical or religious purposes. This new act was difficult to enforce. Perhaps the most notable details from Prohibition are recalled for the misdeeds that arose such as “bootlegging” and other insidious activity to gain higher profit from illegal sales. Not only alcohol trends were changed, the U.S. began collecting a five percent tax on sugar products. In fact, instead of having an alcoholic drink at dinner, it was suggested to enjoy candy now instead.

Prohibition has famously been called “The Noble Experiment.” Unfortunately, due to the political motives used to enact it, it is believed that it caused more social harm than good. Prohibition certainly condemned the lifestyles of marginalized groups, including those of certain races or newly immigrated citizens. Although it was recorded that “arrests for public drunkenness and disorderly conduct declined 50 percent between 1916 and 1922,” violence increased due to the crime and lucrative business opportunities created by the void.

These political impulses affected the livelihood of wineries and other small businesses across the nation. Only a few vineyards were preserved in Missouri for religious purposes. Vines were dramatically ripped from their roots. Casks and barrels, filled with years of hard work, were painfully emptied into the streets and rivers to vacate any possibility of being incriminated. This wounded not only grape growers and their enterprises, but also significantly affected communities and residents who relied on the grape and wine industry as a source of income. Morale lowered and lifestyles were greatly impacted by this change to the nation.

Thirteen long years passed and Americans became thirsty for a change. President Franklin D. Roosevelt announced the end of Prohibition on December 5th of 1933. The Twenty-First Amendment was enacted, repealing the Eighteenth Amendment. The U.S. Constitution has been formally amended 27 times - what makes the Twenty-First amendment unique is that it is the only instance where it repeals a previous amendment. Missourians celebrated this news as the clock turned 12:01 on April 7, 1934, when the repeal went into effect.

Although the national prohibition ended in 1933, many states kept local prohibition laws in place. Kansas didn’t repeal their statewide prohibition until 1948. Mississippi was the last state to repeal in 1966. Some repealed, yet kept strict laws for production, sales, importing and exporting. This remaining restriction kept it hard for wineries to grow and produce for-profit. Missouri experienced this adversity for many years. These restrictions are credited for the growth struggles experienced for decades following the repeal.

The Missouri grape and wine industry was reinvigorated in the 1960s and 1970s by two Missouri families: the Hofherrs of St. James Winery in St. James and the Helds of Stone Hill Winery in Hermann. These families experienced these detrimental limitations firsthand. To grow the opportunities for wineries across the state, the Missouri Wine and Grape Advisory Board was created. This board later became the Missouri Wine and Grape Board, established with help from a state tax in 1980. The nation’s first American Viticultural Area (AVA) was presented to Augusta 1980 as well, establishing the historical footprint Missouri has on winemaking in America. The Missouri Wine and Grape Board supports more than 125 wineries across the state today with marketing and research efforts. These efforts support the awareness of Missouri’s wine and grape history and legacy, while also creating new and dynamic ways to propel Missouri wines into the future.

Cheers to Repeal Day! Experience quality and elevate your experience by exploring Missouri wine country. The historical gems to uncover are endless! Follow us on social media at @missouriwine or #missouriwine for more content and history.

H Levels

 

H1 - This is H1. MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 40px. Line height 48px.

H2 - This is H2.  MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 24px. Line height 34px.

H3 - This is H3. MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 28px. Line height 34px.

H4 - This is H4.  MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 24px. Line height 29px.

H5 - This is H5. MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 20px. Line height 24px.  Forces all caps.

 

H6 - This is H6. MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 16px. Line height 19px.  Forces all caps.

 

H Levels

 

H1 - This is H1. MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 40px. Line height 48px.

H2 - This is H2.  MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 24px. Line height 34px.

H3 - This is H3. MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 28px. Line height 34px.

H4 - This is H4.  MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 24px. Line height 29px.

H5 - This is H5. MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 20px. Line height 24px.  Forces all caps.

 

H6 - This is H6. MS-Bold - 500.  Weight 500.  Size 20px. Line height 24px.  Forces all caps.

 

Traminette Chicken Fettucine Alfredo

A splash of Missouri Traminette brightens up creamy chicken Fettuccine Alfredo. It lends its light citrus flavors, acidity and hint of spice to this dish’s salty and savory dairy elements, like parmesan cheese and heavy cream. Together, alfredo sauce and Traminette make the perfect pairing — in just 30 minutes.

Ingredients

2 chicken breasts, halved into four thin filets

Garlic salt to taste

3 tbsp butter

1 medium onion chopped (1/2c)

4 cloves of garlic (or equivalent minced garlic or garlic paste)

1/3c Missouri Traminette wine

1 2/3c heavy cream

1c grated parmesan

Black pepper to taste (or red pepper flakes if you prefer)

1/2 box Fettucine pasta

1 serving spoon of pasta water

 

Instructions

  1. Half the chicken breasts lengthwise to make thin filets. Pat chicken dry and season both sides generously with garlic salt.
  2. Add water to a pot for pasta, salt water if desired and begin to bring to a boil for pasta.
  3. Heat large sauté pan over medium-high heat and melt 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter in pan before adding chicken.
  4. Cook chicken filets in pan until fully cooked — approximately 4-8 minutes per side, depending on the thickness.
  5. Remove chicken from pan and set aside to rest.
  6. Add Fettucine noodles to pot of boiling water and prepare according to the package instructions.
  7. Add 1 1/2 more tablespoons of butter and onions to sauté pan where you cooked the chicken. Sweat the onions until they begin to turn translucent.
  8. Add the garlic and heat until it becomes aromatic, being careful not to burn it.

Deglaze the pan with a 1/3 cup of Missouri Traminette wine. Don’t worry if the mixture looks brown. The wine is releasing all the chicken fond and butter flavor that has been building in the pan. Bring to a simmer to let the wine cook off slightly before adding the heavy cream.

  1. When the wine/cream mixture begins to simmer, slowly begin adding the cheese until it is all melted and incorporated into the sauce. Add black pepper or chili flakes to taste.
  2. Ladle a spoonful of pasta water into the sauce to make it glossy and smooth.
  3. Drain the pasta.
  4. Toss some sauce with the noodles and top each portion with chicken.
  5. Garnish with herbs or extra parmesan cheese.
  6. Serve & enjoy! 

Try this easy and delicious recipe and let us know what you think. Tag us on social media with @missouriwine and #missouriwine and share! 

 

Bottles of holiday cheer

 

Handmade and holidays go hand-in-hand. This holiday season, upcycle some empty bottles into masterpieces for your mantel, cheerful centerpieces for your table or a festive addition to your holiday decorating. This easy craft is so fun can be enjoyed by the whole family and will make certainly make the perfect gifts.

What you will need

Clean, empty bottles from your favorite Missouri wine (colored bottles look very festive)

Dish soap and rubbing alcohol

Acrylic paints

Paint brushes

Brush on sealant

Battery-powered lights, which will fit into the bottle

Holiday ribbon (optional)

Step 1: Scrub-a-dub

Acrylic paints are easy to use and easy to paint, but unless the surface of your glass is immaculate, it may not stick. That makes it essential to have a clean surface before you start painting. Wash the bottles thoroughly with dish soap to remove your labels, and then wipe clean with rubbing alcohol to remove any fingerprints or residue before they dry completely.

Step 2: Load your brush and start painting

Just pick up a brush and start painting. Try painting simple snowmen because they are just three circles. This holiday craft is only limited by your imagination. Paint Santa, his reindeer, trimmings on a tree, a winter wonderland or anything else your heart desires. If you’re set on the snowmen, here is your how-to:

  • With a medium size brush, pick up a small amount of white paint. Thinly paint three circles stacked on one another, with the smallest circle at the top and the largest at the bottom, to make a snowman shape. Add some white paint at the base of your snowman for snow. (Note: if this layer looks patchy or if you can see through it, don’t worry, it’s just the base layer.)
  • Grab a small, detail brush and dip it in the white paint. Thinly paint the details you’d like to add to your snowman, such as arms, a scarf, a hat, etc. This thin layer of white paint serves as a primer or base for the colors you’ll add to your art, making the brighter colors easier to see and more vibrant.
  • Now, let’s add colors. Start with the snowman and your medium brush and repaint all your snowman shapes white until you can no longer see the bottle through your artwork. Once the white looks good, mix a little bit of a darker color, such as black or blue, with white. This color will be the shadow. Pick one side of your snowman shape to be in the shadow and paint around the side and halfway across the bottom of that shade. Blend this color into the white background for a more natural shadow.
  • Bring your snowman to life by using the detail brush to paint the finer details like its arms, scarf, nose, etc. Try paint pens if you’re worried about painting fine details with a brush. If you’re having a great time making your snowman unique, try adding shadows and shading to your smaller details for added dimension.
  • Have fun, and remember that acrylic paint can be scraped off of the glass once it is dry before a sealant is applied, which brings us to the next step.

Step 3: Seal it

Since paint can be removed from the glass, we recommend you seal your artwork with a brush-on sealant to protect the finished bottle.

Step 4: Light it up

Drop the small, battery-powered lights into your decorated bottle for extra holiday sparkle. For added flair, adorn the neck of the bottle with ribbons or ornaments.

Step 5: Decorate, gift and enjoy

Use these beautiful bottles to make the holiday season a little more festive. Decorate with them, give them as gifts, or place them in your favorite spot to add a little light and holiday cheer!

Share your wine bottle designs or other repurposing ideas with us by tagging #missouriwine and @missourwine on social media.

 

Favorite reasons to visit wine country

 

The results are in! We asked you to rank your favorite reasons to visit Missouri wineries. Here’s your top six reasons to sip wine in the Show Me State and more.

1. Quality Wines

Missouri wineries offer wines for every palate. From sweet to dry and everything in between. Delve into some of Missouri’s best-known varietals or taste some of the award-winning wines from the annual Governor’s Cup competition.

2. Winery views & scenic drives

With more than 125 wineries and vineyards across the state, there is no shortage of scenery to explore and enjoy while traveling. Missouri’s unique terroir provides its wines with unique flavor profiles, while the landscape offers stunning vistas and scenic drives. Explore blufftop overlooks, caves, historic landmarks, rolling vineyards and more. Missouri’s wineries and vineyards offer some of the best sights the state has to offer. Learn more about that makes each of Missouri’s American Viticultural Areas (AVAs) unique and why you should visit each region in person.

3. Visiting with friends

Speaking of visiting, Missouri wine country is the perfect outing for friends. With ten ready-made Missouri wine country trip planners available, let us help you plan your next outing. The best sip of Missouri wine is one shared with friends. Whether you're wanting to plan a weekend get-away with your besties or just meet up at your local winery for a quick sip, Missouri wineries offer the perfect gathering place.

4. Foodie Favorites

Food and wine are the perfect pairing and many Missouri wineries offer their own in-house cuisines for patrons to enjoy. Contact the winery you plan to visit or visit their website to see if they offer an in-house menu or if you can pack a picnic. Either way, pairing some new or favorite foods with a Missouri wine only adds to the

5. Festivals, entertainment, live music and other events

Missouri wine country has things to do year-round. Elevate your experience by attending one of the many festivals or wine walks, live music events, art shows and wine tastings. Keep up to date on upcoming events on the calendar. Follow your favorite Missouri wineries on social media as well to keep track of any upcoming holiday events.

6. And more…

There are countless reasons to enjoy Missouri wine country. Don’t just take our word for it, listen to the reasons these survey respondents love Missouri wineries!

  • "Quality B&Bs like Hermann Hill. Ten years ago, I Google searched 'bed and breakfasts near wineries in the Midwest' and Hermann, Missouri, popped up. We now have a yearly trip to enjoy wineries in various areas in addition to Hermann," Debbie says.
  • "We love the atmosphere of the wineries and the chance to visit with the owners and winemakers," Linda says.
  • "To get away and relax," Beverly says.
  • "I am a mystery author and will be setting a novel in Missouri wine country," Mary says.

Be sure to sign up for our newsletter and follow us on social media so you can share your input in our next survey. Tag us with #missouriwine and @missouriwine as you enjoy these tips.

 

Chambourcin: The Gold for your Glass this Season

Delight in this medium-bodied red wine this November. We celebrate Chambourcin during this time each fall and rightfully so. The Chambourcin varietal is the second-most grown grape across the state. Not only is it enjoyed by seasoned wine enthusiasts, but also by new palates as an introductory red wine or transitioning to bolder wines for the colder weather.

This year’s 2022 Missouri Governor’s Cup was awarded to Stone Hill Winery’s 2020 Chambourcin. Last year’s 2021 Governor’s Cup was from the same winery but with the 2019 vintage.

Chambourcin is cherished for robust flavors and spices. Find notes of black cherry, plum, black pepper, toasty oak and earthy notes on the nose and palate. These flavors, accompanied by soft tannins and a smooth mouthfeel – it is easy to see why it is gold quality.

This varietal pairs well with your favorite fall activities like bonfires and tailgates. Sip on Chambourcin with smoked meats like pork loin, burgers and short ribs. Cook with it using wild game like venison to elevate your wine experience. Earthy flavors from vegetables like mushrooms bring unique notes forward. Create a cheese board with brie, camembert, walnuts, strawberries and fig jam for a full range of how this “gold” wine can pair. On the sweeter side, try Chambourcin with cobbler, chocolate cake or dark chocolate to bring the fruity plum, berry and cherry flavors in the wine forward.

Fill your glass with a Chambourcin this November and cheers to this popular and well-loved varietal! New to Missouri wine or Chambourcin? Let us know what you think by tagging us on social media with #missouriwine and @missouriwine.

Table Setting 101

Table settings can sound intimidating, but they aren’t meant to be overthought. Whether you are hosting or being hosted, this guide of casual to formal place settings will hopefully put your mind at ease and provide some meaning behind the madness. The way a table is displayed sets the tone for the duration of the meal and is most dependent on the food that will be enjoyed.

A casual dining setting is perhaps what many are most familiar with. This most casual form of a table setting is commonly used in restaurants, at banquets and luncheons and at-home dinner parties. The setting is intended for three courses which is often soup or salad, the main course and finished with a dessert.

A step above a casual place setting is a semi-formal setting. You will notice that it adds an additional wine glass and steak knife. This setting is designed for a level above your most casual place setting, but falls short of the extravagant formal place setting.

Finally, a formal place setting is an indication of a grand event. Be prepared for up to seven courses (hors d’oeuvre, soup, appetizer, salad, main course, dessert and mignardise) and a variety of wines from sparkling to dessert wine. When seated at the table, keep in mind “B-M-W”. This stands for Bread-Meal-Water which are placed left to right.

The next time you are hosting a fun dinner party, use this guide to help you add an elegant touch to the meal. Share with us on social media @missouriwine and #MissouriWines as you navigate the holiday season and encounter a variety of table settings.

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