Glassware Polishing

April 18, 2019

Whether you’re relaxing at home after a hard day of work or hosting a formal get together, pouring your favorite bottle of wine into a glass covered in smudges and water spots can ruin the experience. Below are some tips to ensure an odor-free, gleaming wine glass.

Remember to handle glassware carefully. Slower is better and even when they feel sturdy, wine glasses are very fragile. Avoid a possible injury by handling your glass gently in every step.

What you will need:
Clean wine glasses
Microfiber cloth (won’t leave fuzz or odor)
Pot or bowl

The first step is to fill a pot or large bowl with hot, not boiling, steaming water. Grab your wine glass by the stem and hold above the hot water at an angle. The glass should not touch the water or become wet.

Once the inside of the wine glass is steamy, begin to gently polish with your cloth. This will not require a lot of pressure.

Repeat step one by placing the glass back in the steam, and steaming the exterior. Gently polish. The same steps will be taken to polish the base of the wine glass: and, as for the stem, wipe down a few times and you’re done!

Now it’s time to invite some friends over and raise a toast with your beautifully polished wine glasses.

Wine Process Terminology

April 12, 2019

From grape to glass, winemaking is a multi-step process. If you are a lover of wine you likely have the basics down, like harvesting, crushing, pressing and bottling. However, there is so much more that happens in-between the basics.

Additional terminology that winemakers use in their vocabulary:

AVA: American Viticulture Area. An AVA is a designated wine grape-growing region in the United States distinguishable by geographic features, with boundaries defined by the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB).
Brix: scale used to measure the sugar level in unfermented grapes.
Cap: grape solids such as pits, skins and stems that rise to the top of the tank during the fermentation process.
Cold Stabilization: cooling of a wine to remove excess unstable potassium bitartrate, forming tartrate crystals or wine diamonds.
Decanting: transferring wine from the original bottle to a glass vessel. The purpose of this process is to aerate a young wine or separate any sediments from older wine.
Devatting: separating the juice from leftover solids.
Disgorgement: removal of frozen sediment from the bottle that remains after the second fermentation in sparkling wine-making.
Enophile: person who enjoys wine.
Hybrid: genetic crossing of two or more grape varietals.
Legs: droplets of wine that stream down the inside of a wine glass after swirling.
Magnum: large format bottle of wine that is twice the size of a regular 750 ml bottle and contains approximately 10 glasses of wine.
Pressing: process of extracting juice from grapes.
Pruning: annual trimming of grapevines from the previous years’ harvest.
Sommelier: formally trained and educated wine professional who specializes in all aspects of wine services, pairings and storage.

We hope you try out some of these terms during your next excursion in Missouri wine country. For more wine terminology, check out Wine Words and Terms and 21 Wine Tasting Terms You’ll Want to Know.

Edg-Clif Vineyard Winery & Brewery: from World-Renowned Cattle Ranch to Award-Winning Missouri Winery

April 10, 2019

Down a long gravel road bordered with rows of vineyards in Potosi, Missouri, you’ll find Edg-Clif Vineyard Winery and Brewery.  Every nook and cranny of this place calls to mind delightful memories for winery owners, Cyndy Keesee and Steffie Littlefield. The two sisters spent many blissful moments of their childhood exploring the former Hereford farm.

“When we welcome our visitors here,” says Cyndy, “it’s truly to our home.”


The sisters are the third generation entrusted with the care of this rugged yet beautiful land located in the Ozark Mountain wine region. Their grandparents, Andrew and Hazel Knapp, originally purchased acreage for a hunting retreat in 1926, but had bigger visions for the area. The enterprising couple began buying adjoining properties and started a Hereford ranch in the 1930s. During their visits to the farm, the sisters enjoyed helping their grandparents with their world-renowned show herd. They prepared the cattle for show and led them around the ring for judging. They even had a pet bull, a grand champion named Tuffy.

When their parents passed away, Cyndy and Steffie were determined to revive the farm and give it new life. After carefully researching the soil and climate, they planted a four acre vineyard in 2008. French-American hybrid grapes are now grown on seven acres, while the winery and venue are situated on 30 acres. Bison from a neighboring ranch have been roaming a portion of their farmland for more than twenty years. Wildlife are plentiful on the farm while the spring fed Fourche a Renault River flows with bass and trout throughout the property.  



The winery opened in 2011 and is very much a family affair. Each essential member of the crew has their own set of skills. Steffie is a horticulturalist and loves the outdoors. She is the winery’s official viticulturist and keeps a close eye on the vineyards, while also tending to the vegetable and flower gardens. Her husband, Stephen, manages the property and is the go-to guy for anything that needs to be built or fixed. Cyndy is the winemaker and also excels at cooking, while her husband, Girard, is in charge of winery operations. Cyndy’s daughter, Rachael, makes a full selection of craft beers in one of the farm houses.

The winery features 15 delicious wines, although the sisters admit they have a favorite - their Chambourcin Rosé, made in the dry, French-style. “We are crazy about that grape,” says Cyndy. “It’s so beautiful.”

Many of the farm’s original buildings still stand, including the historic Showbarn, where you’ll find the winery’s tasting bar. The 1862 stone house built into the side of an 80 foot limestone cliff has been expanded and restored multiple times.  



Visitors to the winery who want to extend their day trip into a weekend getaway can rent one of three 100-year-old farm houses on the property. These homes have been renovated and offer a quiet oasis from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Explore the nearby rivers, trails and vintage towns. “There is something so spiritual in watching the sun set over these ancient hills and native forests,” says Steffie. “Many take advantage of our walking trails where they discover wildflowers and the river, while marveling at the majestic oaks and pines that remain untouched by modern demands.”

Cyndy and Steffie credit their grandparents and the people who lived on their family farm for instilling in them determination and a great work ethic. “We learned to see life from many perspectives and appreciate hard working people,” explains Cyndy. “Taking care of our family farm and creating a viable business here again is our dream come true. Our children love to participate when they can and are proud of what we have. For us, that is what it’s all about.”

The sisters enjoy sharing the family farm with their visitors and strive to make sure each person feels welcome. “There is something special and humbling about being the guardian of nature’s beautiful land that fills our life with satisfaction,” says Steffie. “It’s important that we are leaving it just as wonderful for the next generation.”

Exceed Your Expectations in Excelsior Springs

April 04, 2019

Discover the beauty and charm of Excelsior Springs, a city located just 30 miles northeast of Kansas City. The town has a truly remarkable story, some would even say miraculous, of how it came to be known as “America’s Haven of Health.”
Excelsior Springs started like many towns in America – as farmland. A wheat field covered what is now the downtown area. The landscape began to change with the discovery of the city’s first mineral spring in the late 1800s.
As the story goes, a local farmer’s daughter suffered from a form of Tuberculosis, a diagnosis that came with a guaranteed death sentence. The man’s desperate search for a cure led him to a campground in town. A man at the site suggested he give the girl some of the red spring water that flowed from Fishing River. The farmer’s daughter drank and bathed in the water and within weeks she was cured of the disease. Other reports of miracles followed. Word spread and thousands traveled to the town, hoping to find a cure for their ailments. Eventually 40 separate mineral springs with four distinct varieties of water were discovered in the area. In fact, the community has the world’s greatest collection of mineral waters. 
Today, Excelsior Springs still attracts visitors but they’re more likely to pursue other activities in the quaint city. If you’re planning to visit the area, these are some of the items you should include on your to-do list.

Start your adventures by exploring Missouri wine country, but leave the driving to someone else. Hop on board the Chamber Trolley and sip delicious Missouri wines along the way at Fence Stile Vineyards and Winery, Four Horses & a Dog Winery and Van Till Family Farm Winery. Two different wine tours are available on the trolley, including one that features a gourmet brunch paired with Missouri wines at Willow Spring Mercantile, a boutique retailer that houses the largest selection of Missouri wine in the world. Make sure you book your reservations ahead of time. Tickets sell out quickly.

Take a step back into the pages of history and tour the Hall of Waters. This art deco masterpiece sits on top of where the town’s first spring was discovered in 1880. The building is the most ambitious project to have been undertaken by the Federal Public Works Administration in Missouri. The former health resort features a two-story solarium and the world’s longest water bar where visitors sampled water from ten of the town’s natural springs. Patrons could also immerse themselves in the building’s swimming pool which contained 100,000 gallons of mineral water. Although the bar and pool are no longer functional, a new museum inside the Hall of Waters provides an in-depth look at the city’s mineral water history.

During your stay in Excelsior Springs, explore the town's other historic attractions, including the Excelsior Springs Museum and the Superior Well and Pagoda, the only remaining original mineral water well pavilion in town. The museum is located in a former bank and includes artifacts from the town’s history as well as photos, art and newspaper clippings.

Continue your journey through time by touring the Watkins Woolen Mill State Historic Site, the only 19th century textile mill in the United States that still features original machinery. The site includes a three-story woolen mill and an elegant home, both preserved to reflect the 1870s time period. Time your visit to coincide with the living history programs that are offered throughout the year including cider pressing, gardening, rag rug weaving and wood stove cooking. Other presentations include a one-room schoolhouse program that features a short lesson in 19th century school subjects and an industrial revolution outreach program where participants can get hands-on milling experience.

If you’re up for a round of golf, grab your clubs and head to the Excelsior Springs Golf Course. Designed by a renowned golf course architect in 1915, the public course is one of the best in the Kansas City metro and features 18 holes, a brand new club house and restaurant, Golf Hill Grille. If golf is not your game, explore more than 90 acres of parkland, featuring 17 parks and three walking trails. Anglers can try their luck at several fresh water areas in town.

Excelsior Springs is home to many great dining options that might pique your interest and delight your palate, including Ventana Gourmet Grill , an upscale casual dining experience in the downtown area, and Elements Destination Restaurant, an upscale restaurant located in the country.

After a fun day spent exploring the area, relax, renew and rejuvenate during an overnight stay at one of the beautiful bed-and-breakfasts in town, including the Inn on Crescent LakePayne Jailhouse, Sunny Side Cottage, just to name a few.

Or, check into The Elms, a luxurious hotel featuring the region’s premier spa resort. Enjoy a variety of amenities including a steam room, sauna, grotto and tranquil massages at the spa or in your room. This century-old building has a legendary past. The current building is the third structure built on-site after the first two Elms hotels were destroyed in fires. The Elms gained fame as a national health resort in the late 1800s. The hotel has had a list of notable occupants, including legendary gangsters, Al Capone, “Pretty Boy” Floyd and Bugs Moran in the 1930s. President Harry S. Truman also stayed at the hotel on the eve of the 1948 presidential election. Originally built for the great influx of people who came to town searching for a cure, the Elms became the final resting place for a few who never checked out. Strange occurrences include the ghost who leaves wet footprints near the lap pool. A jiggle on the door knob may not mean housekeeping has arrived to clean your room. If you’re feeling brave, sign up for the evening ghost tour and learn about the spirits that still call the hotel home.


During your next road trip or weekend getaway, exceed your expectations in Excelsior Springs, a town that offers more than a little something for everyone.

For your convenience, download this trip itinerary.

*All photos featured in this blog were taken by Kevin Morgan.


Christine's Vineyard

Christine’s Vineyard is owned by Ben and Janette Cade. They have both been residents of Southwest Missouri for over 20 years. 

Ben grew up in a rural area of Mid Coastal Maine while Janette spent her childhood in the mountains of Western Mexico. They married in June of 2021, giving them a blended family of five wonderful children. 
Ben’s background is in residential and light commercial construction and Janette is a professional manager. Neither could have imagined becoming the owners of a beautiful vineyard and entertainment venue before it happened.


Sip a Spring Classic: Chardonel

April 02, 2019

Picture of grapes - sip a spring classic, Chardonel








Hello April! Spring has sprung and many wine enthusiasts are trading in their reds for whites. Whether you’re picnicking in the park or relaxing inside while it rains, don’t forget to grab one of your favorite Missouri wines.   

April is also Chardonel Month. Chardonel is a cross between Seyval Blanc and Chardonnay. The Missouri Chardonel is a classic white wine that ranges in style from dry to sweet. When aged in an oak barrel, the wine has a subtle spice but in stainless steel Chardonel has more of a citrus taste.

One of our favorite things about Chardonel is how food friendly it is. Spring is a great time to fire up that grill and Chardonel pairs well with grilled chicken and fish like trout and halibut. It also pairs well with smoked pork, portabella mushrooms, gouda and Monterey jack cheeses, apples and even vanilla pudding.

Chardonel accounts for only 3.9% of all grapes grown in Missouri, but don’t let that number fool you, the grapes are highly productive and durable to our Show-Me State’s frigid temperatures.

Enjoy the season and sip a spring classic - Chardonel.

Improve Your Wine Aroma Detection Skills

March 26, 2019

Have you ever read the description on the back of a wine bottle but then struggled to detect the notes in your wine glass? 

You’re not alone. Our ability to pick out the aromas in wine is aided by all the wonderful smells in our memory bank. For example, if you’ve smelled a lemon before, chances are you can detect a citrus smell in a wine, but how many of us have smelled a black currant?

Why is our ability to smell so important? Research shows that between 75 to 95 percent of what we taste is derived from our sense of smell. Familiarizing yourself with the aromas in a wine can help you more fully appreciate the experience. 

The great news is that you don’t have to be a sommelier to improve your sniffing skills. You can educate yourself on your own time with a wine aroma kit. You can find a variety of premade kits online and in select stores. These kits take the most common aromas found in wine and bottle them into small vials. The kits come in different sizes. Of course, the more aromas they contain, the more expensive the price tag, with some kits costing several hundred dollars. 

Or you can save money and build your own wine aroma kit. Examples of DIY wine aroma kits can be found on Wine Spectator and Wine Folly

Once you have a premade or homemade kit, sniff the vials on a regular basis until you can identify each one, then take your trained nose to a get-together and impress your friends. Engage in a little blind wine smelling. Ask your friends to hand you a glass of wine and see if you can correctly identify the notes.
The UC Davis wine aroma wheel is another great resource that can aid you in the process. The wheel has several sections designed to help you identify the different flavors, scents and aromas found in a variety of wines. 

Of course, an even more enjoyable way to improve your sense of smell is to gain firsthand knowledge while visiting the beautiful wineries in Missouri. During your visit, the winery’s knowledgeable staff will guide you through the tasting experience and help you detect the aromas in their wines.

Before you embark on your adventure, review these aromas often associated with Missouri wines.

Red wines

• Cherries and light oak

• Grapey

• Dark berries with light spices

White wines 

• Lemon or the inside of a barrel

• Floral arrangement 

Vidal Blanc
• Fresh summer garden

• Fresh cut tropical fruit 

Additional information about these varietals can be found on the Missouri wines website.

We hope these suggestions help you become more familiar with the delightful aromas in Missouri wines and get more out of your wine tasting experience. 

Missouri Red Wine Cheese Dip

March 22, 2019

Searching for appetizer ideas? Let your online pursuit end here. This creamy (and absolutely dreamy) Missouri red wine cheese dip is so delicious it deserves six stars out of five. While it may take a little effort to whip it all together, the end result is worth it. Impress your family and friends with this savory cheese spread, destined to be the one snack that keeps people coming back for more.

Prep Time: 1 hour I Serving Size: 8
¼ cup Caramelized onions
2 tbsp Fresh rosemary, minced
5 oz Feta cheese, crumbled
2 tbsp Red wine (we used a semi-dry wine)
3 tbsp Honey
½ tsp Sea salt, fine
8 oz Cream cheese – 1/3 less fat, softened 
Bread or Crackers

1. Caramelize onions. Place the onions, rosemary, feta cheese, red wine, honey and fine sea salt in a food processor. Pulse until it forms a thick paste, occasionally scraping down the sides.
2. Add cream cheese and pulse until well-blended. 
3. Transfer to a serving bowl, cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.
4. Serve chilled with your favorite bread or crackers and Missouri wine. 

Discover Delicious Rosé Wines in Missouri Wine Country

March 12, 2019

Have you discovered a rosé wine that’s divine? Or, do you still wonder what all the fuss is about?
Rosés continue to be a trendy favorite among wine consumers - women and men. There’s even a special term coined for the male segment of the population who enjoy rosé wines – brosé. 
Rosés derive their beautiful color from the process in which they are made. During the crushing step, Missouri winemakers only allow the juice to remain in contact with the skins for a brief amount of time before fermenting the juice. Since each winemaker has their own timing when it comes to making rosé wines, you’ll see a range of stunning colors and taste a variety of delicious styles in the Show-Me State. From dry to sweet and everything in-between, we invite you to discover a rosé favorite the next time you explore Missouri wine country. 
(This story was compiled based upon winery submissions and may only list a portion of Missouri wineries that feature a rosé wine.)
1947 Frene Creek Road
Hermann, MO 65041
Dry Rosé
The enticing aroma of this dry full-bodied rosé evokes the scents of strawberry and pineapple guava. Inspired by the tradition of the Old World rosés and handcrafted for the adventurous at heart, Adam Puchta Winery’s rosé is similar in style to a French or Spanish dry rosé. 
1505 Genessee Suite 100
Kansas City, MO 64102
2018 Rosé 
Amigoni Urban Winery’s 2018 rosé is fresh, lively and smells like ripe strawberries. The classic dry rosé is made from 100% Cabernet Franc and is aged in stainless steel. This rosé will be released on June 8, National Rosé Day. 
2018 Sparkling Syrah Rosé 
Bollicini - Italian for bubbles!  This sparkling rosé, made from Syrah, is brimming with bright cherries, dried strawberries and white flowers.  With hints of white pepper and grapefruit zest on the finish, these bubbles can be enjoyed before a meal or with dessert. Visit Amigoni Urban Winery on Mother's Day weekend when this delightful sparkling rosé will be released. 
5601 High Street
Augusta, MO 63332
Estate Bottled La Fleur Savage
A dry rosé with raspberry, cranberry and mulberry bouquets, Augusta Winery’s rosé has a fresh, crisp body and smooth, refreshing finish. It’s a great wine for white wine drinkers who want to experiment with reds and for red wine drinkers who don't want something too heavy with their meal or prefer something lighter in the summer. 
6601 S. Highway 94
Augusta, MO 63332
2017 Rosé
Made in small quantities, this rosé has flavors of strawberry, raspberry and melon and is perfect for warm weather.
21124 Cave Road
Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670
Dry Chambourcin Rosé
Cave Vineyard’s Dry Chambourcin Rosé is fresh and crisp with berry notes. Perfect on warm days, this rosé pairs nicely with lighter dishes and the Strussione family’s homemade biscotti. 
24345 State Route WW
Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670
2017 Dry Rosé
Chaumette Vineyards and Winery’s mostly dry wine lineup features a rosé with delicate fruit flavors of cherry and a hint of herbs that linger on the nose. Made from the Chambourcin grape, the wine’s palate delivers excellent acidity, with fruit forward flavors of cherry and strawberry. 
16905 Jowler Creek Road
Platte City, MO 64079
Butterfly Blush
Jowler Creek Vineyard and Winery’s premium rosé is bursting with a bold, fruit flavor and finishes with a flutter of sweetness. 
14020 W. Highway BB
Rocheport, MO 65279
Pink Fox
Unlike an ordinary blush, this rosé wine from Les Bourgeois Vineyard is made with the Native American Catawba grape giving it a bold fruit flavor and a pleasantly sweet finish. 
St. Vincent Dry Rosé
Showcasing the Missouri St. Vincent grape, this elegant pink wine produces a candied cherry nose with a flavor of delicate strawberry and a hint of lemon peel.
21356 Gore Road
Marthasville, MO 63357
All Aboard! Blush
This light rosé is made from Lost Creek Vineyard’s luscious Noiret grape and is on the sweet side of semi-sweet. Predominant berry notes on the nose include strawberries and black cherries.
201 Montelle Drive
Augusta, MO 63332
La Roseé
Montelle Winery’s dry rosé is made primarily from a blend of Chambourcin and St. Vincent grapes. The bouquet is that of raspberry, cranberry and mulberry. With its crisp body and smooth, refreshing finish, La Roseé is perfect with any kind of food.
540 State Rte B.
St. James, MO 65559
Pink Catawba 
This beautiful pink sweet wine has an excellent acid balance to keep it light and refreshing.
Sparkling Blush 
Enjoy this light and refreshing bubbly with a bubblegum flavor. The zesty sparkling rosé has excellent acid and a flavorful, fruity finish.
1888 Co. Rte 342
Fulton, MO 65251
Picnic Time 
Perfect for a picnic, Serenity Valley Winery’s dry rosé has the essence of a spicy strawberry, a hint of citrus aromas and a smooth fruity finish.
1110 Stone Hill Hwy
Hermann, MO 65041
Rosé Montaigne
This semi-sweet rosé is soft with mellow sweetness and lovely floral aromas. 
The winery’s sweet rosé bursts with aromas of honeysuckle and lychee. 
Brut Rosé
Enjoy the delicious flavor of ripe red berries with hints of floral in this sparkling wine. 
Pink Catawba
Fruity, this light sweet rosé is full of flavor. 
Dry Rosé
A fan favorite, this dry rosé features zesty flavors and fresh, fruity aromas
1132 Brick Church Road
County Road 406
Bland, MO 65014
Kran Rosé
Enjoy a touch of cranberry in a glass. Wenwood Farm Winery’s semi-dry rosé has just the right amount of sweetness and tang. 
Berry Blush 
Sip springtime in a glass with this sweet rosé, as fresh as the first strawberry of the season.

Red Wine Grilled Cheese

March 11, 2019


Everyone needs comfort food now and again to provide that instant gratification. Why not put a new spin on a classic dish like grilled cheese sandwiches. Whether you need a hearty meal after a long day, a hard week or due to the dreary weather adding wine is always a bonus.




Servings: 4-6 | Time: 20-30 minutes                  


  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • ½ Red onion (chopped)
  • 1 clove Garlic (minced)
  • Dash Rosemary
  • Dash Thyme
  • 1 tbsp Flour
  • ¾  cup Red wine (Norton)
  • ½  cup Shredded cheese
  • French bread

Melt butter over medium heat to prepare pan. Sauté onion until softened, then add garlic, rosemary and thyme. Continue to cook. Mix in flour then add wine. We used Missouri Norton but other red wines could be substituted. Reduce mixture until thickened. Apply melted butter to one side of the sliced French bread. For extra flavor add garlic salt to the melted butter. Spread wine reduction sauce onto the opposite side of each slice of bread then add shredded cheese. We used an Applewood smoked cheddar. Top with another slice of French bread. To really amp up the wow factor, add a few slices of bacon.

Enjoy your new found delight with a glass of Missouri wine!

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