Missouri has been producing wine since the late 1840’s when German immigrants settled the area along the Missouri River Valley between Augusta and Hermann and called it the “New Rhineland”.
Today this region is home to award winning wineries as well as the Katy Trail State Park …
the nations largest rails-to-trails bicycle path.
When the glaciers retreated at the end of the last ice age 10,000 years ago, they left behind a rich alluvial soil that created southern slopes along the Missouri River. These southern slopes provide warmth for grapes grown in the spring and summer, and provide protection from the northwestern winds in the winter. The soil, topography and climate create the perfect “terroir” for the growing of grapes and the production of wine.
Missouri even helped the French in the 1870’s when a parasite, Phylloxera, was destroying their rootstock. Millions of cuttings of Missouri rootstock were shipped to France to save their industry from disaster.
Wine production continued through the 1800’s and into the early 1900’s, as the railroads continued to boost the Missouri Wine Industry.
Then in 1920, Prohibition destroyed the industry.
After Prohibition, it was a slow comeback, but with the hard work and perseverance of the “new vintners”, Augusta was granted the first AVA ( American Viticultural Area ) on June 20th 1980,
8 months before Napa Valley in California.
The Missouri Wine Country has been growing ever since…