Two High-Class Gold Medals
Tasters Guild International Recognizes Wisconsin’s Oldest Licensed Winery
May 20, 2014, Algoma, Wisconsin
Von Stiehl Winery in Algoma just received six medals from Tasters Guild International, a wine and food appreciation society based in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The judging accepts many styles of wine from around the world and places them into classes consisting of fruit type and retail price. While the Algoma winery won awards from the Tasters’ Guild for decades, gold medals in the higher dollar classes are difficult to attain.
Winemaker Aric Schmiling has seen hundreds, if not thousands, of medals awarded to von Stiehl Winery in the 32 years that he has been in the family business. “For a while, the medals were coming so regularly that we didn’t see much reason to keep sending out for more. Instead, we invested in equipment and practices that would turn out higher end wines,” Schmiling comments. “It’s not that uncommom to receive a gold medal in a class under $20, but to receive two gold medals in $30+ classes is a fantastic feeling!”
Both gold medal awards were presented to wines made from Wisconsin fruit. Doc Stiehl’s Cherry Bounce, a sweet and smooth concoction of Door County cherry wine and cherry brandy distilled from von Stiehl’s cherry wine was the first to receive a gold in the $30 class. The high-alcohol bounce is produced from Door County Cherries grown by Seaquist Orchards in Sister Bay, and is aged in red wine barrels for six months prior to release. Barrels help to smooth out the high alcohol, which comes in at 20.5%. The second gold was awarded to von Stiehl Apple Icing. The ice wine is produced from fruit grown at Hillside Apples in Kewaunee County; a perfectly balanced ice wine that pairs concentrated aromas of freshly picked apples with flavors of butterscotch, vanilla, and honey.
Silver Medals were awarded to two new dry red wines, Zinfandel and Union, and the winery’s classic Blueberry Wine. A silver medal was awarded to a new French-hybrid oak barrel-fermented Chardonnay.
The oldest licensed award-winning Wisconsin winery was the first to produce wine from Door County cherries, and specializes in red varietals. Tour barrel-filled arched limestone aging cellars, and a modern winemaking facility. A positive staff and value priced wines make this a “must-stop” destination. The winery is located at 115 Navarino Street in Algoma, and is open seven days a week. More information can be found at vonStiehl.com or by calling 920-487-5208.