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Wisconsin has always been nicknamed the Dairy State thanks to its dairy farms and cheese production but now the state is gaining ground for the other half of wind-and-cheese combo. Small home winemakers and their vineyards are popping up all over central Wisconsin and their wines are winning awards!
Amateur winemakers are attracted to this craft because it’s organic and they can control the alcohol level, the flavor and the sweetness.
Though the vineyard is a recent phenomenon in Wisconsin, winemaking is not. Other fruits, such as raspberries, blackberries, elderberries, plums and cranberries have found themselves in wines including such strange ingredients as carrots, dandelions and lilacs! Fruit winemaking kits are quite popular in the state. The fruit which is currently the most popular for making wine is the pomegranate!
The grapes used for winemaking come from hybrid vines such as the King of the North, a variety of the Concorde grape. Most vines are a cross between native grapes and wine-quality grapes specifically developed to survive the harsh northern winters in Wisconsin. Other problems are abundant such as disease and mildew, however Wisconsin’s wine industry is starting to thrive fed by the passion and creativity of home winemakers.
(I haven’t provided the vocabulary this time. Read the article and use your dictionaries to create you own lexicon on winemaking.)