Some of the best times many of us enjoy at home with family and friends are over a glass of wine. While you’re walking around the Iowa City Home Show getting new ideas for your home, be sure and stop by Ardon Creek Winery’s booth 96 for free samples of several of its Iowa wines.
Ardon Creek Vineyard and Winery is located outside the town of Letts, about 30 minutes southeast of Iowa City.
“We will have nine or 10 different wines on hand, all the way from drys to sweets,” says Diane Furlong, who runs the winery with her husband, Mike.
The Furlongs started their winery five years ago on Mike’s family farm. “It’s been in the family since 1855,” says Diane.
The Furlongs converted more than four acres of their 156-acre farm into a vineyard because they wanted a project that would bring people together. “We wanted to create a product where people would be involved from start to finish in the agricultural process; something that would require a lot of people, but we could all work together,” Diane says.
Both Diane and Mike grew up helping with all the work that needed to be done on their family farms. “When we were kids on the farm, you vaccinated the hogs, you baled hay, sorted cattle, walked beans, all that stuff,” Diane says. ”We wanted to share that experience. So now people help us plant, people help us harvest and people help us bottle. We’ve pretty much accomplished what we set out to do.”
Diane admits that people may not readily recognize the names of their grape varieties such as Noiret, Chancellor, Edelweiss and LaCrosse. “But we can’t raise Cabernet, merlot and chardonnay. Those vines die in this weather. We have to grow cold climate grape vines. They are different and taste different, but give them a try.”
For more information on Ardon Creek wines and the winery’s entertainment schedule, go online to www.ardoncreek.com.