Door Peninsula Winemaker Provides Perspective at Mid-America Conference

Growing grapes in the Midwest isn’t exactly like growing grapes in Napa Valley. Non-traditional soils, unreliable weather and the lack of sufficient hot summer days speak to the struggles and continued lack of good sleep that Wisconsin grape growers endure.

This years Mid-America Fruit Growers Conference hopefully put some of these fruit grower woes to rest. The conference was held January 15 – 18 in Nebraska City. Among the highly-credentialed and experienced speakers at the conference was Door Peninsula Winery’s winemaker, Paul Santoriello.

Santoriello presented sessions on Marketing Fruit Wine from the Wisconsin Perspective and Secrets of Successful Fruit Wine Crafting, including a tasting of examples from Door Peninsula Winery.

“It’s very easy to make a bad wine, and the fruit forward fruit wines are unforgiving; no mistakes allowed,” said Santoriello. “It can be difficult to market Wisconsin wines because the perception is that they aren’t real wines like a California Chardonnay or Cabernet. Fruit wines and cold climate grape wines are often overlooked because they are sweet or the variety is unknown.”

Door Peninsula Winery will release two home grown cold-climate grape wines in 2008. Look for Santoriello’s developed Marechal Foch and La Crosse. For more information visit