University of Minnesota

U of M to host annual cold-climate wine judging

August 14, 2014

Media note: Reporters and photographers are welcome to interview and film the judges between 11:30 and 12 noon; after that the judging area is closed to everyone but the judges.  To arrange interviews outside this time frame, please contact Gordon Rouse or Gary Gardner. A list of winning entries will be available Tuesday evening.

What: The International Cold Climate Wine Competition
When: 11:30 a.m. to noon, Tuesday, Aug. 19
Where: Continuing Education and Conference Center, 1890 Buford Ave., St. Paul campus of the University of Minnesota

A panel of experts will taste and judge nearly 300 wines from 59 commercial wineries in 11 states and Canada on Tuesday, Aug. 19, on the University of Minnesota’s St. Paul campus. The competition is the only such event for wines made from fruit grown in cold climates.

The sixth annual competition is a partnership between the Minnesota Grape Growers Association and the University of Minnesota, which developed several of the cold-hardy grapes used to make the wines in the competition.  

The awards will be based on blind tastings by 21 expert judges. Judges include prominent wine writers, restaurateurs, retailers and wine educators.  Seven three-judge panels will determine the initial awards, with top-scoring wines evaluated by all 21 judges for "best of" categories and the Governor’s Cup award.

The "Minnesota Governor’s Cup" award will go to the Minnesota grape wine placing highest in the competition.  

Only professional wineries are eligible to compete. The Minnesota State Fair’s annual winemaking competition, with categories for amateur winemakers, continues as a separate entity. 

For further details on the event, see

Twin Cities Campus: