Iowa State-produced wines garner local, international awards

Three bottles of wine with International Cold Climate Wine Competition medals hanging around the necks. The wines are La Crescent, Rose and Marquette.AMES, Iowa – Wines produced at Iowa State University recently were put to the test and brought home several top awards from international, regional and Iowa competitions.

The 2022 vintages – La Crescent, Rosé and Marquette – were bottled in March 2023 in Iowa State’s Commercial Winery inside the Food Sciences Building on campus. The wines are primarily made using cold-hardy grapes grown at Iowa State’s Horticulture Research Station and a few other locations in the state. These grapes are unique to Iowa and the Midwest.

La Crescent and Rosé received silver awards in the International Women’s Wine Competition, while Marquette earned bronze honors. This competition is unique because it is judged based on what types of wine would appeal to women’s palate. All the judges were professional women involved in the wine and spirits industries.

Other wine competition results:

2023 Iowa State Fair Commercial Wine Competition

  • Gold: 2022 La Crescent
  • Gold: 2022 Rosé
  • Gold: 2022 Marquette

2023 International Cold Climate Wine Competition

  • Silver: 2022 La Crescent
  • Silver: 2022 Rosé
  • Silver: 2022 Marquette

2023 Finger Lakes International Wine & Spirits Competition

  • Silver: 2022 La Crescent
  • Bronze: 2022 Rosé

This was the second batch of wine produced inside the Commercial Winery – the first was bottled in spring 2022. La Crescent has a hint of sweetness with easy-to-find tropical and floral aromas. Rosé is a semi-sweet wine, well balanced with aromas of strawberry and hints of butterscotch. Marquette is a fruit-forward and food-friendly red with notes of cherry and black currant.

Erin Norton, associate director of Iowa State’s Midwest Grape and Wine Industry Institute, produced the wines with the help of several Iowa State students.

“We are so proud of the wines produced from the second vintage and can't wait for everyone else to try them,” Norton said.

Those interested in tasting and judging the Iowa State wines for themselves can purchase all three varieties at Cyclone Liquors and the Lincoln Center HyVee in Ames while supplies last.


Erin Norton, Midwest Grape and Wine Industry Institute, 515-294-1555,

Whitney Baxter, Agriculture and Life Sciences Communications, 515-294-2314,