Zraly rates all 50 wine-producing states

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  • Wednesday 24 May 2006

Kevin Zraly has published the first book that deals comprehensively with all 50 states as modern wine-producing states.

For Americans who think that only California, Washington, Oregon and New York produce great wines, Zraly’s overview may be an eye-opener.

Since 1995 the number of wineries nationwide has gone from 1,187 to nearly 4,000.

Kevin Zraly’s ‘American Wine Guide’ has been published on the first anniversary of the US Supreme Court’s revolutionary ruling opening up interstate shipping of wine.

As Windows on the World’s first cellar master, Zraly introduced California wines to Americans. He now introduces them to wines from all 50 states in this consumer-oriented paperback.

‘I have been fortunate, while traveling around the country, to try Valiant Vineyards from South Dakota, Harperfield from Ohio, Gruet from New Mexico, Dos Cabezas from Arizona, Ste. Chapelle from Idaho, Shelton Vineyards from North Carolina, Chaddsford from Pennsylvania, Kluge from Virginia, Fall Creek from Texas,’ Zraly writes.

The Supreme Court’s 2005 ruling, which has generated liberalized shipping legislation in many states, means millions of Americans now have access to such wines.

This development fortifies Zraly’s observation that ‘we are now the third-largest wine-consuming nation in the world, with projections indicating that within the next five years the United States will be the top wine consumer worldwide.’

The 50th state to establish a winery, in 2002, was North Dakota, the northern outpost of the Midwest. Zraly’s state-by-state data on the growth of wineries in this immense heartland of corn and wheat is comprehensive.

Ohio has 106 wineries, Texas 101, Michigan 91, Illinois 65, Missouri 61, Indiana 39, Iowa 39, Wisconsin 32, Oklahoma 29, Kansas 11, South Dakota 11.

The book lists state wine websites, tallies the vineyard acreage in each state, identifies the largest and well-known wineries and lists the top grapes.

It is a sequel to Zraly’s ‘Windows on the World Complete Wine Course,’ the best-selling American wine book in history. Overall, 2. 5m copies have been sold.

Although Windows on the World restaurant was destroyed in the September 11 2001 destruction of the World Trade Center, Zraly continued his Windows on the World Wine School uninterrupted. This year, the school is 30 years old. More than 17,000 people have taken Zraly’s courses.

‘Kevin Zraly’s American Wine Guide’ (Sterling Publishing, New York, $12. 95)

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