Armstrong Orchard & Winery Review
Address: W853 County Road B Campbellsport,Wisconsin 53010.
Phone Number: 920-477-3007
Tasting Hours: Jun 4-Nov: Thurs-Sun 10:00-6:00
Region: Wisconsin Ledge AVA, Wisconsin
Reviewer: Larschelby Kidd
Review Date: 6/29/2014
Reviewer: Larschelby Kidd
I’ve visited many apple orchards during my residence in Wisconsin, but only a few are wineries, and even fewer produce wine from apples, other fruits, and wine grapes. For the record, the first time I tasted Armstrong’s Marquette, it was the best Wisconsin Marquette I had ever tasted, and it still is. Many other Wisconsin wineries have recently released new vintages of wine made from the Marquette grape, and I’ll continue the difficult work of trying to find one that is better.
Wisconsin’s wine industry is still fairly small, though new wineries are opening every year, and most Wisconsin wineries are located near small towns off the main highway. Sounds familiar? Think Napa, Sonoma. I will tell you that the trip is worth the drive. You will find Armstrong Orchard and Vineyard nestled in a small, rural town surrounded by agriculture as far as the eye can see.
Open spaces is an understatement here. You have plenty of room to stretch out and take in some fresh air with peaceful sounds of nature. Coming from the city, L.A., I’ve grown to appreciate the beauty that nature gives us freely. The first glance at the Armstrong building doesn’t make much of an impression, it’s almost warehouse-like.
As soon as you enter the doors, any negative impressions are washed away. Clean, friendly, welcoming, open, and delightfully comfortable are just a few of the adjectives that flowed through my mind. “Welcome! How are you this fine day?” “Better now,” I replied.
I’m always excited to try something new when visiting wineries, and Armstrong is where I experienced my first, dry Apple Wine. Most apple wine is usually sweet or dessert like. Not this one. All of the apple wines are made from the 3000 trees on the property. Specifically the Honey Crisp variety. I can only describe the wine as “BALANCED”. They give some dry Rieslings a run for the money on taste and structure. Blueberry Wine, marvelous! Truly tasting the fruit, isn’t that really what it’s about?
Some fruit wines are sweet for the sake of the consumer believing that this is the way it is. At Armstrong this just isn’t the case. Sampling through the fruit wines was an eye-opening experience. The Wisconsin wine industry relies heavily on off-dry fruit wines, and some wineries never really try anything else. Fortunately, Armstrong – and a few others – will give your palate an education on what fruit wines should taste like.
A rare statement from any winery, “We sell out and that’s OK with us.” It’s nice to find a small winery who makes wine for the sheer pleasure of your enjoyment. Armstrong is also committed to using only locally grown fruits and grapes to produce their wines. Quantities are limited so they do not ship. If you live in Wisconsin or are visiting, you owe it to yourself to stop by Armstrong’s to experience the range and quality of Wisconsin fruit wines. You can find recipes and other fun information on Armstrong’s website.