Holy-Field Vineyard & Winery Review
Address: 18807 158th St. Basehor,Kansas 66007.
Phone Number: 913-980-3157
Tasting Hours: Mon-Fri 10:00-6:00, Sat 9:30-6:00, Sun 12:00-6:00
Reviewer: Mark and Sonja
Review Date: 6/7/2015
Reviewer: Mark and Sonja
The tasting room of the Holy-Field Vineyard and Winery is just off the interstate and quite conveniently located a short jaunt from the Legends development in Kansas City. A somewhat unimpressive one-story structure, it nevertheless has event space and a homey general-store feel to it. The tasting bar is in the back of a formidable gift shop where all things wine and kitsch can easily be purchased. Behind the tasting room bar is a wall entirely covered in various medals, ribbons and awards that the winery has earned over the years. Out front, a very old dog defies the heat and glances nonplussed at all who enter. Holy-Field boasts a 14-acre vineyard planted in 1986. The tasting room, opened in 1994 by Les Meyer and Michelle, his daughter, is among the oldest vineyards in the state of Kansas.
Helpful, if uninhibited in her opinions, the tasting room attendant, one of the family members who helps run the winery, treated us well as customers, but was strangely protective of information about how much wine was made, who made it, and so forth. We found ourselves wondering if they might have received a critical review recently, as her ambiguity and aloofness was going to impede any technical review we might have written. That said, maybe she just didnt want to talk shop. Whatever the case, she was helpful and pleasant as an attendant, even if she wasnt going to show us all her cards.
The wines at Holy-Field were just fine, though nothing among them really stood out. Tailoring to the stereotypical Midwestern palate, dry wines came at a premium while sweet wines were the norm. A few that we would have liked to try were only available by the bottle, but the tasting was free, and it seems imprudent to be critical of what one is offered at no cost. What was more impressive, however, was the selection of port wines (the winery apparently being old enough to be grandfathered into calling their fortified wine by the traditional Portuguese name for fortified red wines).
Rarely in the Midwest does one find anything that would constitute a library wine. This is in part because many wineries in this region are relatively young, partly because the wines produced in the Midwest are primarily produced for immediate consumption, and partly because most small wineries cant afford to hold on to their stock any longer than they have to. So imagine our delight when Holy-Field had, in essence, library fortified wines available! Port wines produced upwards of 25 years ago were available at relatively modest prices (the oldest were, if memory serves, around $50 for a 750ml bottle). Having enjoyed the most recent vintage of their fortified wine, we took a bottle of older stuff home with us for a special occasion.
The convenience of the location and the free tasting alone make Holy-Field a winery to visit on your next trip to the KC metro area. Kansas City is a place of extreme temperatures, and the sweeter wines would be great for a hot day, while the fortifieds would be a solid pairing with a cold winter night. Approximately a half hour from downtown KC without traffic (good luck with that), a stop at Holy-Field would be a good supplement to incorporate into a trip to the Renaissance Fair, the KC Motor Speedway, Great Wolf Lodge, a Sporting KC Game, or other attractions in the Legends area. Enjoy!