The nice part of goals is missing them sometimes. Yes, it was your editor’s goal to complete podcasts for all four Missouri viticulture areas before leaving for the Show Me State… but that sadly hasn’t happened. Something about teenagers and their crazy schedules screwed that up. Oh, and randomly placed Spring Breaks. Ahhh. Good times…
So, instead of showing you are about the Ozark Mountain and Ozark Highlands AVAs, I will postpone the publication of these videos so that I can gather some footage of my own…. and instead will talk about where I am planning to go on my Missouri adventures. While I am only going to be in Missouri for a long weekend and most of that time will be spent in St. Louis, I have found that I will be able to visit all four viticultural areas. Yeah!
As you can see, I have gotten lucky that all of these appellations are located at least in part near St. Louis. So naturally, given that I have no obligations to teens and/or volleyball (like last year or next week) I get to explore Missouri.
The conference location is the starting or ending point of the trip. At least from a planning perspective this is the raison d’être for my get away. Kevin is watching the teens, which earns him my pity as it is their spring break. He initially wished to join me along this journey but thought better of it as it is likely teens would have sucked all the joy out of me for this adventure, and I thank him profusely.
Why Ste. Genevieve? Simply, it is the oldest town in the state. Founded by the French along the Mississippi River before even the French and Indian Wars, the town has a collection of Creole-French buildings that were common among French settlers or habitants… Obscure? Perhaps. But I love that kind of stuff. Plus there are wineries there too which are located within the Ozark Mountain AVA. This AVA is the biggest in Missouri (especially since it extends into Arkansas and even Oklahoma) and the Ozark Highlands and Hermann appellations are located within its boundaries.
My next must see stop is the town of Kaskaskia, Illinois. Crossing back over the Mississippi, you say? Hardly. Kaskaskia, also a French settlement, was located east of the Mississippi but as the river has changed course, so has the location of the town and it is currently located just a couple of miles south of Ste. Genevieve. Actually, most of the original town has been lost to flooding and hardly anyone lives there anymore (the 2000 census indicated a population of 9). The appeal of Kaskaskia is twofold. It is the original capital of the state (or maybe territory) of Illinois. Also? It has a bell that was a given to the local parish church by Louis XV (Yes. Louis XIV is dead, to answer my husband’s snappy response whenever hear hears the name of a monarch with a number attached to his name.. Thanks so much, dudes from Monty Python).
The next goals of the trip are to visit all three appellations that I haven’t been to before. This means, stopping at wineries in Ozark Mountain (done… with stops in Ste. Genevieve), Ozark Highlands (done with stops in and around Leasburg or Steelville, MO) and in Hermann.
As if this isn’t a busy enough weekend, I will then be attending the Drinklocalwine.com conference in St. Louis. Whew. I am going to be tired come Monday. But I will have lots to talk about when I get back!
Hope you have as much fun this weekend!