The Buckeye State
Wine production in Ohio began in the 1820s when Nicholas Longworth planted the first Catawba grapes in the Ohio River Valley region. By the 1840s, Ohio was the leading producer of wine in the United States. Unfortunately the wine industry suffered a one-two punch in the early 1860s with the twin scourges of black rot and mildew and the loss of manpower to the war. Ohio winemaking moved north into the Lake Erie Islands and by the end of the 19th century, the region was known as the Lake Erie Grape Belt.
As with all other states, Prohibition effectively killed off the local wine industry until the 1960s and “the planting of French-American varieties in southern Ohio, encouraged largely by The Ohio State University’s Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center in Wooster.” Since then more than 40 wineries have opened up across the state, and in 1975 the Ohio Wine Producers Association was formed.
|Number of Wineries:||162|
|Year 1st Winery Established||1813|
|Varietals Cultivated:||Aurore, Baco Noir, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Carmine, Catawba, Cayuga, Chambourcin, Chancellor, Chardonel, Chardonnay, Chelois, Concord, De Chaunac, Delaware, Geisenheim, Gewürztraminer, Kerner, La Crosse, Landot, Lemberger, Leon Millot, Marechal Foch, Merlot, Niagara, Pinot Gris, Pinot Meunier, Pinot Noir, Rayon d’Or, Reliance, Riesling, Sangiovese, Sauvignon Blanc, Seyval Blanc, Steuben, Traminette, Vidal Blanc, Vignoles, Zweigelt|