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Idaho wineries, wines and wine country

  Idaho's vineyard elevations (ranging up to 3,000 feet) are higher than most others in the Northwest and soils are comprised of primarily volcanic-ash.  Add to that long, warm daylight hours during grape-growing season - typical of northern latitudes and arid climates, cool summer evenings characteristic of desert environments and you have a combination of factors that contributes to producing quality wine grapes with concentrated fruit flavors and naturally high acidities.  And that is the foundation of Idaho's growing wine industry.

     Most of Idaho's wineries are concentrated along the southwestern portion of the Snake River Valley.  Half a dozen more are clustered in the eastern part of the Snake River Valley appellation, between Mountain Home and Twin Falls, and three others are north of Twin Falls, off of Hwy 93 in Ketchum near Sun Valley.  The northern part of Idaho State is home to another six wineries with 14 more close by, just west across the Washington border. 

       The Snake River Valley became Idaho's first appellation in 2007, authorized by the US Department of the Treasury's Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB).  The climatic influence of the Snake River creates a favorable growing environment for vinifera grapes, as do other great rivers in premium winegrowing areas worldwide.  Although few grapes are grown in Idaho's spectacular north country (referred to as the "Panhandle"), the six wineries currently located there create distinctive wines from many fine vineyards located in the Snake River Valley and Eastern Washington.

       Most Idaho wineries are small and only a few have a presence on the wine lists of restaurants outside the state -- although that number is growing.  Likewise, Idaho wines are somewhat scarce on the shelves of wine shops outside the local area.  The best and most rewarding way to access a wide array of Idaho's distinctive wines is to plan a visit to the winery tasting rooms themselves. 

       Use the information provided here to create your own custom tour of this diverse state; explore the expanse and beauty of its lands and discover the flavors of various terroir in wines produced from various grape-growing regions. Be sure to take home a few bottles to share with and impress your friends.

For a complete, up-to-date list of Idaho wineries and contact information,
visit our Winery Finder page for this state. 



Navigating Idaho Wine Country
 

   The map and links below allow you to explore the wines and wineries of each of Idaho's wine producing areas.  You will also find lodging, dining, special events and touring opportunities organized within these regions. Click on the region of your choice below.

    

Link to Snake River Valley Wine Country section        Link to main wine country page for northern Idaho and its Panhandle   

 

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Copyright © 1997 - December, 2014   Susan R. O'Hara.
All rights reserved. 
Last revised:  12/02/2014

 
Idaho
Wine Facts

Number of Wineries

2013 - 51 wineries
2010 - 40+ wineries
2008 - 32 wineries
2006 - 23 wineries
2003 - 15 wineries
1998 - 13 wineries

Vinifera Acreage

2013 - 1,
500
2006 - 1,500   
2003 - 1,300   
   1998  -   820      

Major Varietals Produced
Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, Fumé Blanc, Gewürztraminer,
Lemberger, Merlot,
Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir,
Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Syrah

Other Varietals
Malbec, Petite Syrah,
Petite Verdot, Tempranillo,
Tinta Cão, Touriga Nacional,
Touriga Francesa, Zinfandel

Leading Varietals
Chardonnay, Riesling,
Cabernet Sauvignon

Wine Styles
Still Wines
Sparkling Wines
Fruit Wines & Brandies
Ice Wines & Late-Harvest

Idaho's wine industry contributed $73 million to the state's economy in 2012.

Link to Wines Northwest Contact page