Nov. 25, 2015

Idaho Gains New Viticultural Designation

by Moya Shatz Dolsby

The Idaho wine community gained an important new designation with the approval of the Eagle Foothills American Viticultural Area (AVA). An AVA is a federally designated wine grape-growing region distinguishable by distinct geographic features such as climate, soil, elevation and physical features. Conditions and grapes grown within this geographic region cannot be replicated.

Previously, Idaho vineyards were lumped together within the Snake River Valley AVA—one that spans through Idaho and eastern Oregon. The Eagle Foothills is the first AVA to be located completely within the boundaries of the state of Idaho, as well as the first sub-AVA of the Snake River Valley AVA.

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Dec. 17, 2015

Idaho Wines Are No Small Potatoes

Idaho is famous for potatoes. Now the state’s swelling ranks of winemakers want to put Idaho’s wines on the culinary map. So far, they appear to be making headway.

Just ask Andy Perdue, wine writer for the Seattle Times and editor and publisher of the website Great Northwest Wine. He compares Idaho’s wine making with that of its more famous neighbor, Washington.

“They’re kind of at a place where Washington was in the early to mid-’90s as far as size and quality. That was the turning point for Washington. It’s an interesting time to keep an eye on that industry, because the wines coming out of Idaho are on the rise and getting better and better.”

Dec. 10, 2015

Built in Boise: Rescuing Forgotten Film to Innovating Instruments

by Built in Boise

The writers, photographers, designers, builders and business-owners at Built in Boise have connected with more Boise companies to share their stories and the people behind them. From rescuing forgotten film to innovating traditional instruments, here is the roundup of profiles from November and December…

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Jan. 15, 2015

St. Chapelle Winery Updates Tasting Room

St. Chapelle, a name synonymous with Idaho wine, has been working over the last year to renovate their space. The renovations are expected to be complete in February include a new deck to seat 150, and 1,800-square-foot banquet room, a new bar and kitchen and a newly remodeled tasting room. 

Jan. 15, 2016

Sunset: Idaho, a State Poised for Winemaking Greatness

Let’s say one of your New Year’s resolutions was to explore a new wine region. Can I suggest Idaho? With more than 50 wineries and a growing amount of serious winemaking talent on the ground, this is a state poised for greatness.

What’s behind the potential here? The bulk of Idaho’s vineyards are in the Snake River Vally, east of Boise. (Expect a few strip malls and housing developments on the 45-minute-or-so drive out there.) This is high desert. The winters are cold; the summers are warm. But during that warm growing season, the temperature always drops drastically at night—there might be a 40, 50, even 60 degree difference between day and night. So while the sugar levels rise in the grapes during the day, the cool nights let the vines hoard their acid levels. And acidity is crucial to good (bright, interesting) wine.

Nov. 19, 2015

7 Awesome U.S. Wine Destinations That Aren’t Napa

When it comes to finding good wine, we generally think of Napa, France, Italy or Spain. Problem is, those are big trips. So we did a little research and found that fancy European-quality wine can be had all over the country, maybe even right in your backyard. Consider these seven American locales the next time you’re pining for a tasting.

Best Malbec: Snake River Valley, Oregon and Idaho

Jul. 28, 2016

Wineries in the Boise, ID Area: Thriving Under the Radar

I recently had the opportunity to sample some amazing wines from a region that I didn't even know existed. The wines ranged from delightfully dry Merlots and Syrahs to light and fruity whites, including my favorite Rhine wine: Riesling.  There are more than fifty wineries scattered across four regions of the state. In 2013, they collectively produced more than 200,000 cases of wine.

According to the Idaho Wine Commission, grapes for wine were first produced in the state in the 1860s, but 17 years of Prohibition shuttered the fledgling industry. It was not until the mid-1970s that grapes again were planted amid the microclimates tucked away in the scenic valleys and foothills of the Gem State.

Other than the wine, Boise has quite a bit to offer. It has energy, plenty of outdoor activity and is the ideal place to start your Idaho adventure.

Aug. 16, 2017

Fast-Growing Boise Has a Wine and Food Scene to Match

The vinous vistas of Boise, Idaho, may not be most wine lovers’ first thought for a travel destination, but its location in the middle of the up-and-coming Snake River Valley AVA is the ideal base from which to check out the area’s wine country. Boise’s blend of urban savvy, proximity to nature and entrepreneurial streak means the city—one of the 20 fastest-growing in the U.S.—won’t stay unsung for long.

Dec. 2, 2015

Wine Sense: Eyes On Idaho

Wine industry folks in Idaho don’t take themselves too seriously. The Idaho Wine Commission website features a satirical video, titled “Idaho … More Than Just Wine.” Yet Idaho wineries, which produce more than 200,000 cases a year, make serious wines.

Ideal terroir and top winemakers produce world-class wines in the Gem State.