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Indiana wines performed well in the 2017 Indy International Wine Competition at Purdue University. Nearly 2000 wines were entered from 11 countries and 40 states were considered, according to the competition’s website.

The competition has become something of a measuring stick for Hoosier winemakers as they stack up their product against other states not named California, Oregon, or Washington. Wines do come into the competition from the big three but not in significant numbers.

The competition, hosted by Purdue, does have Indiana categories as well as national award winners. Many Indiana wineries scored multiple medals from the 50 judges from across the country. You can go online to look up the wins for your favorite Hoosier winery.

With Vintage Indiana in downtown Indy tomorrow (June 3), I checked out some top winners and whether they’ll be at Vintage this year.


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Country Heritage wines scored big.

Top honors – or the Indiana Governor’s Cup – went to relative newcomer Country Heritage Winery and Vineyard, LaOtto, In., (near Fort Wayne.) Heritage had won Indiana Farm Winery of the Year the past two competitions. Heritage won three double gold medals (top honor), 12 Golds, 15 silvers, and 12 bronze.The farm winery award is for wineries producing less than 50,000 gallons of wine annually. This year’s Farm Winery of the Year was Buck Creek Winery, just south of Indianapolis along I-74.


The Indiana Wine of the Year was won by French Lick Winery for their estate-bottled Cabernet Franc. The Indiana Traminette of the Year (the state grape) was Tonne Winery’s CF2016 vintage. Tonne is located just north of Muncie.

Buck Creek won best dessert wine of the competition with its 2014 Vidal Blanc Ice Wine. Brown County won the contest’s best fruit wine with its 2016 Strawberry Wine.

A few of the usual suspects did well as expected. Huber Winery, which has claimed several Governor’s Cups, won 23 medals. Oliver Winery claimed 28 awards.

The competition also has a category for amateur winemakers. The amateur Wine of the Year was won by David Phillips of Sugar Creek Vineyards (just outside Crawfordsville). Phillips’ winning entry was a 2016 Chambourcin Rose’.

Of those winning awards, Buck Creek and French Lick are the only two pouring at Vintage according to the Vintage website.

Many Indiana wineries won multiple awards. Check out the details online.