Best Wineries in Iowa


When it comes to wine production, Iowa may not be as well-known as other parts of the country, but this state is full of fun wineries to visit, all serving up unique varietals to taste. As one of the top agricultural states, Iowa’s fertile soil produces corn, soybeans, hay, oats and more, so it makes sense that certain varieties of grapes could grow well here too. 

If you’re planning a trip through Iowa, it simply wouldn’t be complete without a tour of a local winery. No matter your taste in wine, you’re sure to find something you like among the high-quality wineries in Iowa. 

Wine Varieties in Iowa

With its location in the heart of the midwest, Iowa hosts some harsh weather conditions year-round, with cold, snowy winters and hot, humid summers. While this climate can make it difficult to grow some of the wine varietals you may be familiar with, such as Chardonnay or Cabernet Sauvignon, other grape varieties more common to the midwest flourish in Iowa’s fertile growing regions. 

At the top wineries in Iowa, some of the most popular varietals include: 

  • Frontenac
  • Vignoles
  • LaCrescent
  • Marquette
  • La Crosse
  • Briana

These are mostly hybrid varieties of grapes that have been proven to have success in the midwestern climate. It’s important to note that these wine varieties may taste a little sweeter than some of the more familiar varieties from well-known wine-producing regions, like Northern California. 

That being said, Iowa produces a wide variety of exquisite wines and boasts nearly 100 wineries and more than 250 vineyards throughout the state. 

Wineries to Visit in Iowa

A trip to this state just wouldn’t be complete without a few stops at Iowa’s top wineries. If you love wine tasting, this is the list for you. We’ve compiled our favorite wineries in Iowa — stop by one for a tasting or visit them all! 

Park Farm Winery

If you want rolling, scenic views with your wine tasting, Park Farm Winery is the place to be. You’ll love the gorgeous outdoor areas with beautiful views of Iowa’s Driftless Region. Choose from various wines and try the brick-oven pizzas and delicious appetizers that pair perfectly with the wines. Don’t miss the Prairie Series of wines, made from Marechal Foch grapes, one of the first varieties of grapes to be planted in the area.

Cedar Ridge Winery and Distillery

For the full winery experience, Cedar Ridge Winery and Distillery has it all. Located in Swisher, IA, in what’s known as the Corn Belt, here you’ll find an extensive list of wines to sample, from sweet and fresh young wines to more robust and aged premier options. In addition to wine, Cedar Ridge also produces award-winning whiskey and a variety of other fine spirits, all available for tasting.

Enjoy a glass of wine or an expertly mixed cocktail in the tasting room, or on the extensive patio and lawn areas. Stay for lunch or dinner and pair your beverage with a wood-fired pizza or any of the other rustic, gourmet menu options. Live music and other events are often featured – check their calendar for details.

Eagles Landing Winery

At Eagles Landing Winery in Marquette, IA, the team has set its sights on producing the highest quality wines in the area and being one of the best wineries in Iowa. You’re sure to find a variety to enjoy here, from their list of 36 award-winning options from dry to sweet and everything in between. Eagles Landing also features peaceful views and live music events.

Stone Cliff Winery

Any history buff or architecture lover will enjoy the tasting room at Stone Cliff Winery. Located inside the gorgeous and historic Dubuque Star Brewery building, Stone Cliff Winery features a wine shop, tasting room and an event venue. Stop by for lunch during the week and enjoy fresh salads, sandwiches, soups, pizzas and more. Try a wine flight featuring five delicious wines to sample while enjoying views of the Mississippi and the historic train bridge.

Jasper Winery

If the clean lines of modern styling and innovative new wines are more your speed, Jasper Winery in Des Moines makes for a stunning stop on any Iowa wine tour. Sample the variety of wines in the gorgeous tasting room here, along with a selection of beer, cider, sangria and sodas. Complete your tasting with a cheese tray.

If you can’t get enough wine during your stop, join the JW club and have wine delivered right to your door, along with other membership perks.

Fireside Winery

In Marengo, IA, Fireside Winery offers up a variety of fun activities and events alongside their selection of amazing wines. Choose from the menu of cheese boards and other snacks and try the recommended wine pairing for each!

Fireside Winery boasts an impressive array of fun events throughout the year, including live music, food trucks, farmers’ markets and more. You can even stay on-site at “The Retreat” — the winery’s own Airbnb!

Madison County Winery

Located in St. Charles, IA, right alongside the famous covered bridges, Madison County Winery is a great stop on any Iowa wine tour. The fun tasting room here and huge outdoor patio feature sweeping views of the Iowa countryside make it a popular destination. Enjoy a cheese platter or gourmet chocolate platter while you sip on your selection of fine wine. The patio and vineyard at Madison County Winery are dog-friendly too!

Wide River Winery

With three locations across Iowa, Wide River Winery provides unique options that fit in with just about any wine tour! The original location in Clinton features some of the most beautiful views of the area, but the tasting rooms at all of the locations make for fun stops on your tour.

Each location features a delectable menu of small bites to pair with the variety of wines on offer. Enjoy the beautiful views and fun atmosphere, along with music and other live events and tours. Wide River Winery also offers private events and two options for overnight stays if you want to extend the wine tour experience.

Plan Your Iowa Wine Tour With CIT Signature Transportation

To make your Iowa wine tour even better, plan on safe group travel with CIT Signature Transportation. We have a fleet of buses and vans ready to drive you and your group anywhere in the state. Tour as many of the best wineries to visit in Iowa as you’d like, without worrying about the drive home.

For safe, reliable travel, contact us today to start planning your wine tour.

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