Archive for Wednesday, November 26, 2003

Winery receives national attention

November 26, 2003

Don't expect the quality over quantity theme at HolyField Winery in Basehor to change when a current flurry of national media exposure dies down, said Michelle Meyer, part-owner and operator.

"Nope, not a thing," said Meyer, fresh from the production cellar where she was busy bottling wine. "Our goal here is to sell wine, not sit on it."

The family-owned, 14-acre vineyard and winery, located at 18807 158th St. in Basehor, is featured prominently in a book released this month titled "Wine Report 2004." And at the beginning of next year, HolyField will be featured on a program called "The Insider's List" on the Fine Living Network.

"I think people are starting to understand we're more than just a novelty item," said Meyer, who with her father, Les Meyer, has owned and operated the winery for the past nine years.

In "Wine Report 2004", the local winery is ranked on five top-10 lists of wineries in the country save for those operations on the Pacific and Atlantic coasts.

"Basically, the lists are for wineries in the guts of America," Michelle Meyer said.

The rankings, according to the book, include No. 1 rankings for new and upcoming producers, best value producers and best bargains (Seyval Blanc 2001, $10). HolyField ranked No. 3 in fastest improving producers and No. 7 for greatest quality wines (late harvest Vignoles 2001, $13 per half bottle).

"Isn't that something," Michelle Meyer said. "This is a really big deal for us."

As for the Insider's List program, she said the show's host, Tim Gasier, a wine sommelier or expert, requested HolyField be a part of the program, which will air early next year and feature "wineries near you."

Although the lofty praise for HolyField has been well received, don't expect the Meyerses to sit on their laurels.

The father-daughter combination is the sole labor force for the winery and vineyard, working seven days a week to nurture, enhance and parent their grapes. Rest or slacking off isn't an option the duo has, Michelle Meyer said.

Although the winter months are upon us, she said they are busy bottling wine and will start pruning grape vines after Thanksgiving in preparation for a busy year ahead.

HolyField wines cost from $7.95 to $14.95 a bottle. A gift shop is open seven days a week, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays, and from noon to 6 p.m. Sundays.

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