Iowa wine has been growing into a popular product as over 40 wineries have opened in the state. Even though the land may not be the same as the Napa Valley or other iconic wine countries, local wines have gained a following around the area as more stores have been electing to carry the different brands.
Kathy Sorbe of Elements has been a supporter of local Iowa wines as well as a wine taster. Elements has a growing selection of wines and has started holding wine tasting parties as well.
"There are so many great local wines and some people are just now starting to discover them," Sorbe said.
The wine selection and sales have steadily grown for Elements.
"We do not just sell wine but we also have a lot of wine drinking accessories," Sorbe said. "I know that we are not the only ones selling wines or having wine tastings, they are growing all around the area."
The wine tastings that Elements has hosted have stirred growing interest.
"We've had a lot of returners who are starting to recognize each other and are starting to become friends," Sorbe said.
Each wine tasting features a small selection of different wines, allowing people to sample a couple of the local products each time.
Sorbe and her staff will teach people in the proper techniques of tasting wine and also have information on each wine.
"It's not like we are giving you a full glass - it's a sample to allow a person to savor the taste of the wine, not something to get drunk on," Sorbe smiles.
According to the store owner, wine tasting is also a growing hobby, especially among the young adult generations.
"It's becoming more popular among the younger people because they are wanting to develop a higer quality of their taste for wine," Sorbe said.
Sorbe also added that a new popular weekend retreat is to visit wineries for a sampling of the different products.
"There are so many wineries within a day's drive of here it can be a nice weekend getaway or a Sunday outing," Sorbe said. "The different wineries are so open willing to tell you about the different technologies involved with wine making, compared to what you would find in California that would be more protective."
Some people who are interested in wine tasting may have concerns about prices, but expense need not be a stumbling block, according to Sorbe.
"There are many fine wines that are made that do not have to cost a lot money," Sorbe said.
Elements will have a wine tasting February 8 at 6:30 p.m. Interested persons may call the store to sign up.