Winery Story

Wollersheim Winery, located on a scenic hillside overlooking the Wisconsin River, has been part of the Midwest’s wine legacy since Wisconsin achieved statehood.

1972 Wollersheim

Bob & JoAnn Wollersheim

1984 Wollersheim

Philippe & Julie Coquard

The winery property was first planted with vineyards in the 1840s by the Hungarian nobleman Agoston Haraszthy, who later helped found the California wine industry. Both wine and brandy were made at the winery until Prohibition, after which the property was used for traditional Wisconsin dairy farming.

In 1972, the Wollersheim family purchased the winery property and resumed winemaking. Wisconsin was not known as a wine-growing state at the time, but through founder Bob Wollersheim’s determination in the vineyard, the winery also grew its reputation as an industry leader. Wollersheim experimented with new, cold-hardy grape varieties and found what was best-suited for growing in Wisconsin’s climate.

In 1984, current Wollersheim Winemaker Philippe Coquard arrived at the winery from France. Coming from many generations of winemakers, he brought a zeal for quality and a finely-tuned palate. Among Coquard’s contributions to the winery are the creation of the popular Prairie Fumé™ wine in 1989 and the authentic, 100%-Wisconsin Coquard Brandy in 2013.

Wollersheim Winery is a National Historic Site and has earned local and international recognition at wine competitions with multiple Double-Gold awards. The winery also received the honors of Winery of the Year (2012) and Wine of the Year (for Dry Riesling, 2013) from the prestigious San Diego International Wine Competition, as well as Small Winery of the Year (2015) from the Riverside International Wine Competition. The winery continues to be a leader in the Midwest wine industry.