When most of us think of visiting wine country, it’s at least a plane ride away or a few days drive. The great wine regions of the world are not around the corner from Jackson, but that might be changing.
Cinder Winery in the Snake Rive Valley, Idaho is making that change. I’ll admit, I am always skeptical of Idaho wines- rarely do I see a good one. However, when I met Joe Schnerr, part owner of Cinder, I knew these wines were going to be something different. Joe’s wife, Melanie, is the winemaker and has quite the background in plant biology, winery management, and wine-making. Having worked extensively in Washington state wineries including Chateau Ste Michelle, she wanted to start her own venture where she grew up.
In 2006, Cinder was born. Sourcing grapes from local vineyards, Joe and Melanie are able to pick the best of the best in the Snake River Valley. They produce their wines in the Urban Winemakers Cooperative- a warehouse they found, converted into a winery, and now share with two other wineries.
Producing up to ten different wines per year, the ones that really shine are the Dry Viognier, Chardonnay, Syrah, and Laissez Faire- a red blend table wine. All of their wines are well-balanced and delicate. Pairing well with foods and great on their own, these wines speak for themselves. Plus to visit, it’s only half a day’s drive!