Platte City area winery wins gold medal

Platte City-based Jowler Creek Winery recently was awarded a gold medal from the Botanical Research Institute of Texas 2019 International Award of Excellence in the sustainable wine growing competition.

Submitted photo Jowler Creek owners Jason and Colleen Gerke displayed the gold medal the company recently won.

Submitted photo
Jowler Creek owners Jason and Colleen Gerke displayed the gold medal the company recently won.

The award was created to honor wineries that are implementing sustainable practices and sharing their lessons.

This competition focuses on taste and the winery’s application of sustainability: environmental, economic and social.

“From their work in the field and wine production to Jowler’s social program for its workforce and community outreach with the Eco Trail program, they are to be commended,” Chris Chilton, director of marketing and public relation for BRIT said in a press release. “The bottle of Estate Norton was also a fine example of how taste matches such a great program. Honestly, it raised the eyebrows of the judges.”

Jowler Creek Vineyard and Winery became Missouri’s first ‘green’ winery more than a decade ago. The company uses a small flock of sheep to ‘mow’ weeds under the vines, which helps eliminate the use of herbicides and improves soil health. Bees and bats are also part of the landscape.

Solar power is used to electrify the fence around the vineyard, while all skins, stems and seeds from the winemaking process are composted to help the soil.

In the winery, the bottles are lightweight, recycled glass, partnering with Ripple Glass and Mid-America Regional Council Soil Waste Management District to recycle as much packing material as possible.

The E&J Gallo Winery from California was the only other United State-based company to win a gold medal. There were two winners from Italy and one from Portugal.