A little history...
Ron and Linda Mark opened Summerset Winery in the summer of 1997 and became one of the first estate wineries in Iowa. They began growing grapes on the scenic Summerset ridge above the Middle River in 1989. Ron experimented with several grape varieties in order to find what could withstand the cold Iowa winters and thrive in central Iowa. The first yield was processed in 1993 and the idea of Iowa wine was realized.
In 1997 the winery opened its doors to the public via the owners’ home. The basement was redesigned into a tasting room and the wine production occurred in the modified garage. As the popularity of the winery grew, so did the need for a larger production facility. Since 2001, the winery has resided in a large, upscale barn that was designed to house a cellar, wine tasting room, private or corporate event hall, meeting room, gift shop, and grand banquet hall.
Today the winery is nestled on 12 acres of vineyard just 7 miles south of Des Moines and twenty minutes from the downtown area. The driveway winds through the vineyard and concludes at the winery and tasting room. Summerset Winery’s estate offers an oasis of lush landscaping, expansive decks and terraces. The winery is host to many group tours, special events, wedding ceremonies and receptions, as well as live music every Sunday afternoon. The Arbor House provides the perfect backdrop for wedding ceremonies and concerts. During the summer months, the green grass is laden with lawn umbrellas that offer shade to the wine enthusiasts enjoying picnics and live outdoor concerts. From the back patio, guests can enjoy the picturesque flora as well as the downtown Des Moines skyline.