MADE IN ILLINOIS: Award winning wines

Alto Vineyards wines are grown and produced  in the little Southern Illinois village of Alto Pass. Alto Vineyards is a family owned business employing its' third generation of Renzaglia's. In addition to the Renzaglia Family it employs 18-20 people to maintain its Winery, Vineyard and Retail operation.

From the Vine to the Wine
In 1982, Guy Renzaglia started the first commercial vineyard in Southern Illinois and Alto Vineyards grape growing operation began in a most unlikely way. He planted French-American hybrid grapes in an area where most doubted they could survive. Instead, the vineyard, which was located on a 13 acre patch of land in rural Alto Pass in southern Illinois, thrived and grew.

In 1986, Guy and Paul Renzaglia sold their first harvest of grapes to Lynfred Winery in Roselle, Illinois. Two years later in 1988 they opened the doors of Alto Vineyards (only the sixth Winery in the State at that time) and released their first vintage of Illinois grown and produced wines. After opening the winery in December of that year, Alto Vineyards sold 1500 gallons of wine in 3 days, selling out their stock and requiring them to shut down until their next harvest and production season.  Following  Altos success  a burgeoning  Wine and Grape industry began to develop in Southern Illinois and across the State. With a phenomenal growth rate it now numbers 120 Wineries and 1000 acres of Grapes and accounts for over $900 million in additional revenue to our State.

For six years, Guy Renzaglia and his son Paul continued to build their operation and began to win medals in International Wine Competitions. Their Chambourcin, a dry red wine, was widely recognized at the time as one of the finest wines in the entire country. Their Chambourcin has continued to lead the country in wine quality for nearly 3 decades. In 2014 alone, their Chambourcin won Gold Medals at the Great Lakes Wine Competition, the Illinois State Fair Wine Competition, and the INDY International Wine Competition.

Alto Vineyards now produces 22 varieties of red, white and rose’ wines.  Alto Vineyards Wines have won more than 1000 National and International Awards in wine competitions across the U. S. The Family co-owner and manager, Paul Renzaglia, has won the prized Illinois Winemaker of the Year
Award twice.

"The Renzaglia family is a major producer of wine in southern Illinois. As a part of the Shawnee Hills Wine Trail, Alto Vineyards Winery produces some of the highest quality wines in America, made from grapes grown right here in southern Illinois," said State Rep. Terri Bryant. "Their many varieties have won medals in international competitions for many years. I am proud to support Alto Vineyards and thank them for increasing tourism in southern Illinois and for contributing positively to our economy."

"We should do all we can to encourage this type of small business and to promote the positive things we have to offer in our state," Bryant added.

Award Winning Wine Selection
Alto Vineyards places a premium on the quality of the grapes that they grow. High quality grapes make for high quality wine. Impressively, Alto produces a large selection of various types and blends of wines. 21 of the 22 Alto Vineyards Wine varieties have won either a bronze, silver, or gold medal at various International Wine Competitions throughout Illinois and the U.S.