MAIDEN ROCK WINERY & CIDERY
Presenting a unique collection of premium hard ciders & fruit wines, from fresh local fruit, flavored by Wisconsin.
W12266 King Lane ~ Stockholm, WI ~ 54769
715.448.3502 Land 612.618.0512 Cell 715.448.4446 Fax
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ABOUT MAIDEN ROCK WINERY & CIDERY
Herdie Baisden of Maiden Rock Winery & Cidery is often asked how he got into making these products, and his usual answer is that it started as a hobby. This is partly true, in that he started as a homebrewer with the purchase of a wine starter kit around 2002. Several years before then, however, Herdie and his wife Carol Wiersma had purchased an 80-acre farm outside the village of Stockholm, Wisconsin, to establish an apple orchard. The apple varieties they planted included a number that are more often grown in southwestern England and were suitable for the production of hard cider and wine. So, from the beginning of their farming venture, Herdie and Carol planned to produce products made from fermented apple juice as well as fresh fruit, preserves, and baked goods.
Being new to agriculture required them to get up to speed quickly on what they needed to know to be successful. They crafted a business plan which focused around agricultural tourism and designed the orchard to make it easy for people to pick their own apples. Doing what Herdie calls “going to apple school”, he joined both the Wisconsin and Minnesota apple growers associations and gathered knowledge from attending field days and conferences and – most importantly – talking with other growers and getting consultation from UW Extension experts. Subsequently he was voted onto the board of the Wisconsin Apple Growers Association and served as president. Carol joined the Wisconsin Agricultural Tourism Association, was voted onto the board, and also served as its president.
On the way to developing the winery and cidery, Herdie began producing fresh-pressed unpasteurized non-alcoholic cider – using hard cider techniques. The result was award winning products for several years, in the state-wide Apple Cider Contest, sponsored by the Wisconsin Apple Growers Association.
With their trees bearing fruit and a growing customer base, they were ready to take the next steps to establish their winery and cidery. They positioned their business as an award-winning cider orchard presenting a unique collection of premium hard ciders and wines – produced from fresh local fruit – flavored by Wisconsin.
It took about two years to ramp up and open the doors in July 2008. At that time they had only two products under their label, an apple wine, Harvest Apple, and a hard cider, Lake Pepin. Since then they have produced a number of ciders and wines with a range of flavor profiles and characters.
Their signature offerings are classic hard ciders crafted in the farmhouse tradition of southwestern England like their Scrumpy, Somerset Cider, Bitter Love, Lake Pepin, Kingston Black, and their most recent release, Honeycrisp Hard™ apple cider. They also craft a number of apple table wines – including their award-winning Dolgo Crabapple, Eau Claire, and Harvest Apple wines. Their grape wines include Stockholm Red, Stockholm White, and Frontenac Nouveau – as well as a grape-apple blend, Apfelwein.
They take pride in their products being flavored by Wisconsin. This is more than a theme; it is central to their business model. All of their wines and ciders use juice from fruits that t are locally produced in Wisconsin. Even the honey they use in some of their products is produced by the same bees they bring in to pollinate their apple blossoms.
As a member and director of the Wisconsin Winery Association, Herdie has continued to draw upon the professional expertise of fellow wine makers. He is one of the founding members and president of the Badger State Winery Cooperative. Maiden Rock Winery & Cidery is also one of the founding members of the Great River Road Wine Trail, a wine trail linking wineries in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Iowa. They are also memeber of the Lake Pepin Wine Trail.