Oklahoma Winery Makes History At International Competition
MUSKOGEE, Oklahoma - A Muskogee winery is excited about its historic win at a recent international wine competition.
Oklahoma winemaker D.I. Wilkinson is no stranger to victory, but he said he and his business partner still realized they were the underdogs since Oklahoma is no Napa Valley.
"I've had quite a bit of wine here in Arkansas and Oklahoma, and I thought it was awful," Wilkinson said.
They took their chances and shipped off a bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon to compete against the best of the best in California.
"I know it was a blind tasting because I feel that if the California people had picked it up and saw Oklahoma on our label, they probably would've just thrown it to the side and never tasted it," he said.
Wilkinson said they may never have done it if a California winemaker hadn't taken a sip.
"The winemaker from California said, 'Well you've gotta promise me one thing. You've gotta take it to the San Francisco wine festival this coming year.'" Wilkinson said. "It's one of the largest wine festivals in the world. They had over 7,000 entries."
It's been a big undertaking for Pecan Creek Winery, overcoming Oklahoma's not-so-perfect winemaking conditions for this type of wine.
"Notoriously they don't do well here because of the harsh winters," Wilkinson said.
Regardless, Wilkinson says they were confident, but still completely thrilled when they found out they were the first Oklahomans to grow their own grapes and win, taking home the bronze medal.
"We're very proud of it," he said. "My wife tells me I'm having too much fun. And I think that's good."