KSU Student Winemakers Partner with Laurello Vineyards on Ice Wine

Education doesn’t get much sweeter — or more chill — than this.


Kent State University Ashtabula, in collaboration with Laurello Vineyards in Geneva, has released a new ice wine, “17°” (Seventeen Degrees). It is the third wine in the lineup of the Kent State Ashtabula Wines brand, which gives student enologists-in-training valuable hands-on, real-world experience.


The limited-release wine, made from grapes grown in the Grand River Valley appellation, made its debut during the Geneva Winterfest in early February and continued its coming-out party during The Wineries of the Grand River Valley 15th Annual Ice Wine Festival in the region in March. 


“It’s significant to have an ice wine under the Kent State Ashtabula Wines label, because ice wine is one of the wines that we produce very well in Ohio,” says Kent State Ashtabula Viticulture and Enology lecturer Ed Trebets. “And having a great ice wine gives credibility to our students, the academic programs and our university.”


KSU Ashtabula launched its partnership with Laurello Vineyards in November 2017 to expand educational opportunities for students in the university’s wine-degrees program. Students participate in all aspects of grape-growing and winemaking. 


The first two wines released under the partnership were Sunburst, a Grand River Riesling; and Sunset, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc.


“Both the Sunset and Sunburst wines have been very good sellers, and we expect 17° to do well too,” said Kim Laurello, owner of Laurello Vineyards. “Ice wines are very popular in the region, and it’s very rewarding for the students to see their work in the process come to fruition. We are thrilled at how the partnership is working out and having the students around the vineyard.”


The wine is available for purchase at Laurello Vineyards, which also can sell and ship the wine within the state of Ohio.

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