The idea for the vineyard began as a vision…After coming home from wine country, our founder sought out prime hilltop acreage in the rolling Shawnee Hills of Southern Illinois. He found just that at what is now Kite Hill Vineyards and purchased the land with the intention of planting wine grapes – all without consulting his wife. Upon hearing his plan she told him to “go fly a kite” and that name ended up sticking to the property. Ever since its start in the late 1990s, Kite Hill has been committed to producing wines of the highest quality possible from Shawnee Hills grapes. The first vintages were produced under contract at another local winery using grapes grown on our property. Jim and Barbara Bush purchased Kite Hill Vineyards in 2006, and under their leadership, the winery has continued to produce award-winning, world-class wines year after year. In 2010, Jim and Barb broke ground on a dedicated wine production facility, allowing us to produce our wines 100% on-site.
Our overall style is generally more focused on the ripe fruit flavors that can be coaxed from grape varieties that thrive in the Shawnee Hills AVA like Chambourcin, Chardonel, and Viognier. Winemaker Scott Albert uses state-of-the-art techniques to ferment these grapes into our acclaimed vintages.
Shawnee Hills became the first American Viticultural Area (AVA) in Illinois in 2006. This region is established as a unique grape-growing area in Southern Illinois. Our grape growers commit to every row, vine & grape cluster in their vineyard resulting in the purest expression of terroir.
Try the award-winning wines in a flight, sip a glass at the tasting room, or pick up a bottle for home.
Ways to Shop – You can purchase Kite Hill Wines online or in-store.
Fruit Forward – DTry the Broadwing! It is 60% Chardonel, producing spectacular flavors that showcase the terroir of the region. The other 40% is Viognier.
Passport Program – Your $20 digital passport gets you great discounts at all 11 wineries on the trail as well as 9 local businesses.