Cedar Ridge Winemaker Named 2022 Winemaker of the Year

SWISHER, IOWA (Feb. 23, 2022) – Cedar Ridge Winemaker Kent Foulker has been named 2022 Winemaker of the Year by the Iowa Winegrowers Association. The award was announced in conjunction with the 2022 Iowa Specialty Producers Conference on Feb. 9 and 10 in Ankeny, Iowa.

Winemaker of the Year honors an Iowa winemaker who has served as a leader in the wine industry by crafting superior Iowa wines utilizing locally sourced products when possible, adhering to best practices of winemaking, and demonstrating a willingness to experiment and try new techniques while positively contributing to the industry as a whole.

“Receiving this award is a mixed bag of emotions,” said Kent Foulker, Cedar Ridge Winemaker. “When I came into this industry I knew very little about the local grapes and wines. One cannot go to the bookstore or library and easily find LaCrescent or Marquette grape information. My education came from the amazing Iowa winemaking community. It is their generosity of passing wisdom that gave me the tools to do what I do best. I also couldn’t do what I do without the direction of Jeff Quint. Jeff has given me an invaluable amount of past experience, wisdom, vision and freedom of direction,”

Foulker joined Cedar Ridge in 2015 and became Head Winemaker in 2017. A graduate of Kirkwood Community College’s Culinary Art Program, Foulker’s career highlights include the creation of three unique, award-winning Cedar Ridge wines: Nine Sixty-Five, Atlas, and recently released Madeira-inspired dessert wine called Cedar Ridge V.

The Iowa Wine Growers Association (IWGA) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the growth of the wine and grape industry in Iowa. Established in 2000, the Iowa Wine Growers Association (IWGA) supports the industry through education, marketing/promotion, and legislative support. Learn more about the Iowa Wine Growers Association at:
Cedar Ridge produces more than 16 different wines taking advantage of both estate-grown, French-American varietals, as well as several unique Iowa-made blends using grapes sourced from outside the state. With a focus on excellence, Cedar Ridge strives to produce some of the highest quality and some of best variety of wine the state has to offer.


Cedar Ridge is set amid rolling cornfields in bucolic Swisher, Iowa, which is located about a ten-minute drive from both Cedar Rapids and Iowa City. The winery and distillery is a favorite local attraction for tours and tastings, as well as excellent yet casual dining including brick-oven wood-fired pizzas; local vegetables, cheeses, and charcuterie; and Sunday Brunch. Live music generally plays on Friday evenings and Sunday afternoons, and other events include yoga, dinner theatre, and open-air painting, to name a few. Cedar Ridge is frequently rented for weddings and corporate events, with options including an event hall, the tasting room, a board room, and a newly renovated patio. Learn more at

Share this post