Marshall County Couple Expected To Open County’s First Winery
Marshall County is expected to have its first commercial winery by fall 2020. The winery is named Poca Terra, Italian for small land. John and Karen Hlinka of Marshall County received their winery licensing last month.
The couple manages a quarter-acre vineyard and harvests grapes with family and friends. The Hlinkas saw a grape harvest of 100 pounds when they began in 2014, and they expect to see a quality crop around 3,000 pounds this year.
The Hlinkas moved to Marshall County 32 years ago, and are excited to give people around the area a new experience.
“It's really about the experience you have with that winery, and what I envision us doing is really focusing on that educational aspect,” Karen Hlinka said. “That experience of being in a vineyard and making wine. I think that’s something special we can kind of bring to this area.”
Karen said it was her husband’s idea to start to the winery. She said John’s great grandfather immigrated to Chicago from Italy, and his grandfather’s first purchase in the states was a large wooden wine press, that has since been passed down to John. She said the antique press was the inspiration for the winery, and is still used in their own wine making.
Karen said future plans for Poca Terra Winery include restoring a 100-year-old stock barn on the property to be used as an event center. She said community feedback has been positive and believes Marshall County is ready for this.