DABC approves winery in Hildale

Posted at 10:39 AM, Aug 26, 2014
and last updated 2014-08-26 12:40:09-04

SALT LAKE CITY — It seems the most unlikely location for a winery, but Utah’s liquor control commissioners approved a license application for one in the polygamous border town of Hildale.

At its meeting on Tuesday, the Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission approved a winery manufacturing license for Vintage Reserve Estates in Hildale. It would be the 14th winery in Utah.

“It’s one of the biggest, cleanest and best-equipped I’ve seen,” said Abe Kader, a compliance officer for the DABC. “It’s quite an impressive operation.”

Kader told FOX 13 that five people own the winery: two from Colorado City, and three from Hildale.

Vintage Reserves Estates will manufacture red wines and rose. They intend to sell through state liquor stores, Kader said.

The group also expressed an interest in eventually opening a package agency liquor store in Hildale, he told FOX 13.

Hildale and Colorado City are the strongholds for the Fundamentalist LDS Church led by Warren Jeffs. Culturally, members of the FLDS Church have been known to drink alcohol.

Jeffs is serving a life, plus 20-year sentence in a Texas prison for child sex assault related to underage marriages.