Liquid Art Winery and Estate was built on a foundation of dreams from David and Danielle Tegtmeier.
David and Danielle are Kansas natives and met while they were students at Kansas State University in 2007. Danielle is a 2011 K-State alumna in business marketing. David transferred to Fresno State University in 2009 and graduated there in 2011 with degrees in enology and viticulture.
“David studied [abroad] in France while he was at K-State and realized the soil profile between Manhattan, Kansas and Bordeaux, France are almost identical,” Danielle said in an email interview. “He always knew he wanted to build a winery in Manhattan. It was just a question of when and where.”
David’s passion for winemaking began when he planted his first vineyard in 2006.
“David enjoys the winemaking process,” Danielle said. “Each year’s grape crop brings new challenges and differences, and he enjoys the chemistry behind the scenes.”
In 2014, David and Danielle began the process of creating Liquid Art Winery and Estate.
“We found the property on Wildcat Creek Road in 2014,” Danielle said. “After doing soil profile testing, David knew the soil was perfect for a vineyard. The location of being in close proximity to Manhattan, K-State and Ft. Riley was also ideal.”
Before working full time at Liquid Art Winery, David and Danielle lived in Firestone, Colorado. While living in Colorado, David worked as the head cider maker and operations manager for Wild Cider, while Danielle worked as a wine and liquor sales representative.
They decided to purchase the land in March 2014. When the land was bought, the property was covered in cedar trees, which required clearing more than 100 acres of land.
For eight months, they commuted to Kansas almost every weekend to work on the venue.
“We worked sun up to sun down to prep the land, lay miles of in-ground irrigation, etcetera,” Danielle said.
They moved back to Manhattan and worked at Liquid Art full-time in September 2014.
“Everyone that met us thought we were two crazy children with a big dream that seemed impossible,” Danielle said. “Now, everyone is able to see and appreciate all the sweat equity it took to build Liquid Art.”
Liquid Art Winery and Estate is a full-production winery, including a tasting room and event center.
“We love visiting with our guests that visit the Tasting Room,” Danielle said. “We have had guests from all over the world visit.”
The groundwork for the winery was laid in August 2015. The winery’s event center opened in April 2016, and the grand opening for the tasting room was in July 2016.
In May 2015, Liquid Art hosted a planting party, which consisted of about 100 volunteers who helped plant 7,000 grapevines in the estate vineyard.
“The process of creating a winery required education, ambition and a little bit of crazy,” Danielle said.
David and Danielle gained the opportunity to share their passion for grape growing and winemaking with Manhattan, as well as those not from the area.
“Liquid Art benefits Manhattan by bringing an experience that is very unique,” Danielle said. “We often get guests that have lived in Kansas all their lives and never knew Kansas had views such as ours. We want people to visit our winery for the experience of not only seeing the Flint Hills but seeing a different form of agriculture and enjoying the fruits of the labor.”
Guests at Liquid Art Winery and Estate are welcomed with quality wine and good service.
“It’s the quality of the wine, the venue is spectacular and the owners are the most hospitable people you could ever want to meet.” Brett DePaola, Liquid Art Winery and Estate visitor, professor of physics and interim physics department head, said.
Liquid Art Winery and Estate provides the opportunity for guests to socialize and connect with others while enjoying wine and surrounded by the vineyard’s scenery.
“The winery adds to our quality of life,” Josefa Ben-Arieh, Liquid Art Winery and Estate visitor and Manhattan resident, said. “Such a wonderful place to come and spend an evening with our friends.”
Whether it is a casual gathering or social event, Liquid Art Winery and Estate provides a unique experience for its guests.
“It provides a quiet place where you go to make good friends, drinks lots of good wine, enjoy the scenery,” David Ben-Arieh, Liquid Art Winery and Estate visitor and professor of industrial and manufacturing systems engineering, said. “If you have good friends, bring them here to enjoy an evening of friendship and wine.”
Liquid Art Winery and Estate is open Thursdays from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays from noon to 9 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 6 p.m.