Our Mission

Famous Fossil wines are made at our winery from Illinois grown grapes. Our wines are a unique expression of the cold climate region of wine grape growing. With each vintage, we hope to create a dynamic and distinctive wine region, recognized for its delicious, interesting and well-balanced wines. Famous Fossil wines are made from some of the most recent releases of wine grape varieties as well as some tried and true varieties. Famous Fossil wines range from light to full bodied with varying complexity and are very food friendly.

Our Grapes

Famous Fossil Vineyard is home to twelve different varieties of cold climate grapes.  We also purchase grapes from vineyards throughout northern and central Illinois. We hope you will enjoy the distinctive flavors of Midwest American wines.

Our Land

Over 450 million years ago, the land that is now northern Illinois was at the bottom of a sea. Thousands of years ago glaciers crossed the land exposing fossils from this ancient seabed. The name Famous Fossil was inspired by the many fossils found while planting our vineyard in 2004.


Ken Rosmann


Ken farmed in Iowa for many years, certifying his crops and livestock as organic in 1987. Some of his crops were used to make organic tofu in Japan. It was the relationships that Ken developed with his Japanese friends that inspired him to make an end product that people can enjoy. Wine was a natural fit for Ken’s personality and skills – his ease with chemistry, his farming success and his great enjoyment of food, wine and friends. Ken began studying under winemakers, taking courses and making wine in earnest 16 years ago. He is a past president of Northern Illinois Wine Growers.


Pam Rosmann

Tasting Room | Event Planning

After careers in psychology and landscape architecture, Pam is currently in her third career as the chief wine taster. She also manages the tasting room and events room where businesses, clubs and families and friends meet to enjoy food and wine. Pam and Ken met when Pam was director of the Organic Agriculture Program in the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship.


Roy Scheider

Vineyard Assistant

Royal Scheider joined Famous Fossil in 2012, helping in both the winery and the vineyard. Of German heritage, Royal is the fifth generation to carry his name. Royal graduated from Orangeville High School and will soon complete his degree from Highland Community College. Royal’s father first introduced him to winemaking and instilled in him a love of the great outdoors. Be sure and give a wave when you see Royal in the vineyard or helping in the winery.

Upcoming Events

Sep 19 Fri 2014
11:00 AM Introducing Famous Fossil Chocolate Shoppe!
Introducing Famous Fossil Chocol…
Sep 19 @ 11:00 AM – December 31, 2014 @ 6:00 PM
Today we’ll begin carrying The Chocolatorium’s Dark Secret and Cacaocuvee’ Chocolates!  These are chocolates like you have never tasted before and are one of Oprah’s [...]
Dec 24 Wed 2014
11:00 AM Open Christmas Eve til 3:00
Open Christmas Eve til 3:00
Dec 24 @ 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM
We’re open today from 11:00 to 3:00.
Dec 25 Thu 2014
11:00 AM CLOSED Christmas Day
CLOSED Christmas Day
Dec 25 @ 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM
Merry Christmas!  We’re closed today.
Dec 31 Wed 2014
5:00 PM Early New Year’s Eve Party
Early New Year’s Eve Party
Dec 31 @ 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Celebrate with Famous Fossil friends with wine, food and fun as we celebrate with our annual early New Year’s Eve Party.  $20 includes 2 glasses of [...]
Jan 1 Thu 2015
11:00 AM CLOSED New Year’s Day
CLOSED New Year’s Day
Jan 1 @ 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM
Happy New Year!  We’re closed today.
Jan 5 Mon 2015
11:00 AM CLOSED today until Jan. 14.
CLOSED today until Jan. 14.
Jan 5 @ 11:00 AM – January 13, 2015 @ 6:00 PM
We’re taking time off for cleaning, clearing out and recovering from the holiday frenzy.  But we’ll be checking e-mail, Facebook and phone.   See you soon! [...]
Jan 14 Wed 2015
11:00 AM Winter Hours begin CLOSED on Mondays & Tuesdays
Winter Hours begin CLOSED on Mon…
Jan 14 @ 11:00 AM – May 1, 2015 @ 11:00 AM
Our Winter Hours begin today with the winery closed on Mondays & Tuesdays until Spring.  We’re often around though, so if you’ve made a special [...]
Jan 24 Sat 2015
8:30 AM Northern Illinois Winegrowers Annual Meeting
Northern Illinois Winegrowers An…
Jan 24 @ 8:30 AM – 4:00 PM
The annual meeting of northern Illinois winegrowers includes a business meeting, presentations on mead making, an overview of the winemaking and grape growing courses at Kirkwood [...]
Jan 29 Thu 2015
6:30 PM My Sweet Valentine Paint-In at Famous Fossil
My Sweet Valentine Paint-In at F…
Jan 29 @ 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Bring your lover, your best friend or your Mom to the fun Valentine’s Art Event.  Enjoy wine & appetizers while creating a unique work of [...]

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