From that moment on, Scovil was hooked.
"It was one of the best drinks I have had in my life, it was like 100-year-old Scotch kind of quality," he said.
Scovil and his wife, Monique, brewed their first batch of wine in their Aurora home later that summer -- a raspberry concoction they dubbed "the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde wine" because the tasty berry quickly gave way to overpowering and foul-tasting yeast.
That bumpy start wasn't a sign of things to come.
Since then, their wines and meads have won 18 different medals in contests here in Colorado and against more-experienced international competition. The wins include medals at the Colorado State Fair and Colorado Mountain Wine Fest.
The success of their wines has people clamoring to stock their cellars with it, Ron Scovil said.
"That's one of the questions we get asked the most: When can we buy it, are you guys selling it?" he said.
The short answer is: You can't. Wine and mead are controlled substances so the couple can't just start selling them, despite the popularity they have garnered at competitions around the area.
But Scovil said his plan is to open a winery and meadery in Aurora in the next few years so the couple can sell their product commercially. Getting the project off the ground and getting the requisite licenses will be a lengthy process that could take about two years, he said. In the mean time, the couple started a club for local wine enthusiasts that meets on the second Saturday of every month at the Brew Hut.
And, perhaps most importantly, the Scovils are entering more contests this year to continue to build buzz around their wine.
"We are going to use the two years that we can't sell any to actually build the brand and get our names out," he said. "It's basically advanced marketing."
For now, the couple's wine operation will continue to be based in the kitchen of their Aurora home.
To participate in the contest season, which runs from about the spring to the fall, the couple said they pump out as much wine as they can, their kitchen floor and sometimes living room floor almost always home to a few six-gallon buckets were the wine slowly ferments.
This week, the buckets in the kitchen were filled with a black locust honey mead and a Pinot Gris white wine.
Monique said there is a lot of work that goes into making the wine, from mixing the ingredients to corking the bottles.
"It's a second job," she said.
But despite the demands the hobby has placed on their time, Ron, who works in real estate, said it has proven to bee a lot of fun.
"The winemaking is fun because there is a perception of what certain wines should taste like. You're making wines to a particular style but you are also challenging people's taste," he said.
The mead, he said, is even more fun to make because it is a bit less restrictive and allows the mead maker to try a variety of ideas.
"The meads for me, its like painting with a clear canvas," he said. "It's a little more challenging to make but also more fun."
A black tool box in the couple's dining room is filled with tiny jars of honeys from all over the world, including Hawaii, Brazil and Australia. The couple works to pair the exotic honeys with exotic fruits for their meads, creating combinations that have often never been tried in competition before.
"You can come up with some unique flavor profiles. Certain honeys wind up going with certain fruits and you just can't beat it," he said.
Whatever combinations the couple tries seem to be working.
The mantle above their fire place is loaded with bottles of their award-winning wines and the accompanying medals.
Ron said he thinks one of the reasons for their success is the quality of water that comes out of the tap in Aurora. Other competitors at contests have to use filtered water or bottled waters for their wines, he said, but the Scovils use water straight from the faucet.
"The nice thing is Aurora has the best water in the state," he said. "I think it has actually helped us out in terms of making better-tasting wine and better-tasting meads."
(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)