Greetings, all. My wife and I are currently in mid-Michigan, beginning to ramp up our experience in wine. Married 20 years, we have found our tastes changing over the years. Maturing? Possibly. Evolving? Definitely. Once a sweet wine only taste, we have expanded our palate to include some varied wines. Our preferred choices currently are complex, high-alcohol content Cabernets and Zinfandels. Some of our favorites are Layer Cake Primitivo, Chateau Montelena Cabernet, Rosenblum Zinfandel, Bogle Petite Syrah and Marietta Old Vine blends. On the white side of wine, we enjoy a citrus laden Pinot Gris (like King Estate out of Oregon) or Conundrum Chardonnay. We are self taught wine people, expanding our tastes with simply trying new wines at home and with friends. Yearly my wife's Hungarian family gathers to a meal of old time recipe favorites. Egri Bikavar often finds it's place next to the sour cream and paprika laced dishes.
I am trying to elevate my experience to "the next level". By that, I mean educating myself to be able to taste a wine and identify it as a cabernet, zinfandel, syrah or merlot. Whether it comes from Italy, France or California, perhaps that will come as my education advances. We have been to many wineries in Michigan, and are enjoying some of the wines coming out. Not much for the sweet wines, some of the drier wines have caught our attention. Our tastes focus on a more complex, more developed wine. For us, aging in oak is nice. Our next big trip in the next year or so will be to California wine country. Still in the infancy stages of researching and planning.
I hope to learn some things from the wealth of knowledge available on this site. Perhaps, I can contribute a helpful observation here and there. It looks like a lot of fun. Cheers.
Another wine fan from Michigan
- Reply by Philip James, Aug 25, 2009.
Welcome. Nice picture!
Sounds like you have a good understanding of West Coast USA wines. Are there any European wines that have caught your fancy? Less oak, generally, but potentially higher acidity, more subtlety, but at the expense of fruit (general trade off only, not specific comparison).
- Reply by Muchkabouche, Aug 25, 2009.
I like Layer Cake Primitivo, from Italy. I totally disliked the Amano Primitivo, also out of Italy. Maybe a bad bottle? I have been reading a lot about European wines, and am intrigued about getting a bottle of Chataneuf-du-pape. Any recommendations for a good starting point, maybe around $25-30?
I like a peppery Chilean wine, and also a zesty Shiraz out of Australia. Woop-Woop has spent some time in my wine rack.
- Reply by rhill2990, Aug 25, 2009.
I would like to add my welcome to the site. I am in Ohio and it is good to hear from another Midwesterner. I too am renewing my love of wines and looking to increase my understanding and enjoyment. I would like to visit some of the better wineries in Michigan. I kind of enjoy visiting local wineries. I would be interested in hearing of some of the better wineries in Michigan that you have enjoyed.
- Reply by GregT, Aug 25, 2009.
Rhill - Wyncroft. And in Ohio, Kincaid.
- Reply by lolagirl, Aug 26, 2009.
Hi and welcome, I too am new and from Michigan. We recently made a trip up-north and found some AMAZING, yes amazing wines on the Leelanau Peninsula.
45 North is putting out a fantastic Rose' @ app $20. Here is some information, even tho it is a Pinot Noir Rose' it drinks like a crisp white.
And another amazing little gem is Circa Vineyard. Man oh man they only have like 10 wines and they are all fantastic, we drank their Requisite 2007 last night and it was truly a delight. It drank like a smooth Pinot Noir with the back of the mouth Cab. feeling. It is approx. $23
Here is the information: Made from Blaufrankisch, a German red grape also known as Lemberger; it's a rich, fruity, dry red that offers a fabulous palate of raspberry, dark chocolate and vanilla flavors.
- Reply by GregT, Aug 27, 2009.
I can't believe I missed this:
"Yearly my wife's Hungarian family gathers to a meal of old time recipe favorites. Egri Bikavar often finds it's place next to the sour cream and paprika laced dishes."
Stop with that Hungary makes some great wines including some outstanding bikaver but I think I know what you're getting and that's the crap that was put out by the state-owned monopoly and it's really swill. Hungarian whites are just great these days but you'll have to order from out of state because I don't know anyone who's selling anything good in MI.
And speaking of Blaufränkisch, the Hungarians call it Kekfrankos and they do a wonderful job with it. It's actually an "Austrian" grape that was brought to Germany in the late 1800s. But remember that what we see as the political borders of Austria and Hungary today are not what the Austro-Hungarian empire constituted, so both modern-day Austria and Hungary make really good blaufrankisch, or blue franc. The red grapes that were more respected were called franconian, or French, and the grapes that were less respected were called "Hunnic" and this grape, which apparently is not French, was given that name for prestige purposes. But in Eger it can make a really good wine IMO and I'd love to try it from Michigan. Those that I've had from Washington have been really disappointing.
Incidentally, of course I disagree with this statement regarding "European" wine: "Less oak, generally, but potentially higher acidity, more subtlety, but at the expense of fruit. . ."
If you can ship in, I'll tell you some Hungarian wine you might try.
If you can't but you can name a store or two nearby, we can tell you something about the wines they offer. Meantime try Winebuys in MI and tell them to link to Snooth if they haven't
- Reply by Gregory Dal Piaz, Aug 27, 2009.
Just as an aside, Blaufrankisch is actually called Franconia in Northern Italy!
It's a lovely wine, I wish I had access to more!