Cost: Average price $17
Where buy now: Solo Vino – $15.99, Byerly’s, Zipp’s, Thomas Liquor
Grapes: 100% Chardonnay
Region: Old Mission Peninsula, Michigan
Thanksgiving will soon be here- our time to give thanks for all the riches in our lives. Of course it also means retailers will be forcing sales, deals, and fake holiday cheer down your throat. You likely have plans to see family and friends; some you want to see and, well, a few you kinda don’t. Tis’ the season, right?
What do I love best about Thanksgiving? Why the Thanksgiving feast, silly! A juicy, succulent bird adorned with all the fixings. It’s heavy and warm like a down comforter. And just like a down comforter, it’s dead weight downright paralyzes you. Really, you’ve no choice but employ wine to help cut through all that “stick to your ribs” fare. (Not to mention to help deal with your annoying cousins who won’t discipline their children leaving you to quell their sugar laden spastic behaviors.) Or that drunk uncle that starts singing hymns before crying and then later passing out.
But I digress.
I have the perfect regional wine, from Michigan to be exact- a Chardonnay that’ll knock your socks on your ass: Arcturos Sur Lie Chardonnay from Black Star Farms Vineyards. Black Star Farms has vineyards on both the Old Mission and Leelanau Peninsulas, this is the second Michigan wine from the same area that’s impressed me. Earlier this year, I deemed L.Mawby Vineyard’s Sex as perfect V-day wine http://bit.ly/Xy47T9/L Mawby Sex Yes, Michigan. Home of Gerald Ford, Kid Rock and a city actually named “Colon”.
What’s going on in Northern Michigan? Let me tell you. The Old Mission and Leelanau Peninsulas are located on the Earth’s 45th Parallel. This means it’s smack dab in the middle of the North Pole and the Equator. Other famous wine regions on that Parallel include: Alsace, Bordeaux and Burgundy. Hmmm, imagine that? Awesome juice coming from France lies on the same 45th Parallel as that of Old Mission & Leelanau Counties. Plus, this area is surrounded by Lake Michigan, creating it’s own micro-climate. This not only influences temperature and precipitation, but also, it has it’s own unique terroir going on. Yes, Michigan. http://www.wineriesofoldmission.com/local/upload/file/WOMP-Broch-2013.pdf /Old Mission Wine Map
I was introduced to this wine from our old pal Rodney at Byerly’s Minnetonka, by way of this great lil’ bro/sis duo, Oeno Distribution. I met Anthony (brother) who made me aware of L. Mawby’s Sex. BTW, he’s a saucy little spitfire, so I encourage you to follow Oeno Distribution on Facebook and make it to a tasting near you. Anyways, when I heard this wine came from Oeno, I knew it had to be good.
Rodney poured me a glass of this pale golden nectar. Before I even finished the sample, I was reaching for a bottle to put in my basket. For real. That is not an exaggeration.
Arcturos Sur Lie is an unoaked Chardonnay. Fermented in stainless steel tanks, you’re getting a medium bodied wine with notes of apple, pineapple and citrus fruits. Earlier, I mentioned this area has it’s own terroir. Simply tasting this wine made me realize that. It has a nice expression of steely minerality and fruit that just seem to say “Welcome to Michigan”. [It does NOT say “Welcome to Colon”, thankfully.]
This is a versatile white wine and a great pairing with your Thanksgiving Day feast. That medium body will hold up to those mashed potatoes and gravy. The crisp citrus notes will pair well with that all natural, free-range, organic, Andrea Boccelli-serenaded-whilst-being-slaughtered turkey. Plus, how many of your family members have tried a Michigan wine? Blow away their expectations with this Arcturos Sur Lie Chardonnay. You’ll truly be enjoying the best of the Midwest, savoring and appreciating all of life’s riches.
That is, until you pass out.