The work is far from done. A truckload of frozen grapes waits to be added to the presser. “Making ice wine is a double-edged sword. It’s incredibly labor intensive,” says Eaker. But at the end of the day, it produces a wine unlike any other. “Ice wine captures the essence of the grape in a refined, concentrated form,” Eaker says. “It’s refreshingly sweet with a high acidity.”
Longview’s 2008 ice wine was bottled and released as Sweet Winter Ice this spring. It tastes like honey with hints of cantaloupe, and earned a double gold medal at this year’s Michigan Wine and Spirits Competition. If Mother Naturecooperates again, the winemakers will bring in the 2009 harvest this month.
To me, ice wine seems a remedy for the soul. The palatable rich taste presents a perfect ending to any meal. “It’s sweet, yet full of finesse. A dessert wine refined,” concludes Eaker. “This ice wine, this farm, it’s a legacy for my grandchildren.” T
Sharon Kegerreis is a freelance writer and photographer. She is co-author of From the Vine: Exploring Michigan Wineries, a 2008 Michigan Notable Book. You may reach Sharon at [email protected] or www.michiganvine.com.
Wine Tips, Tours and Travel in Traverse City, Old Mission and Leelanau
- Savor Leelanau’s Wine Country
- Old Mission Peninsula Wine Country
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- Video: Sit Back and Tour Northern Michigan Wine Country
- Northern Michigan Sparkling Wines
- Water and Wine Weekends
- Video: Tapas and Wine Touring at Old Mission’s Chateau Chantal
- Four Pinot Noir Picks from Old Mission and Leelanau Wineries
- Video: Chateau Grand Traverse Talks Rieslings
- Michigan Beer and Wine Dinners at Boyne
- Video: Mark Johnson of Chateau Chantal Demonstrates Wine Tasting
- Traverse City’s Urban Winery
- See Wine Country by Bike
- Subscribe to MyNorth’s Food & Wine Newsletter: It’s free!
- Romancing the Riesling
- Video: Sommeliers Come to Northern Michigan to Taste Leelanau Wines