Northern Michigan Wine Pour: Five Red Blends to Try

Autumn in Northern Michigan is a blended season, calling for red blends in our Northern Michigan wine choices. Flashbacks of foxy summer heat and breezy preludes of winter cooperate in a colorful hybrid that brings the full bounty of fields and forests to our tables.

No one grape can rightly satisfy the multiple demands of the delicious flora and fauna that come under the fork in October,so we turn to blends of the red persuasion. These robust alchemies of cabernet franc, merlot and marechal foche, among others, are true expressions of winemaking virtuosity. Borrowing color, structure and aroma from their varietal components, each wine is dosed with wood and waiting to deliver a final poetry that jives with the flavors of fall. The iconic heartlands of winemaking—Bordeaux, Tuscany, the Rhone and Rioja—all rely on artful assemblage, and this month we explore how our talented local vintners join them in living the blended life.

2007 Bel Lago Tempesta

Resplendent with aromas of cherry, mocha and spice, Charlie Edson bottles Tempesta only in exceptional vintages and agesthe wine for two years in French oak barriques.

2008 Brys Estate Cab/Merlot

This fruit forward middleweight blend from Brys flaunts bright cherry and berry, spicy barrel tones and great acidity. Delicious with game birds or veal saltimbocca.

2007 Blackstar Farms Leorie Vineyard

Showing impressive layers of fruit and structure along with great potential age-worthiness, this single vineyard bottling ofcabernet franc and merlot is the flagship effort of Blackstar’s winemaking team.

NV Peninsula Cellars Old School Red

PC’s proletarian pizza wine synergizes bacco noir, marechal foche, lemberger and cabernet franc in a fruit-driven mouth circus. Yum!

2007 Chateau Grand Traverse Silhouette

Briary fruit with a kiss of sweetness, Chateau Grand Traverse’s quirky off-dry blend of pinot noir, gamay, cabernet franc andpinot meunier goes great with smoked puerco or spicy jambalaya.

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