Savor these six new Old Mission Peninsula wine releases.
Nature’s unpredictable pivots have forced Old Mission Peninsula growers and winemakers to stay nimble during the last two harvests when late springs and cold, wet autumns have curtailed crop yields and ripening cycles. In spite of the challenges, however, cold climate varieties like riesling and pinot blanc have produced wines with aromatic energy and bright acid structure that give them longevity in the cellar and versatility on the dinner table. What’s more, red and white bottlings from the optimally ripe and abundant 2016 and 2017 vintages have had extra time to integrate in barrel and bottle and these late releases represent some of the best wines the region has ever produced.
Wine, we find, is the best tonic for all of the disruption in the world, so head up Center Road with an empty trunk, an open mind and a thirst for better days ahead to stock up on these hot new releases and help support Old Mission Peninsula’s world-class wineries.
Black Star Farms // 2017 Arcturos Grüner Veltliner, Lone Silo Vineyard
Near-perfect maturation on the vine and extended lees contact yielded a rich and sophisticated grüner veltliner loaded with apple, pear and white pepper.
Bonobo Winery // 2019 Rosé
Winemaker Cornell Olivier whole-cluster pressed and co-fermented eight different varieties to produce this bone-dry rosé that flashes notes of apple blossom, raspberry, guava and honeysuckle.
Bowers Harbor // 2018 Riesling, Block II
Bowers’ driest incarnation of Northern Michigan’s cornerstone variety, the Block II Riesling has bright linear acidity with white peach and tart grapefruit pith.
Brys Estate // 2018 Pinot Blanc Reserve
Pear and golden apple abound in this reserve bottling of pinot blanc that balances freshness and mid-palate texture.
Chateau Grand Traverse // 2017 Gamay Noir
We should all be drinking more gamay. CGT deftly harnesses the grape’s red cherry and black pepper essence in a fresh, medium-bodied red that pairs with almost anything.
Mari Vineyards // 2016 Prosperpina
Mari continues to reinvent the North’s potential for red wine production. In the new Proserpina, merlot’s propensity toward black cherry and anise gets boosted by fine tannins and briary dark berry fruit from a 25 percent dose of teroldego.
Traverse food and drinks editor, Tim Tebeau, writes from Petoskey. [email protected]