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Whole Cluster Goodness From Old Mission Peninsula

Our good friend and colleague, Alan Kerr aka Canadian Zinfan, contacted me recently and asked if I would procure a bottle of the 2012 Chateau Grand Traverse Old Mission Peninsula Whole Cluster Riesling for him. It seems that he had tried one a few nights prior and was quite impressed with this fine representative of Michigan Riesling, especially at the Costco price of $10.99. I was pleased that Chef Kerr so enjoyed this little gem, as he has no shortage of fine Riesling available to him right in his proverbial back yard on the Niagara Peninsula, and, of course, we’ve been fans of all of Sean O’Keefe’s specialty projects for some years now.

I was happy to honor Alan’s request, and was reminded that we’ve had both the 2012 Whole Cluster and its predecessor in the last few months, and I needed to transcribe my notes and put them online. Both are listed as “medium dry” on the dry-to-sweet scale on the back label. Here are my impressions of each.

2011 Chateau Grand Traverse Old Mission Peninsula Whole Cluster Riesling, 12% alc., $12.99: Clean, medium color, with a pure Riesling nose; flavors and aromas of fairly ripe red and green apples, with shades of honey and apricot and subtle minerality. Rich, almost unctuous and oily; medium-full bodied, with ample acidity and good length. This delicious libation makes a fine match for Kim’s curried veggies and brown rice. Find this wine

2012 Chateau Grand Traverse Old Mission Peninsula Whole Cluster Riesling, 12.1% alc., $10.99: Clean, medium color; what sweetness there is seems more apparent in the first few sips, as a tangy lime element quickly establishes itself to add an interesting aspect to the ripe red and green apple flavors and aromas. Medium bodied and then some, with good acids, nice length on the finish and a density that isn’t quite unctuous. Sweet enough to pair with some spicy oriental-styled foods yet dry enough to match up nicely with some fresh trout from one of our Michigan lakes or streams. I always like these a lot, especially the way they vary some from vintage to vintage, as these two do. Find this wine

I’m holding one for you, Chef, along with several of our own. Don’t wait too long to pick it up, though…

Reporting from Day-twah,

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