Just in time help you celebrate Ohio Wine Month is a new book from area author Claudia J. Taller titled Ohio’s Lake Erie Wineries. The book includes more than 200 vintage images, giving readers a unique opportunity to reconnect to the history that shaped their community.
The book will be released on Monday, June 20.
Ohio’s Lake Erie wineries and vineyards are rooted in tradition. European immigrants settled on the Lake Erie islands and nearby shoreline in the mid-1800s, and the grape industry flourished in Ohio into the early 20th century. Industrialization from Cleveland to Toledo swallowed up prime growing property along the lakeshore but many farms continued to grow grapes.
During Prohibition, wine making went underground. When it ended, restaurant owners bottled their own fortified wines and some of the wineries started mass producing wine with new equipment. The wines of Ohio, like those all over the eastern United States, were mostly sweet and made from native labrusca grapes.
In the 1960s, Ohio’s serious winemakers learned how to cultivate European-style vinifera grapes along Lake Erie’s shore and on the islands. Chardonnay and cabernet sauvignon grapes now grow alongside Concord and Catawba. Today, more than 40 wineries stretch across northern Ohio.
Claudia J. Taller is a Cleveland-area freelance writer who has been enjoying wine country adventures in Ohio over the last 10 years. She writes travel, history and lifestyle articles for local and national publications. A lifelong writer, she is a graduate of Kent State University’s English department and leads writing groups and retreats.
She lives within five miles of Lake Erie. When she discovered the long history of Ohio’s Lake Erie wineries and the high number of existing wineries along Lake Erie’s shore, she became interested in knowing more. In her visits to wineries she discovered the art of growing grapes, the craft of making wine, and the passion with which the growers and winemakers produce a product that competes with wines in California.
Taller spent hours in historical societies and wineries to compile this book about Ohio’s Lake Erie wineries. She was inspired by the passionate work of growing grapes and making wine and was intrigued to know Ohio was once the premier wine-producing state. The book is a celebration of the comeback of the Lake Erie wine industry and those who toil to make that happen.
The trend is toward more wineries in Ohio. It is Taller’s hope that Ohio’s Lake Erie Wineries will enlighten people about Ohio’s rich history as a winemaking state, and that people will embrace local Lake Erie wineries, winemakers, and wines.
Available at area bookstores, independent retailers, and online retailers, or through Arcadia Publishing at www.arcadiapublishing.com. The 128-page book is part of the Images of America series and retails for $21.99.
Technorati Tags: wine
Saturday, June 18, 2011
Friday, June 17, 2011
There was a bit of confusion on the wine list as this wine was called Alluvium in previous vintages. No matter what the name, this is a rewarding wine.
This a Bordeaux-style blend of 52% Merlot, 36% Cabernet Sauvignon with lesser quantities of Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc and a dash of Malbec. The balance is just right. There are enough tannins to support the soft Merlot and the Cab gives it enough heart to pair well with beef dishes. There is a warm berry aroma and the flavors are cooked cherries and plum with a accents of mocha.
The finish is supple and lingers on the tongue. For our second bottle we ordered a reserve Malbec – but those in our group sipped somewhat reluctantly, wishing we had gotten a second bottle of the Meritage. The Knights Valley ruled the table with its majestic flavor and soaring taste.
I was very surprised to see that gem retails for only about $22. This is 90+ quality for only pocket change.
- Bordeaux Varieties from Dry Creek Vineyard (winepeeps.com)
- Three Sub-$20 Napa Valley Cabernets for Summer Sipping (uncork29.com)
- Chateau Golan (Israel) (wineterroirs.com)
Thursday, June 16, 2011
Two other great resources are the Ohio Wine Producers Association website and the Taste Ohio Wine website sponsored by the Ohio Grape Industries Commission. Of course, don’t forget to look for Ohio wines at your local wine shop, grocery store and restaurants.
To get you acquainted with some of the top wines in the state, below we have some of the results of the 2011 Ohio Wine Competition, which was held in Wooster, Ohio, last month.
There were 268 wines judged and below you will find the best of show as well as the consensus gold winners. The CG winners were judged to be gold medal quality unanimously by the nationally renowned panel of judges.
Raise your glass!
BEST OF SHOW
- Overall Best of Show: Burnet Ridge, Pinot Gris, 2010, Lake Erie
- Best of Show White Wine: Ferrante Winery, Riesling, 2010, American
- Best of Show Red Wine: Grand River Cellars, Cabernet Franc, 2009, Grand River Valley
- Best of Show Blush/Rose: Heineman Winery, Sweet Belle, Non–vintage, Lake Erie
- Best of Show Fruit Wine: Breitenbach Wine Cellars, Red Raspberry, Non-vintage, American
- Best of Show Dessert Wine: Breitenbach Wine Cellars, 4 Barrel Tawny Port, Non-vintage, American
- Fruit Wines from Natural Fruit Breitenbach Wine Cellars 3 Berry Blend NV American CG
- Fruit Wines from Natural Fruit Breitenbach Wine Cellars Red Raspberry NV American CG
- Dessert: fortified, dry or sweet Breitenbach Wine Cellars 4 Barrel Tawny Port NV American CG
- Pinot Gris/Grigio Burnet Ridge Pinot Gris 2010 Lake Erie CG
- Riesling Debonne Vineyards Riesling Lot 907 Reserve 2009 Grand River Valley CG
- Riesling Ferrante Winery & Ristorante Riesling 2010 American CG
- Cabernet Franc Grand River Cellars Cabernet Franc 2009 Grand River Valley CG
- Ice Wine Grand River Cellars Vidal Blanc Ice Wine 2008 Grand River Valley CG
- American Blush/Rose Heineman Winery Sweet Belle NV Lake Erie CG
- American White: Blends Ravens Glenn Winery White Raven NV American CG
- Flavored Fruit Wines/Specialty Stone Crest Vineyard Blue Stone NV American CG
- Hybrid Red: Blends Valley Vineyards Red Reflections 2009 Ohio River Valley CG
- Celebrating Riesling Month: Dr. L Prevails In Blind Tasting (toledowinesandvines.blogspot.com)
- Time To Celebrate: June is Ohio Wine Month (toledowinesandvines.blogspot.com)
- Ohio Wineries Earn The Ohio Quality Wine Designation (toledowinesandvines.blogspot.com)
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Image of Cameron Hughes Wine via Snooth
Beer and Wine Cave, 4400 Heatherdowns, (419) 382-6221. 6-9 PM. Tuscan Wines. $15.
The Andersons, Talmadge Road. Wine Tasting. 6-8 PM. 1. Monte Volpe Pinot Bianco, California dry white blend, 2. Enotria Cortese, California dry white, 3. Chehalem Inox, Oregon chardonnay, 4. Gregory Graham Chardonnay
Carneros, California chardonnay, 5. Treasure Hunter Grape Shot Red, Alexander Valley dry red, 6. Ribero del Duero, Tempranillo, 7. Max Richter Estate Riesling. Nominal fee per sample.
Beer and Wine Cave, 4400 Heatherdowns, (419) 382-6221. 6-9 PM. Tuscan Wines. $15.
Corks Wine and Liquor, Promenade Plaza, 27250 Crossroads Pkwy., Rossford – (419) 872-6800. 6-9 PM. Red Mountain Riot: Here we go! This is my favorite Washington AVA, and I'm gonna represent! The Red Mountain region is home to many limited production, high end wineries; many of which you and I should never even be able to get our hands on! But guess what? We got 'em!
Friday, June 17
* Special Event * Toledo Museum of Art Wine by the Glass Pavilion series: Wines for the Barby. 7:00 to 9:30 PM in the Glass Pavilion. Enjoy four wines, light snacks, and a view of glassmakers working in the Hot Shop. Prices are $15 for members and $20 for nonmembers.
Aficionado Wine and Cigars, The Shoppes at RiverPlace, 26567 N. Dixie Highway, Suite 135, Perrysburg, (419-873-4444). 5:00 – 8:30 p.m. Dad's Cabs: 1. Terra Andina, 2. Jean Bousquet, 3. Kiona, 4. Cameron Hughes Lot 189. $15 tasting.
The Andersons, Woodville Mall. 1-3 PM. Saturday wine tasting: 1. Dad’s Day Off Pinot Noir, 2007, Italy; 2. Opolo Petite Sirah, 2006, Paso Robles; 3. Edna Valley Sauvignon Blanc, 2008, San Luis Obispo; 4. Mirassou Riesling, 2009, California. $2.00 per flight or nominal fee per sample.
Walt Churchill's Market, 26625 Dixie Hwy, Perrysburg, (419) 872-6900. 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM. Nominal fee per sample or by the flight.
AREA WINE BARS
- Tres Belle Wine and Martini Lounge, (419) 874-4555, 3145 Hollister Lane, Perrysburg (Levis Commons).
- Vino 100 Wine Bar & Restaurant, (419) 866-8466, Promenade West, 3355 Briarfield Blvd, Suite C, Maumee.
- Zinful Wine Bar & Restaurant, (419) 878-9463, 7541 Dutch Road, Waterville.
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
This is a winning Pinot Noir from the Carneros region of Napa Valley. Carneros is known for its cool summers, moderate winters and afternoon breezes. We poured this during a recent reception for a group visiting our office and it is terrific.
This has multi-layered flavors of cinnamon, cherry and vanilla. It has a round, rich flavor that lingers on the tongue. It is refined and elegant. The aging is done in small French oak barrels.
When done right, Pinot Noir can display balance and finesse like almost no other wine. This is an excellent example and should pair wonderfully with a wide variety of foods. Highly recommended.
- Rapid Review! And a side note on wine reviewing! (grapesrgreat.com)
- 2001 Domaine Mussy Pommard Epenots 1er Cru (elevage.blogspot.com)
- Pinot Noir doesn't need to be that expensive to be good (manageyourcellar.blogspot.com)
Monday, June 13, 2011
|Hillebrand Wines in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario.|
Without fermentation, you have no wine – just an expensive tank of murky grape juice. And yeast is the catalyst that transforms the fruit of the vine into the elixir so dear to our hearts.
During our recent trip to visit wineries in Niagara, we discovered that innovative winemakers there are experimenting with the use of wild fermentation techniques in place of commercial yeast cultures.
|Sparkling wine from Flat Rock Cellars use crown caps.|
Most wines use commercial yeast and the selection of particular strains can contribute to the finish of wines, enhancing aromas of wood or berries, for example.Wild fermentation means that a winemaker didn’t add commercial yeast, but that the wine started fermenting naturally from wild yeasts in the air and living on grape skins.
|Samples of as-yet unreleased wine at Vineland.|
With the standard fermentation, a foil package of yeast culture is sprinkled into the crush and within 15 minutes the process has begun. Wild fermentation is much more mysterious and, according to McDonald, much riskier. The winemaker must crush the grapes and wait for them to ferment on their own. You don’t know what you’re going to get. Ideally, you’ll get a more complex wine that layers that express the terroir of the vineyard.
|Dry rose' at Tawse on a foggy morning.|
In the tastings we had a Hillebrand, the native ferment Sauvignon Blanc had a more mineral, earthy flavor. Interesting indeed, but side by side with Sauv Blanc fermented the standard (commercial yeast) way, my nod went to the “tame” fermentation. While the wild ferment may have best expressed the terroir, it wasn’t the best expression of the varietal.
It may be thus when you are pushing the envelope. All the variables with wild ferment are not in your control – but when you dial it in, the reward is an incredibly unique artisan wine.