September 19, 2017

Quirky Missouri Wines

It’s a lunchtime delicacy served in elementary school cafeterias, frequently requested sans crust. Everyone likes it in a unique way. Some like peanut butter globbed on inch-thick, while others prefer minimal butter, maximum jelly. Some like it toasted, while some hate it when the peanut butter is too melted.But none of these preferences matter anymore. This is a new era for peanut butter and … [Read more...]

Let’s Be Honest About Labrusca Wines

Vitis labrusca wines are big sellers for many wine regions in the United States. The snobbery against any wine producing region, variety or style of wine, including native American wines, can be annoying, especially in the retailing of these products.I’m not sure why the industry and distribution business won’t let consumers drink what they want.  Hey, Lambrusco sells in Italy, which is … [Read more...]

B2B: Stone Hill Triumphs at Norton Blind Tasting

For nearly three years, a small collection of Norton wines has been aging in the basement downstairs. The diminutive gathering of five bottles, all from Missouri wineries and most from the 2009 vintage, is the first wine I’ve ever stored for more than a few weeks. The fact that they’ve survived for this long is testimony to an ongoing curiosity about this grape, which many others share.See … [Read more...]

Midwest Winery Rankings 2014

After years of rapid expansion, the growth in the number of Midwest wineries slowed during the past year.Since the second quarter of 2013, the number of Federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) winery permits in the 11 state area covered by Midwest Wine Press increased by 1.7% to 1,264.In comparison, the number of TTB winery permits increased by 10% from 2012 to … [Read more...]

Frontenac Blanc’s Promising Future

Frontenac blanc, a mutation of Frontenac gris, is the latest member of the Frontenac grape family. Viticulture experts say the variety was first observed in Quebec during 2005 and that the mutation was probably taking place at several Canadian and Minnesota vineyards at roughly the same time.The parent grape, Frontenac, was introduced by the University of Minnesota in 1996. This dark … [Read more...]

Should New Hybrid Grapes Be More Old World?

Evaluating wine is no easy job.Many art forms - like music and painting- continually develop new genres to accommodate new influences.  But wine is different.  Even today, wine appreciation is based on the proposition that a very limited number of grapes can produce "quality" wine.The highly subjective nature of wine comparison creates a dilemma for Midwest winemakers.  Non-European grapes … [Read more...]

Mawby’s Masterpieces of Michigan

This article is sponsored by MI Wine Barrel, makers of durable and economic stainless steel wine barrels.Larry Mawby isn't only one of Michigan's wine pioneers, he's also one of the funniest people you'll ever meet. Like his methode champenoise sparkling wines, you'll need to pay close attention to garner the full benefit of both his humor and his complex L. Mawby wines.M. Lawrence wines, … [Read more...]

Wine Price: No Impact on Midwest Tasting Room Sales

A team of researchers, led by Professor Bill Gartner from the University of Minnesota, has found that the price of wine in Midwest winery tasting rooms does not impact on sales. The research particularly applies to farm wineries in rural areas.Gartner surveyed hundreds of wineries in the Midwest and northern USA as part of an ongoing study by a consortium of universities for the Northern … [Read more...]

Game Changer Grape is a Little Pearl

The 2014 Wisconsin Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Conference led to the typical dissemination and confluence -or occasional clash- of ideas that makes a conference of this nature so infectious.  Although, it has been argued that there are too many such conferences in the Midwest, the goal is to leave having learned something new, providing material for future experimentation and execution in the … [Read more...]

Solving the Distribution Dilemma at Smaller Wineries

Ever considered self-distribution? Or, does the prospect of doing it all yourself make you cringe at the thought of doing it ALL yourself? As with anything, there are advantages and disadvantages to self-distribution.Obviously, you first need to determine whether it is even permitted in your state. In the Midwest, wineries are generally permitted to self-distribute in Missouri, Michigan, … [Read more...]