Michigan Wine Showcase Photos
On April 15th, the Michigan Grape and Wine Industry Council held the Michigan Wine Showcase at The RattleSnake Club in downtown Detroit. The purpose of the annual event is to showcase Michigan wines for the hospitality and tourism industries.
According to Claudia Tyagi, master sommelier and one of the event’s co-sponsors, “It’s very important for front line restaurant and hospitality people like restaurant managers, servers and beverage managers to be a part of the Michigan Wine Showcase; they are the ones who are moving the bottles and glasses of Michigan wine.”
According to Linda Jones, program manager for the Michigan Grape and Wine Industry Council (MGWIC), the Michigan wine industry continues to grow steadily at about 6% per year. With the quality and recognition of Michigan Wines increasing, there are questions regarding the ability of the state’s wine industry to meet a surge in demand. The 2012 vintage is considered one of the state’s best and Michigan wines have recently won top honors at numerous national wine competitions.
Jones, who has been with the MGWIC for fifteen years, is wary of the “boom and bust” cycle that can afflict suddenly popular wine regions. Despite the increasing demand for Michigan wine, Jones said the Michigan wine industry is seeking sustainable, incremental growth.
“It’s where the grapes are grown, not where the wine is bottled that’s important,” Jones said. ‘We could bring in tankers of California juice and grow like crazy, but that’s not the route we have chosen to go. Regional distinctiveness depends on regional fruit; to have long term success we must continue to grow steadily.”
Michigan is currently the 5th largest grape producer in the nation and the 7th largest wine grape producer. Riesling is the top wine grape planted in Michigan with Riesling acreage doubling in the past ten years, Jones said.
See related story: Great Lakes Riesling Steps Onto World Stage