Bowers Harbor Red Cépages

Maker: Bowers Harbor, Lake Leelanau, Michigan, USAwpid-20141112_171618.jpg

Grapes: Unknown (likely some hybrids in the mix)

Place of origin: Michigan, USA

Vintage: 2010

ABV: 12.5%

Purchased for $13

Appearance: Brick red with long thick legs, pretty close together.

Nose: Semi-sweet and jammy. Black cherry jam, cedar, a touch of foxiness.

Palate: More tart than the nose would suggest. Blueberry jam, blackberries, oak.

Finish: Chewy and sweet. Wild blackberries, leather, a bit of tartness.

Parting words: This wine was a bit of a surprise to me, but it shouldn’t have been. It was sweeter than I expected but still has enough underlying structure to keep it from falling into pop wine territory. It seemed more like a table wine to me than the French-style red blend I was expecting. I should have looked more closely at the label, because it says right under the boat “Red Table Wine”.

The price is a little more than I like to pay for table wines, but I liked it over all. It did OK with our supper of homemade macaroni and cheese. My wife said that she prefers that style of wine in the summertime, and I can’t disagree with her there. Red Cépages works best as a casual warm weather sipper. As such, it is recommended.

Artisan Red

Maker: Black Star Farms, Sutton’s Bay, Michigan, USA

Grapes: ???

Region: Michigan, USA

Style: Semi-Sweet Table Wine

ABV: 11%

Appearance: Dark Burgundy.

Nose: Fruity. Prune juice, grape juice, sweet cherries, strawberries.

On the palate: Sweet and fruity. Red raspberries, raisins, black cherries, tiny kiss of oak.

Finish: Mild, slightly tannic, a bit sweet but fading quickly.

Parting words: Artisan Red is a pleasant, fruity, food-friendly table wine. It’s a tastier alternative to some of the toothache-inducing super-sweet, mediocre supermarket table wines many small wineries put out. It is sweet, but it is more complex than the competition and is a decent price. Short and sweet, just like my wife and this review. Artisan Red is recommended.