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Perfect Pairings

Perfect Pairings

So, you purchased one of St Ambrose Cellars’ signature meads, wines, ciders, or brews but now hesitate at the fridge with the plaguing question: ‘what food pairs best with my beverage?’

No worries, we got you covered with a comprehensive list of drink pairing that will help no matter where your tastebuds meander.

Mead

Imagine a canvas on which it is your job to elegantly paint only two of the many pigments on the palette spectrum-ing robust, dark, sweet, bitter, fruity, or dry. It might seem overwhelming.

However, there is a trick to blending a beautiful mead portrait – which is to pair light meads (such as our Dancing Bare Ambrosia) with light foods (i.e. fish, chicken, etc.), dark melomels (AKA fruit meads such as Cherry Amore or Rhythm & Blues) with heavier foods (think stews and beef), and light melomels (John Lemon, Razzputin, and Razzmatazz) with fresh and popping flavors (perhaps salads or spicy shrimp tacos).

There is some room for play here but, to continue this painting metaphor, as you shade your landscape of sunset over Lake Michigan, restrain from smearing too much yellow into the waves.

Wine

No pressure here except the taped lines your art teacher has placed between colors. Meads have guidelines, wines have laws.

To reference our menu directly:

Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio (as well as other dry whites) pair well with vegetables and some fish.

Chardonnay (a rich white) pairs well with cheeses, most fish, and lighter meats.

Merlot and Cabernet Franc (and all dark reds) pair well with heavier meats and cheeses.

It should be said that most wines love bread and other starches so if you ever feel lost in the nitpicking, grab a baguette and enjoy the rest of your evening daydreaming of the cobblestone avenues in Paris.

Beer

Pairing beer to food is less a chore and more an exciting experiment. Even lighter ales can shine with the spicy or dark meals and darker brews can work wonderfully with fish. Our recommendation is to order a pizza and pick at the toppings between swigs.

How about you?

Do you have any favorite mead, wine, or beer pairings using St. Ambrose products? We’d love to see them!

This Week at St. Ambrose Cellars

This Week at St. Ambrose Cellars

2023 January

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  • No Events

It’s Memorial Day Weekend, and we’re sure you’re excited for the traditional kick-off to summer!

We’ll keep it brief and to the point here today, because we’ve got a TON of stuff going on and we don’t want you to miss any of it.

Cyser Lab

Ever wonder how the brewcrew spends their time when they aren’t making and bottling your current favorites? Find out this weekend with our Cyser Lab experiment. We’ve got a limited edition release of three new cysers that may someday join the permanent lineup – if you like them!

We have a Strawberry/Black Pepper cyser, an Orange Blossom cyser aged in French Oak barrels, and a Passionfruit cyser! Each will be available – until it’s gone – this weekend. Hurry and get here early in case your potential new favorite runs out!

Turbo Pup

Turbo Pup Duo graces the tasting room stage on Friday night for what is sure to be a rockin’ show! These local heroes are ready to melt some faces here at St. Ambrose Cellars and we couldn’t be more excited. Join us on Friday night at 6PM!

Ted Alan

Ted Alan hits the tasting room for a Saturday night show – like always, the fun starts at 6 PM

New Discs!

Looking for some outdoor recreation this weekend? Hit the disc golf course out back – and pick up some new Black Madonna discs from our friends at Innova.

Where in the World is St. Ambrose? January 2017

Where in the World is St. Ambrose? January 2017

It’s been another big month here at St. Ambrose Cellars, and we’re going to take a look at all the far flung places that our meads and wines have made it to this month.

First order of business – our store locator is up to date as of the end of January, and our distribution continues to grow across the country. Take a gander with the locator here and check to see if we’re available near you. We have 400 total locations listed as of today, with the bulk of those in Michigan but also a growing number of stores in Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. If you live in Michigan – and want St. Ambrose at your local store – you can urge your good shopkeeps to make a call to Imperial Distributors and see what can be done.

Some of the new locations include Tavern on Main in Clawson, MI, Jojo’s Natural Markets in Gaylord, and Coach Liquor Shop in Waterford, MI.

As always, you can order our mead and wine to 37 states from our store here on the website. You’ll go through our good friends at VinoShipper to make your order.

Untappd

We love checking out our profile on Untappd. It’s so fun to see all the cool places people drink their St. Ambrose, and what they think about it.

Let’s take a look at some statistics – first, we’ve got our most popular check-ins for the month:

What we see here is that Black Madonna is a huge hit with the Untappd crowd. With 46 check-ins, this was our most popular beverage in January. That’s followed a bit behind by XR Cyser and Evil Twins, two long-standing popular meads in our arsenal. Is your favorite a bit behind? Download the app and get ratin’.

Now, we take a look at who drinks more St. Ambrose – men or women:

The dudes take this one, but maybe it’s just because more dudes use Untappd. We’re not dealing with a scientific sample here, folks. This isn’t your University stats class.

Finally, let’s see what states were most checked in:

It might be surprising, but Michigan only narrowly carries the day here. Our great friends at Savannah Bee in South Carolina and Georgia represent pretty well! You can see some of those VinoShipper customers as well, with check-ins from places like Florida and Virginia, where we don’t even have retail stores. Those are the diehards. We love you for it.

Overall, here’s some numbers:

We had 164 check-ins

Our average rating (of 5) was 3.89

And my favorite comments:

Best investment in South Carolina!

  • Evil Twins, South Carolina

Very sweet! Holy cow its sweet!

  • XR Cyser, South Carolina

Yes!! This lemon is turned up to eleven. Boom!! Love this!!

  • John Lemon, Saginaw, MI

We’re always curious about where folks are enjoying the bee goddess – send us cool pics, stories, or what-have-you via the comments here or on our many social media outlets!

Meet Our New Meads

Meet Our New Meads

New Meads

new-meads-blog

December has been a month of experimentation here at St. Ambrose. Our guys in the meadery have been working hard on coming up with some new beverages for you to enjoy this frosty month – and we’ve got the scoop on all three right here. These are limited edition drafts, available only in the tasting room for now. But who knows what the future holds …

Santa’s Helper

Our first new mead of the season is quite appropriate for this time of year. Our Christmas-themed mead is called “Santa’s Helper”. Mulled wine has been a hot drink lately, and this is our take on a mulled mead.

Featuring black currant, cherry, strawberry, orange peel, and a bouquet of spices – allspice, cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg. On top of all that, this mead has been steeped in cabernet franc and merlot grape skins to give it another boost of flavor.

You can drink it chilled, or you can take it home and heat it up for another take. It’s been a big seller since we went on tap a few weeks ago so make sure to stop by and grab some before it’s gone!

Rhythm and Blues

This new draft mead is a bit simpler than Santa’s Helper. This rock and roller is a mix of black currant and grains of paradise. The warm flavor of the grains of paradise blends with the fresh and floral taste of black currant and our honey base to make a simple, refreshing mead that you can drink all night.

Sgt. Pepper’s Chipotle Cyser

This mead is definitely hot. And it’s been a hot seller thus far. For this, we took one of our most popular drinks – X.R. Cyser – and gave it a spicy taste. We added chipotle pepper to it and now it’s an apple pie with a definite kick. There’s no better way to warm up on a cold winter’s eve than with this blast of flavor. We have a very limited run available – so you’ll need to get down to the tasting room quickly to try this one out.

St. Ambrose Thanksgiving Survival Tips

It’s Thanksgiving season! You know what that means – food, family, and fun. And yeah, plenty of associated travel, stress, and potentially awkward situations. The holidays are stuffed full of the good, the bad, the awkward, and the ugly. We’re going to give you four ways that St. Ambrose Cellars can you help you survive unscathed.

Exercise Your Right

xr-cyser-blog

Uncle Joe has some strong opinions on recent events. Your cousins in college have been doing a lot of reading. And there’s always a nosy relative asking everyone questions a bit too personal. What’s the solution?

We, of course, want you to exercise your rights to free speech – but in a crowded space with lots of sharp kitchen utensils, you might want to exercise your right to refreshment instead. While everyone waits for the turkey, plop down a few of our XR Cyser bottles and change the topic of conversation yourself. “Apple Pie in a Bottle” is sure to get people talking about something a little less contentious.

Blend In

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Ok, so maybe that didn’t work. Or maybe food is taking a lot longer than anticipated. Need to get away? The Real Tree AP Camo St. Ambrose long-sleeve will buy you the time you need. If the house doesn’t have a forest foliage themed wallpaper scheme, you can always run into the backyard. Nobody will notice, and you’ll get some needed alone time!

Show Your Red, White, and Blue Pride

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The key to a peaceful dinner? Having a drink for everyone. We’ve got you covered, and you can show your patriotism.

For the red, we’ve got our 2013 Pinot Noir. Easy drinking Pinot goes great with the wide variety of big flavors you’re going to encounter on the Thanksgiving buffet table.

For the white, you’ve got 2011 Riesling Reserve. This classic from our cellar is running out and you’re going to want some of this before it’s gone! The refreshing taste of Riesling helps you get ready to mow down another turkey leg or six without overpowering the food.

For the blue, how about bringing in the Star Thistle? This traditional mead is unique and will be a new addition to many of your friends palettes. Star Thistle Mead is a semi-dry mead in the traditional style– simply fermented honey and water. It is a perfect entry point to the world of still mead and features a rich honey flavor with a crisp, dry finish.

Sweeten the Deal

honey-blog

Ok, let’s lay off the booze for a minute. How about adding some sweet, sweet, honey to your Thanksgiving meal? You could try this glazed shallot recipe, which features XR Cyser, for something different. Or you could some cinnamon raw honey, or the classic Tupelo, to pretty much anything on the table.

Close Strong

rr-forte

Finish the night strong with one of our dessert wine or dessert mead options. 2011 Forte is a red port-style wine that goes great with your favorite cigar, cheese, chocolate, or other after-dinner refreshment of choice, if you catch my drift. On the other side of the aisle, we’ve got the incomparable Royal Reserve.

Royal Reserve is aged in bourbon barrels for almost two years. As Noel says on the website, it is “The Nectar of the Gods!”.

 

There you go – a surefire survival guide to your Thanksgiving. And plenty of advertisements.

The Mysterious Black Madonna

The Mysterious Black Madonna

Invoke the Goddess of Divine Blackberry Mead. Make the pilgrimage to the halls of St. Ambrose and experience the wonders of the Black Madonna. This one-of-a-kind sour blackberry mead will tantalize the taste buds and serenade the senses.

Black Madonna sour mead is a “session” mead in a draft style. While still-mead is in the 12% or higher ABV range, this easy drinking draft is 6.9% ABV – like a slightly strong beer.

Sour mead is mead co-fermented with yeast and friendly pro-biotics, creating a very pleasant naturally fruity mead that we make in the draft carbonated version.

It is very similar to the sour beer that is an old tradition in parts of Europe and is becoming more and more popular in the contemporary beer world. Razz and Wild Ginger also feature this unique sour fermentation technique – and there are more on the way.

What is Black Madonna?

Historically, “Black Madonna” refers to statues or paintings (usually of medieval origin) featuring the Virgin Mary with dark or black features. These works are mostly wooden, but some are stone and painted. There are approximately 500 Black Madonna works in Europe, mostly in traditionally Catholic countries.

There is no one explanation for these Black Madonna works. Some appear to be designed to reflect the local population, others have turned black over the years due to the materials used in their creation, and others simply do not fall into either category.

Black Madonna Mixes

Black Madonna is one of our most popular meads to mix. For an especially delightful day, try a 50/50 mix with John Lemon – it’s wild!