2016 Pinot Grigio

2016 Pinot Grigio

This month marks the return of a Pinot Grigio varietal wine to our shelves. Our 2016 Pinot Grigio comes in a fresh new label with a green St. Ambrose Cellars goddess and some eye-catching foil. Inside, you’ll find the great tasting white wine that you expect from the talented team of winemakers in the back.

What is Pinot Grigio?

First, one of the most common questions – yes, Pinot Gris and Pinot Grigio are the same thing. Why two names for one thing? Who knows. Mysteries of the universe. Related to the Pinot Noir grape, these are beautiful grapes:

Pinot Grigio grapes produce fruity flavors, typically. These wines tend to run towards the dry end of the scale but some are sweeter – whether by sweetening with other ingredients or (more rare) if they come from the Alsace wine region on the border of France and Germany.

Suffice to say, our 2016 Pinot Grigio doesn’t include old world European grapes. This wine is our most-dry white wine on the menu currently.

Our Pinot Grigio

Our version features flavors of peach, lemon, lime, and a ruby red grapefruit finish. This light and citrus wine is also very food-friendly because of the subtle flavors. It won’t overwhelm the food on the menu.

We recommend trying it with creamy Italian dishes like risotto and mushroom or prosciutto. On the cheese end, you can go with parmesan and mozzarella for a tasty combination.

The Stats

Harvested: October 2016
Brix @ Harvest: 21
pH: 3.0
TA: 6.5 g/L
ABV: 12%
Residual Sugar: 0.0%
Vineyard: Daddy Long Legs, Benzie County, MI
Bottling Date: February 2017
Level of Acidity: Low
Tannin Level: Low
Oak Level: None
Ageability: 2 Years
Body: Light

Secret Beach is Back!

Secret Beach is Back!

Every good Northern Michigan resident has their favorite secret beach – a spot they can go to relax and enjoy some peace around the big water that surrounds us.

We strongly believe everyone needs a secret beach to call their own, to escape from the day to day grind, and that’s why we bottled one for you. We give you … 2016 Secret Beach – our table white wine blend that has finally returned to the tasting room and a store shelf near you.

One of our most popular wines, Secret Beach is a tropical delight of flavors. This year our blend is 65% Vignoles, 31% Riesling, and 4% Muscat Ottonel. You’re probably familiar with vignoles and riesling, and also (if you’re anything like me) shaking your head at muscat ottonel.

What is Muscat Ottonel?

Let’s head to the ever-helpful Wikipedia:

Muscat Ottonel is a white wine grape variety that is a member of the Muscat family of Vitis vinifera. It is most notable for its use in dessert wines from Austria, Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia and Serbia as well as dry wines from Alsace and Hungary. In Alsace, the varietal designation Muscat d’Alsace is allowed for the varieties Muscat Ottonel, Muscat blanc à petit grains and Muscat rose à petit grains blended in any combination -or not- (but not for other members of the Muscat family), and blends between these are not allowed for most Alsace Grands Crus.

First cultivated in Alsace by the Loire grower Moreau-Robert in 1852, Muscat Ottonel is believed to be a cross of Chasselas with Muscat de Saumur(which was originally given as “Muscat d’Eisenstadt”).

That clears it up, right?

The Flavor of Secret Beach

Secret Beach is a jubilee of tropical fruit flavors. You’ll notice hints of peach, pear, passion fruit, and pineapple in your glass. You can also pick up just a hint of coconut. It’s a light body wine, with bright acidity, and 10% alcohol by volume.

The Stats

Harvest Date: October 2016
Brix @ Harvest: 20.8*
pH: 2.9
Blend: 65% Vignoles, 31% Riesling, 4% Muscat Ottonel
ABV: 10%
Residual Sugar: 3.6%
TA: 10.6 g/L
Fermentation: Stainless Steel
Level of Acidity: High
Tannin Level: Low
Oak Level: None
Ageability: Short-Medium (2 years)
Bottling Date: 3-1-2017
Vineyard: Daddy Long Legs, Benzie Co.
Winemaker: Michael Altesleben

Food Pairings

We recommend a tropical flair to go with Secret Beach. Some ideas include coconut shrimp, a jerk-seasoning (perhaps on some chicken), or a dessert with tropical fruits. For cheese, go with vlaskaas or cow milk gouda.

Find Your Secret Beach

You can get Secret Beach in our tasting room, in our web store, or request it at your favorite local wine shop.

Six Holiday Wines

Six Holiday Wines

You may have heard about the new discount in the tasting room. If you haven’t, get ready: you get 10% off (and a free travel wine key) if you buy six bottles of our wine! Armed with that info, it’s time to prepare for the holiday season. You’ve got parties to attend, gifts to give, and then more parties to attend. You need to bring something, or give something, for all these events. We all know wine is the best gift – and this six pack of wine is going to cover all your bases. Let’s dive in on another #WineWednesday …

Christmas Parties


You’re heading to a Christmas party, and you know someone is making dinner. The menu at these things can be all over the place, and you want to bring a bottle of wine. How to prepare? Take one red, and one white, of our best food-pairing bottles. These two wines will hold their own against all the sumptuous flavors you encounter this holiday season.

Syrah – which we talked about last week – is a bold red that works well with the hearty meals we often eat during the winter months.

Our Vin Gris is one of our most popular white wines, and it’s exceptional for pairing with food. You can’t go wrong with each other choice, and they’ll both be welcome at any table you head to this winter.

Gift Giving


Tell someone you love how special they are with a nice bottle of wine. Simple, classic, and elegant, wine is a great gift idea. Really, it’s great anytime.

The two bottles we’ve selected here are excellent gifting bottles. Our Late Harvest Riesling is a sweet, unique taste of Northern Michigan that will make a stellar addition to anyone’s cellar. On the red side, our classic Cottage Red is a table red wine that is at home in any setting.

Ring in the New Year


You’ll be the life of the party if you show up with our New Year wines. First, we’ve got our 2013 Pinot Noir – a traditional red wine that’ll be great for getting the festivities warmed up. For the later evening, we’ve got our exquisite Royal Reserve. This dessert mead has a rich, sweet flavor that pairs well with a New Year’s cigar, or some delectable chocolates.