May 2014 - 2014 Midwest Wine Challenge

This month's Wine feature is 2013 Midwest Wine Challenge
Wines
2014 Midwest Wine Challenge Reviews
206240
Schade Creek
2013 "Creme de la Creme Blanc" Iowa
Pale platinum straw color. Floral aromas suggest pears in sauce, peaches in cream, and banana blossoms with a silky, fruity light-to-medium body and a tangy lime sorbet finish. Very refreshing and satisfying.
94 points $12 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206300
Calico Skies
2012 Frontenac
Garnet violet color. Aromas of raspberry tart and choke cherry jam with a silky, tart medium body and a pure, melon, marinated beet, toffee, and earth accented finish. A flavorful, well-balanced and savory choice for bbq or even roasted beet salads. Very impressive.
93 points $18.95 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206314
Illinois Sparkling Co.
2011 "Franken's" Brut Illinois
Brassy golden pink color. Aromas of berries and French toast with a crisp, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a mouthwatering lime, watermelon, nectarine, and mineral accented finish. Great zesty flavors and structure reminiscent of a fine blanc de noir Champagne.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206316
Illinois Sparkling Co.
2012 "Dollface Rosè" Illinois
Scarlet amber color. Aromas of berries and cherries in cream and almond nougat with fruity light-to-medium body and a tangy, ripe blood orange finish. A zesty choice for sipping or spicy foods.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206233
Botham
2012 "Finis" American
Platinum straw color. Interesting aromas of blooming pine forest, yellow apple, and honeyed papaya with a soft, fruity light-to-medium body and a tangy, orange-lemon sorbet, melon, and nutskin finish with grippy fruit tannins. A deliciously satisfying sipper or try with scallops.
91 points $9 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206299
Calico Skies
2012 Cranberry American
Pale ruby pink color. Dramatic aromas of fresh and baked cranberries, honeycomb, and citrus zest with a tangy, medium body and a zesty, pure, and nicely balanced, spicy, earthy finish. A spot on fruit wine that is not too sweet and would be a good foil for Asian pork and beef dishes. Cocktail options abound too.
91 points $17 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206315
Illinois Sparkling Co.
2011 "Stereo" Sparkling Blend Illinois
Silvery straw color with a white mousse. Aromas of nectarine, apple crisp, and cream with a crisp, fruity medium body and a tangy vanilla nougat and Meyer lemon accented finish. A mouthwatering, fruity sparkler.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206257
Easley
NV "Jubilee" American
Pale ruby color. Aromas of blueberries, mulberries, melon rind, cornichon, and aloe with a fruity sweet medium body and a honeyed raisin, molasses cookie, and mint finish. A nicely layered dessert wine to go with blue cheeses.
90 points $8.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206287
Train Wreck Winery
2012 "Orphan Train" Iowa
Copper salmon pink color. Aromas of warm apricot compote and buttery pralines with a silky, fruity medium-to-full body and a tangy sour cherry and blood orange accented finish. A delicious, appetizing rosé that dances to its own beat.
90 points $13.95 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206226
Strother Ridge
2012 Chardonel
Golden straw color. Aromas of sweet apples, vanilla cream, and praline with a fruity, medium body and a tangy, earthy, pineapple, banana leaf, and lemon gelato finish. Very tasty and great integration of fruit and oak.
90 points $15 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206225
Strother Ridge
2013 Vidal Blanc
Pale straw color. Attractive aromas of Key lime pie and peach yogurt with a silky, fruity sweet medium body and a tangy tangerine, melon, and earth finish. A nice sipper or serve with spicy grilled shrimp.
89 points $13 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206288
Train Wreck Winery
2012 "Caboose" Iowa
Golden yellow color. Attractive aromas of banana-nut bread, honeyed dried stone fruits, toasted meringue with a silky, fruity sweet medium-to-full body and a tangy white grape juice, apple sauce and pear tart finish. Very tasty and will be great with ice cream.
89 points $13.95 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206243
Schade Creek
2013 "Creme de la Creme Rogue" Iowa
Dull ruby color with a bronze rim. Aromas of stewed tomatoes and cherries, roasted nuts, and mocha with a silky, dryish light-to-medium body and a tangy dried strawberry, blood orange, and earth accented finish. A nicely styled table wine reminiscent of a Valpolicella Ripasso.
89 points $15 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206304
Calico Skies
2012 La Crescent
Pale silver straw color. Aromas of lilac, apricot marmalade, and baklava with a crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tart, drying Meyer lemon and Macintosh apple skin finish. A nice dry Muscadet like wine that will be great with shellfish.
89 points $16 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206236
August Hill Winery
NV "Ravat 51" Illinois
Pale platinum straw color. Aromas of grapes on the vine, orange pith, and almond nougat with a dryish light-to-medium body and a tart lemon ice and earth finish with chewy fruit tannins. A dry, tightly-wound, Germanic-styled wine reminiscent of sylvaner that will excel at the table with seafood.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206248
Easley
NV "Reggae Red" American
Ruby red color. Aromas and flavors of honeyed cherries and grapes with a fruity sweet medium body and a grape soda and angel food cake finish. Simple, but very pleasant, tasty, and well made; try with fried ice cream.
88 points $7.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206259
Easley
Regal Tej Honey Wine
Golden yellow color. Aromas of floral talc, apple tart, and citrus zest with a soft, sweetish light body and a honey yogurt and yeasty pound cake accented finish. A solid, off-dry mead.
88 points $8.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206255
Easley
2012 Chambourcin
Ruby color. Aromas of maple nut fudge and berry tart with a supple, dryish medium body and a tangy blackberry and creamy mocha accented finish. A rock solid chambourcin with a nice kiss of oak. Serve with a slight chill.
88 points $9.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206091
St. James
2012 "Cynthiana" Ozark Highlands
Garnet purple color. Aromas of dark berries and nuts with a crisp, dryish medium body and a tart blueberry skin finish.
88 points $10.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206229
Botham
2012 "Latitude 43" American
Golden yellow color. Interesting aromas of pecan-almond nougat, honey, apple cider vinaigrette, and cake flour with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a dried pineapple, delicate spice, and herb accented finish. Quite a unique range of flavors. Try with Thai food.
88 points $12 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206252
Easley
NV "Indiana Champagne" American
Golden yellow color. Aromas and flavors of peach custard tart and apple sauce with an effervescent fruity sweet medium body and a crisp, lively finish. A simple but very pleasant off-dry sparkler.
88 points $12.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206289
Train Wreck Winery
2012 "Gandy Dancer" Iowa
Interesting aromas of brewer’s yeast, clay, honeydew, and Asian pear are very sake-like with a crisp, dry-yet-fruity light body and a tangy, sweet tangerine, green apple, and Playdoh accented cider-like finish. Flavorful, fruity, and different.
88 points $13.95 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206296
Calico Skies
2012 "Sun Dog" American
Pale ruby color. Aromas of strawberry sauce and sour cherries with a tangy, medium body and a pure craisin and peppery spice accented finish. A nice bright table wine. Try with Thai food.
88 points $14.50 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206090
St. James
2013 Vignoles
Floral aromas of dried apricot and peach blossoms with a silky, fruity medium body and a tart, peach-apple tart finish. A very nice sipper with great purity of fruit.
88 points $14.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206223
Strother Ridge
2013 Vignoles
Pale golden color. Aromas of musk perfume, cling peaches, circus peanut, and honeycomb with a fruity sweet light-to-medium body and a tangy green apple and clementine finish. Very nice.
88 points $15 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206305
Calico Skies
2012 Frontenac Gris
Pale golden color. Attractive toasty aromas of freshly baked peach cobbler and grape custard with a silky, fruity-yet-dry medium body and a tart clementine and chalk finish. A nicely structured sipper or table wine.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206303
Calico Skies
2012 Traminette
Golden yellow color. Aromas of yellow roses, limes, lychee and green apples with a crisp, dryish light-to-medium body and a tangy finish. A nice shellfish wine.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206235
August Hill Winery
NV "Heart & Soul" Illinois
Bright silvery fuchsia color. Fragrant aromas of honeyed cherries and raspberries with a silky, fruity-yet-dry medium body and a crisp, apple and lemon accented finish. A very pleasant sipper, culpable of being gulpable.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206298
Calico Skies
2012 Blueberry American
Garnet color. Aromas and flavors of blueberry cobbler and cider with a supple, fruity medium body and a crunchy tannin finish. Nice purity and gulpabillity; try pairing with spicy bbq too.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206159
Twisted Vine
2012 Cranberry Missouri
Pale ruby color. Pure cranberry sauce aromas and flavors with a fruity light-to-medium body and a zesty spiced lime accented finish. Tasty; try with goat cheeses and champagne cocktails.
88 points $17.61
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206224
Strother Ridge
2012 Norton
Dark ruby color. Aromas of floral talc, cream, and dried strawberries with a soft, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a crisp cranberry, lime, nougat, and cedar accented finish.
87 points $15 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206230
Botham
2012 "Big Stuff Red" American
Dusty ruby color. Aromas of baked cherries and gingerbread with a tangy, light-to-medium body and a refreshing pomegranate-blueberry juice finish. Nice.
86 points $10 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206231
Botham
2012 Riesling
Pale silvery straw color. Aromas of peach, lemon ice, and cream of tartar with a crisp, off-dry light body and a tangy, grape and leaf accented finish.
86 points $10 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206241
Schade Creek
2012 "Harlan Henry" Iowa
Ruby color. Aromas of chocolate covered graham cracker and frosted cherry danish with a silky, fruity medium body and a honeyed nut, sour cherry, and delicate dusty cedar and spice finish.
86 points $15 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206157
Twisted Vine
2011 Homestead Norton
Deep garnet black color. Aromas of berry vinaigrette, nuts, and leather with a silky, dryish medium body and a tart, cranberry and mint finish. An appetizing table wine.
86 points $17.91
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206313
Illinois Sparkling Co.
2011 "Heirloom" Sparkling Rose Illinois
Pretty pale crimson amber color. Aromas of toasty honeyed berry pastry and rubber sap with a supple, fruity-yet-dry medium body and a tart lemon and green apple finish. A racy, rose sparkler for the table.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206237
August Hill Winery
NV "Sweet William" Illinois
Pale straw color. Aromas of toasted nuts, honeyed lemon and melon rind, and beeswax with a crisp, fruity sweet medium body and a exotic tropical fruit compote, raisin stem, and wax candy finish. Serve with cheeses.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206306
Calico Skies
2012 Brianna
silvery straw color. Floral potpourri and orange gelatin aromas with an off-dry light-to-medium body and a tangy white grape juice and apple skin and leaf finish. A nice off-dry sipper or salad wine.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206250
Easley
NV "Reggae White" American
Pale platinum straw color. Aromas almond nougat, baked peach, and apple sauce with a fruity sweet light-to-medium body and a honeyed pear and nut oil accented finish.
84 points $7.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206253
Easley
NV "Sweet Barrel Red" American
Garnet color. Aromas and flavors of honeyed toasted walnuts, baked cherries and grapes with a silky, fruity sweet light-to-medium body and a tangy, mellow finish.
84 points $8.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206254
Easley
2013 Traminette
Silvery straw color. Aromas of pressed flowers, dolmades, balsa, and pear with a crisp, tangy, light body and a slightly dilute, subtle earthy finish.
84 points $9.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206258
Easley
2011 Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark ruby black color. Aromas of spicy berry pie a la mode and graham cracker with a silky, dryish medium body and a whole nut, sour cherry, chocolate mint, and earth nuanced finish.
84 points $9.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206089
St. James
2013 Pioneer White Ozark Highlands
Pale straw color. Aromas of apple-pear tart with a silky, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a tangy, nectarine and cream finish.
84 points $10.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206242
Schade Creek
2013 "Getto Fab" Iowa
Pale garnet pink color. Aromas of fallen raspberries, cherry pit and moss with a crisp, tangy light-to-medium body and a tart pomegranate finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206244
Schade Creek
2013 Winemaker's Reserve Iowa
Dusty ruby color. Interesting aromas of plums, goji berries, and crispy chicken skin with a sweet and sour light-to-medium body and a grape and earth finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206307
Calico Skies
2012 Geisenheim
Pale golden silver color. Aromas of mango papaya relish and grape blossoms with a soft fruity light body and a tangy grape-lemon granita and nutskin finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206228
Botham
2012 "Field 3" Wisconsin
Garnet violet color. Aromas of dried berries, cherries and waxy honeycomb with a tangy, dryish light-to-medium body and a cranberry, lime, and mint accented finish with papery tannins.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206312
Illinois Sparkling Co.
2011 Sparkling Brut Illinois
Pale straw. Aromas of lemon zest and rubber with a crisp, finely carbonated light body and a tart green apple core.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206249
Easley
NV "Reggae Blush" American
Pink ruby color. Aromas of dried limes, dried mulberries and grapes, and bison grass with tangy, fruity sweet light-to-medium body and a tangy apple cider and wax candy finish.
83 points $7.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206232
Botham
2012 "Vin 10" American
Aromas and flavor of lemon poppyseed muffin and waxy honeycomb with a soft, light body and slightly dilute honeydew melon rind and leafy earth finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206256
Easley
2012 Chardonnay
Pale silvery straw color. Aromas of stone fruit, yeasty soda bread, and overripe apples with a soft, dry light body and a brisk nut, melon rind, and oak finish. Try as a white sangria base.
83 points $9.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206297
Calico Skies
2012 "Sweet Licks" American
Pale garnet color. Aromas of grape juice and spice cookies with a tangy, light body and a dried berry, exotic sea salt, and hint of Elmer’s glue on oak on the tannic finish. Try with flank steak.
83 points $12.50
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206302
Calico Skies
2012 Chambourcin
Ruby color. Aromas of peppercorn, cedar, and mulberries with soft, dry light-to-medium body and a tart blackberry and bark finish.
83 points $18.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
206301
Calico Skies
2012 Marquette
Ruby color. Aroma of cherry skin, nougat, and wax with a tart dry light body and a slightly oxidized cherry vinegar, tamari, and nutshell note on the finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
Shortcut: http://www.tastings.com/Calendar-Wine/Review-2014-05-04-2014-Midwest-Wine-Challenge-.aspx