Event Review: 2012 Tawas Uncork’d and Untap’d

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We were truly looking forward to the Tawas Uncork’d and Untap’d event on the Sunrise Side of the Michigan because we have heard so many good things about it. This is their 4th year of having this event but this was our first time attending. Having some of our favorite Michigan wineries all together in one place is just serenity to us! If you have never attended one of these wonderful wine, beer, and food events, we highly recommend it. It gives you a chance to meet the people who work at the wineries and it allows you to get to know about their wines and beer. You get to sample and compare the types of wines and the styles you enjoy most. And you learn so much from the winemakers and hosts that you almost feel kind of guilty about drinking wine for fun and actually learning something at the same time! Should we feel guilty about this pleasure and education all at once? Naw! All the proceeds from this event went to the local East Tawas Library so you know your money was well spent and going to a charity that enhances reading and education.

We drove up from the Detroit area that morning and it was a sunny, gorgeous day! But boy was it a hot, humid day! We definitely recommend having a glass of water after each glass of wine to keep hydrated. We picked up our wine glasses and tickets at the gate and bought some raffle tickets – great prizes for a great cause! Lots of vendors selling wine accessories, shirts, hats, and anything else you can think of that pairs with the wine experience. Inside the tent was brimming with the sights, sounds, and smells of a fun, party atmosphere! Wine was being uncorked, beer was being tapped, cool jazz music was floating into our ears, and good food was being prepared by local restaurants. If you want a sensory overload, here is where you want it to happen! There were at least 13 Michigan wineries and 12 breweries, restaurants, and food tables to whet your appetite! As we tasted and sipped our way through the menu, local musicians played jazz, light rock, and other fun vibes to get the crowd moving and tapping their toes.

But our main focus of the day was to taste some good wines and meet the people who are passionate about the wines they produce for us to enjoy. We couldn’t make it to all the tables but for the wineries we did miss, we are making plans to visit you in person soon. We did meet the vivacious Stephanie from Rose Valley Winery in Rose City and loved the passion she had for her wines and the whole wine experience! She gave us a lot of great ideas and confirmed why we enjoy writing about the Michigan wine experience. We enjoyed the dry Red Table Wine and the Summer Trails white wine from Rose Valley Winery. We will be back for more soon!

Another woman with a passion for wine and more knowledge and information than I could write down was Christine from Bel Lago Winery in Cedar, Michigan. Bel Lago means “beautiful lake” in Italian and the wine produced there has a beauty of its own. Here we enjoyed the bright and elegant Pinot Grigio and the flavorful Bel Lago Red wine.

Mark Carlson from Silver Leaf Vineyards & Winery in Suttons Bay is a man also passionate about his wines and the wine experience. Mark is the owner and winemaker at Silver Leaf and enjoys all aspects of running a great authentic winery. We loved the fresh “Sur Li” Chardonnay and the fun Purple Passion house red blend. Mark truly knows the wine industry and we enjoyed learning all the aspects from his experience.

Deb & Dave Burgdorf from Burgdorf Winery in Haslett believe that each glass of wine is “A Moment in Wine” – something that can be enjoyed over and over again. Well, we felt that way about their wines and loved the Burgdorf’s Dry Riesling and Vidal Blanc. The Vidal Blanc won a gold medal and Best of Class in the recent Indiana Wine Competition (the 2nd largest in the U.S.) – two great wines from people passionate about their wines.

Dan from Chateau Fontaine in Lake Leelanau gave us a long, impressive list of all their award winning wines so how could we turn down trying a few? One of our favorite wines of the day was the Woodland White made from a little known French grape called Auxerrois. And we also loved the new Dry Rose they just released earlier that week – fun, fruity, and refreshing!

Another woman passionate about her wines and the Michigan wine experience was the lovely Channing from Forty-Five North Winery. We have our own Wine Doxie “Daisy” but this winery has many more wine dogs: a Yorkie, a Newfoundland, a Weimaraner and a Corgie – all fun greeters as you enjoy your visit to their winery! Here we loved the Dry Riesling which just won a gold medal in San Francisco. And the sparkling Peach Cremant which is perfect for your summer patio or a festive boat wine!

There were a few wineries that were busy when we got to the table so we couldn’t really talk to the winery rep but enjoyed your wines. Kyle at Chateau Chantal Winery brought an excellent Pinot Blanc that was wonderful, fresh, and refreshing! Also the semi-sweet Twilight was soft and fruity. Barb at Mackinaw Trail Winery brought a wonderful Dry Riesling and a fun, fruity Cherry Sangria. We enjoyed the Black Star Farms Arcturos Pinot Noir and the Arcturos Sur Lie Chardonnay. And we can’t forget Fenn Valley Winery and their rich & creamy Pinot Grigio. Perfect refresher on a hot summer day!

This is an event that we will always remember. It had the right mood music, the right food, and the right beer and wines. Even though the weather was hot and humid, all the local Tawas volunteers were so wonderful, cheerful, and helpful. Plus the breeze off of Lake Huron helped cool things off. If you have never attended one of these food, wine, and beer events, add it to your bucket list today! We spent the weekend in East Tawas with one day at Tawas Uncork’d and one day exploring the Lake Huron beaches. It’s a serenity that you can only find on the Sunrise Side of the state at Lake Huron and we look forward to doing it all over again next year! Cheers!

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