The Bel Lago Auxerrois 2013 is an estate grown White wine sourced from grapes grown on the Leelanau Peninsula surrounded by Lake Michigan in upstate western Michigan. The Auxerrois grape is common to the Alsace region of France near the border with Germany. It is a close relative of the Chardonnay grape and does well in cool climate growing areas. Bel Lago (Beautiful Lake) is a family owned winery founded in 1987. The Leelanau Peninsula juts out into Lake Michigan and while the lake can be very cold in the winter, it is generally warmer than the air temperature inland and moderates the climate in the vineyards. The Auxerrois was fermented and aged in neutral oak barrels.
The color is pale honey yellow. The nose is melon, ripe apple and a whiff of perfume. This is a crisp, clean wine with a solid, balanced acidity and a mix of tart and mellow flavors. It tastes of honeydew melon, apple and kiwi. The mid-palate adds a little lemon and lime. This is a dry, balanced wine. The finish is full and long.
The Bel Lago Auxerrois 2013 is a solid, no issues, very tasty White wine. While it does have some similarities to Chardonnay, the cool climate and the Leelanau soil bring a whole new dimension. Michigan wines are rapidly developing and improving, it was not that long ago that they were known primarily for fruit wine and sweet wine. Today, many producers are offering excellent, interesting, well-made wines that would fool many wine drinkers in a blind tasting. Michigan wine and the Bel Lago Auxerrois in particular, are worthy of your attention.