Through the 1980s, Vignoles was a staple offering of wineries in the Leelanau Peninsula of Michigan. Larry Mawby, who now concentrates on producing high quality sparkling wines, made excellent Vignoles and Vignoles Reserve wines that were always on my buying list. In fact, I still have a couple of bottles of Mawby Vignoles from 1982 and 1983 that I will open soon, mainly for curiosity because 27 years is a bit much for even a well made Vignoles. My other favorite Vignoles during that period was made by Bernie Rink at Boskydel Vineyards. When I finally found my way to Bernie's tasting room last summer, I was delighted to find that he is still making a dry Vignoles, perhaps the only one on the peninsula. I bought two bottles and opened the first last August, finding it to be a throwback to the Vignoles of old that I loved so much. A year later, I opened the second bottle and found the kind of change and development to be expected of a fine wine.
The color is now a deep gold, showing signs of maturity. The bouquet takes awhile to open but shows sweet scents of white flowers. Pineapple flavors dominate the palate, ripe and full bodied with racy acidity. Flavors cling to the back of the throat.
Boskydel is no longer available in wine stores or supermarkets in my area, but at the winery this wine sells for $8.99 a bottle or $65 a case. That's an incredible case discount, and I plan to pick up a case the next time I make it to Leelenau.