South Salt Lake holds the distinction of being the proud home to two urban wineries. Ruth Lewandowski Wines and Kiler Grove Winegrowers each ferment, bottle and sell their wines from small tasting rooms that front larger production operations within the city’s boundaries.
You’ll find wines from both wineries on wine lists at the finest restaurants throughout the state. But if you’d rather pick up their locally produced nectar of the gods and enjoy them at home, both of these hidden gems kindly offered their suggestions for Thanksgiving dinner pairings.
Owner and winemaker Evan Lewandowski might be better known through his position as sommelier at Pago, and it’s his vast knowledge and superior taste that has lead him to create Ruth Lewandowski Wines.
A non-traditionalist in pretty much every sense of the word, Evan scoffs at the idea of a perfect Thanksgiving pairing and instead explains, “I wake up, put whiskey in my coffee and just start opening things I love. In the end, there are so many things on one plate with so many flavors and textures…Thanksgiving is all over the map. It’s crazy to pair just one thing. Find a whole bunch of things you love and then drink all of them all day long!”
That’s advice I’ll take every day of the year, but when pushed, Evan continues, “The new 2013 Boaz is a phenomenal Thanksgiving player.”
It’s just recently been released and is $26.99. Pickup and purchase can be arranged by contacting Evan at 801-230-7331 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Nearby, at Kiler Grove Winegrowers, their 2013 rosé is flowing quickly out the door in preparation for Thanksgiving meals.
Kiler Grove Tasting Room Manager and Wine Educator Rhea Cook says, “Thanksgiving is not the time to trot out your biggest, most expensive wines. Wines should be crisp and refreshing, and not too high in alcohol. I also like something that can take a bit of a chill. Kiler Grove Rosé 2013 holds up to all those requirements, and I also like the way the red fruit flavors and aromas (strawberry, raspberry, watermelon) complement the turkey and cranberry combinations. The fact that it’s fairly high in acidity also makes it a good choice to cut through the array of rich, high-fat side dishes on the table.”
Rhea continues, “Even though our rosé is made from two red grapes (Grenache and Mourvèdre), the juice only spends about six hours in contact with the red skins…enough to get a bit pink, but not long enough to extract much tannin. Grenache gives the wine its delicious ‘red fruit’ vibe, and Mourvèdre brings some earthiness to the wine that makes it a nice pairing with sage-scented stuffing and root vegetables.”
The 2013 rosé is only available at the winery for $15.50 per bottle. The winery is open Wednesday through Saturday from noon to 6:30 p.m.
This Thanksgiving, enjoy the fruits of South Salt Lake wineries’ labor with wines made and sold right here in the state of Utah.