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I left for vacation in summer and came back to a chilly fall!

We’ve got distinct changes in the weather and distinct changes coming to the store. There’s little one can do to avoid change… it's a new season.

Hours of Operation

Monday – Saturday

10am to 6pm

Calendar 🗓

October 28 (Saturday) - The last grilling event of the season and the last Saturday for the patio… We’ll toss some sweet and hot Italian rope sausage on the grill, fry up some onions and peppers, and serve them all day long on a toasted garlic roll. Great beer, great wine, and some great food to end the grilling season here at the Wine Merchant.

November 7 (Tuesday) - Our annual Alternative Wine Dinner. We are now taking reservations for this annual wine dinner, so please call to reserve your space.

November 16 (Thursday) - It's that time of year again... Beaujolais Nouveau! As usual, to celebrate the new release, we will have French fare all day long, so make sure to add this exciting day to your calendars.

Store News 🏬

Plenty of store news this week to share with you. The first item: let’s be honest -- everything has gone up in price... rent, energy, wages, wholesale costs of both beer and wine, shipping, and of course, credit card transaction fees. Processing fees for credit cards continue to rise, and we’ve reached the point that we need to pass a bit of that on too our credit card users like the rest of the retail world. Beginning November 1, all CC purchases will include a 3% surcharge. We held out as long as we could, but these fees have become overbearing for us as a small business. Obviously this will not affect cash and/or personal check transactions, but for all credit card users (like myself), this new surcharge will appear on your transactions beginning the first of next month. Now on a more positive note, a new wine list is coming out tomorrow! Last but certainly not least… we will be announcing new store and bar hours in next week's newsletter.

Wine News🍷

Hey, a new wine list... isn’t that enough wine news?? We’re beginning to focus on wines for the holidays. Last week, I mentioned that our Champagne pre-orders have begun to arrive. Other pre-orders for wines and allocations are coming in as well. It appears that, yes, there are increases across the board, but supply issues have lessened greatly. I’ll reiterate one of constant missions down here: anyone can buy and sell an expensive bottle of wine; the trick is finding that bottle that drinks like the expensive one but yet costs significantly less. We enjoy finding wines that, while tasting like a million dollars, are priced so that you can buy a few to get you through the weekend.

Dan’s Feature ⭐️

One of my favorite winemakers is none other than Australian Chris Ringland. Chris helped establish the Australian wine explosion in the States back in the early 2000s and is now assisting in producing this week's feature. His style of wine is what I most look forward to, and I would probably purchase anything this man touches -- thus my choice for this week.

“Alto Moncayo/Veraton 2020 Garnacha is my feature for this week. Bodegas Alto Moncayo is a winery located in the Campo de Borja D.O. It was founded in 2002 with the aim of turning it into a world reference for Garnacha wines of the highest quality, crafted from some of the oldest native vine clones in the area.The garnacha grape is one of the varieties that best expresses its terroir. Thus, the Garnacha of Alto Moncayo is different from the rest of the Campo de Borja D.O area. This is due to the very strict selection made from the vineyards, the type of soil in which it is grown, the microclimate, and the age of the vines. Located in Borja - the heart of the Campo de Borja DO. Vines are planted at the foothills of El Moncayo which is the highest point in the Iberian Mountain Range (2,315 m) and the winery’s namesake. The region experiences a continental climate with hot summers and cold winters. Vineyards are planted on very unique soils of red clay (indicative of being rich in iron) mixed with red slate, and because of the hillside location are shallow and nutrient-deficient. The Garnacha grapes of Alto Moncayo undergo very strict vineyard selection, from vines planted as far back as the early 1900s through the 1970s. Only the most perfectly mature clusters are selected and carried in small crates to prevent crushing, where they are further sorted and selected at triage tables. Wines undergo malolactic fermentation in both French & American oak, and aged in new barrels between anywhere from 16-24 months. These practices, in combination with the unique microclimate of the area ensure superior quality Garnacha that is distinct from any other in the Campo de Borja D.O.” Tasting notes describe this 92+ it as being, “an elegant red, with a dark fruit core of boysenberry coulis, black plum reduction and dried fig buoyed by fresh, well-cut acidity. Delivers an appealing range of star anise, mocha, dried mint and rose hip notes that add detail and complexity, while lightly chalky tannins firm the graphite- and spice-laced finish.” There are few bottles at $39.99 that can compare to this exquisite example of Grenache. If you just want a great glass of red, with or without food, there’s no question that this is that bottle!

Dan’s Pick 🥂

This week’s pick is definitely something cheap and cheerful… Fantini 2021 Ceraluso d’Abruzzo Rosé! This inexpensive little pick is perfect for fall days, for tailgating, or in any other setting you choose. I normally shy away from older rosés; this bottle, however, overdelivered for the price. Pork, chicken, brats, or whatever is coming off an early Fall grilling day, this bottle will be an excellent choice. Darker in color than many others, it has body and structure for pairing with foods or for drinking solo. “Fantini Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo DOC is bright pink in color, intense and persistent aroma, fruity with hints of strawberry. Medium-bodied, balanced, intense and with great persistence. The goal of the winery is to produce wines that are an excellent value and quality and can be enjoyed by all wine aficionados.” Tasting notes go on to describe, “bright aromas of candied watermelon and pink grapefruit grace the nose of this neon-pink rosato from the Farnese group. It's textural and soft on the entry of the palate, yet a veil of tannins offers a solid frame to flavors of cherry, melon and citrus.” There’s a lot of great press and notes on this wine, but I bought it because it’s a great value purchase for any rosé lover. Simple as that: inexpensive, drinks above its price point, and promises to be a crowd pleaser. It was a simple choice…

Food News 🐟

We kept our fingers crossed and got in a new item for you this week, Dry Aged 14oz Pork Chops! We tried a few weeks ago and it didn’t arrive, so we’re happy this week is a different story. On another note, we’re attempting to keep in items that will prove quite tasty for this season, and one of those items I took home and had last evening. Our Drake's Raviolis are fantastic, and we carry both the Butternut Squash and the Veal. There’s nothing simpler than boiling water, placing the frozen raviolis in, and waiting for 10/12 minutes. Then just drain them, put a couple slices of butter in the pan and maybe some fresh sage or garlic, then toss the raviolis back in the butter sauce and plate with a little grated cheese. There’s nothing any easier or tastier for a quick and delicious dinner.

Oyster News 🦪

Standish Shore Oysters are this week’s choice. You know these are one of our favorites -- the are pretty big and want to be baked, always fresh and always delicious. From Duxbury, Massachusetts, their well-balanced flavor and sweet-buttery texture make them a great choice for the perfect Atlantic oyster. With sizes from 2.75” to 3.5”, they are very versatile for a full-bodied oyster on the half shell and almost a meal-baked for Rockefeller. Either way, they're here, they’re fresh, and we’re ready to shuck! We also brought in our other Canadian favorites, Acadian Pearls, for some great half shell selects. Last week we ran out, so this week, we’re prepared!

Market Items 🛒

*Fresh Hand Cut Prime Strip Steaks - $22.99/lb

*Fresh Wagyu Hanger Steaks, 2 Pack (1lb) - $29.99

*Fresh Wagyu Burgers 4pk - $16.99

*Fresh Oysters - $24 a dozen

*Fresh North Atlantic Salmon - $18.99/lb

*Fresh Sashimi-Grade Ahi Tuna - $18.99/lb

*Fresh Duroc Double Bone-In Pork Chops - $12.99

Frozen Wild Caught Halibut - $29.99/lb

Frozen Duroc Dry Aged Bone-In Pork Chops, 14oz - $15.99

Frozen Whole BMS 6/7 Wagyu Tenderloin - $39.99/lb (1 remaining)

Frozen CAB Steak Burgers 4pk - $14.99

Frozen CAB Dry-Aged Ribeyes - $18.99/lb

Frozen Center Cut 8oz Beef Tenderloin Filets - $16.99

Frozen Choice Sirloin Cap Strip Steaks, 8oz - $9.99

Frozen Lamb Sirloin Roast - $22.99/lb

Frozen Lamb Rack, 2lbs - $49.99

Frozen Spiral Cut Dearborn Hams, approx. 9lb - $27.99

Frozen Bacon-Wrapped Pork Tenderloin - $12.99

Frozen Pre-Cooked Frozen BBQ Ribs (approx. 3lb racks) - $23.99

Frozen Bratwurst, 5pk - $8.99

Frozen Rinaldi Italian Sausages, 4 per pound - $8.99

Frozen Dearborn Knockwurst, 5pk - $8.99

Frozen Black Pepper Bacon - $14.99

Frozen Chilean Sea Bass, 6oz - $16.99

Frozen Buddy’s Detroit Style Pizzas (Cheese or Pepperoni) - $17.99

Frozen Ahi Saku Block Tuna AAA Sushi Grade, avg. 16oz - $19.99

Frozen U-16/20 Raw Shrimp deveined (1lb package) - $19.99

Frozen U-10 Scallops - $29.99/lb

Frozen Lobster Tails, 2pk - $35.99

Frozen Whole Petite Potatoes - $8.99

Frozen Oven-Roasted Potato Wedges - $8.99

Frozen Arrezzio Basil Pesto, 16oz - $18.99

Fresh/Frozen Bacchini Strozzapreti from Italy - $14.99/lb (serving for 2)

Fresh/Frozen Bacchini Lobster & Crab Tortelli from Italy - $16.99 1/2 lb

Fresh/Frozen Drake’s Pasta Ravioli (Veal or Butternut Squash) - $12.99/lb (serving for 2)

1932’s Pasta Sauce (Arrabbiata, Pomodorina with Fresh Basil, Pomodorina with Barolo) - $7.99

Maurizio Casarecce Dried Pasta from Italy - $7.99

Maurizio Spaghetti Chitarra Dried Pasta from Italy - $7.99

Maurizio Trofie Dried Pasta from Italy - $7.99

Tribeca Bakery Bread (Rosemary or Asiago) - $5.50

New Wine🍷

Four Vines 2020 The Biker Zinfandel, California - $18.99

Joel Falmet NV Les Parcelles Brut Champagne, France - $48.99

Ca’ Furian Cuvée Beatrice Prosecco, Italy - $16.99

Lava Cap 2021 Merlo, California - $24.99

Ken Wright Cellars 2022 Pinot Noir, Oregon $29.99

Fantini 2021 Chardonnay, Italy - $10.99

Fantini 2021 Sangiovese, Abruzzi, Italy - $14.99

Fantini 2021 Ceraluso d’ Abruzzo Rosé, Italy - $9.99

A. Margaine 2015 Special Club Champagne, France - $114.99

Geoffroy Expression Brut Champagne, 1.5 L, France - $129.99

New Beer 🍺

Believe it or not... Christmas beers are arriving! We got in a few big ones to start us out this week.

Troegs Mad Elf Holiday Ale, 6pk bottles - $16.99

Great Lakes Christmas Ale, 6pk bottles - $12.99

Great Lakes Barrel-Aged Christmas Ale, 4pk cans - $24.99

Samuel Smith Gift Box, 3-20oz bottles with a glass - $14.99

Duck-Rabbit Porter, 6pk bottles - $10.99

Kegs - 1/6 Barrel 🛢

Outerbelt Glasstown Lager - $109.99

Tröeg’s Perpetual IPA - $114.99

Duck-Rabbit Amber - $135.99

Final Thoughts 💬

Wines, beers, menus, and hours all change and all is well, but when we are facing increasing costs across the board, we feel like we have no other choice but to add the surcharge. It’s been used extensively throughout town the past few years, and whereas we debated placing it on last year, we decided to wait, wait more, and hope that it wouldn’t come to this. We’ve done our best to keep costs down, but this is something that we just can’t kick down the road any further. We hope you understand and continue to support us.

Cheers from all of us here at the Wine Merchant!

📞 419-424-0391

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