Heat Up the Holidays with Michigan Drinks

Chateau Chantal Oak Aged Brandy, Cinq a Sept

Chateau Chantal announced today the release of their first oak-aged brandy. If you can’t make it to Traverse City, Troy Hammond, award-winning home brewer and beer afficionado, has some local microbrew recommendations to make your holidays merry.

Cinq à Sept

December 21, 2011 Traverse City, MI: Old Mission Peninsula winery and inn, Chateau Chantal, released their first production of an oak aged brandy.  The brandy has been given the French name “Cinq à Sept” (sank-ah-set) literally, “five to seven,” a French Canadian term for Happy Hour.  In France, this phrase was originally used as a description of the time of day a Frenchman would visit his mistress, perhaps with a gift of Brandy in tow?

Distilled from fermented Northern Michigan grapes on location at Chateau Chantal, this Brandy spent five years mellowing in a French oak barrel, gaining a golden color and rich caramel flavor.  Displaying notes of honey, spice, and butterscotch, this sipper is best served in a Brandy snifter, or other wide bottomed glass, to promote the release of the fine aromas. Serve at room temperature or over ice to create your own delightful gathering.  $39.99 for 750 ml, 40% alc.

Cinq à Sept is available only at the winery, which is open daily except for Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.  The brandy is now available for sampling at the winery for a fee.  Further information about the tasting room can be found online at www.chateauchantal.com.

And now for the beer . . .

These picks are not for the faint of heart, but they should make any family get together more bearable, and would also be perfect for sipping in front of a roaring fire with your significant other. In no particular order, here are Troy’s picks for this holiday season:

New Holland Brewing

Dragon’s Milk (10% ABV, Oak Aged Stout)

Imperial Hatter (9.4%, Imperial IPA)

Night Tripper (10.8% ABV, Imperial Stout)


Breakfast Stout (8.3% ABV, Double Chocolate Coffee Oatmeal Stout)

Dirty Bastard (8.5 % ABV, Scotch Style Ale)

Double Trouble (9.4% ABV, Imperial IPA)


Final Absolution (8.5% ABV, Belgian Style Trippel)

Under the Kilt (7.8% ABV, Wee Heavy)

What will you be drinking this season?

(please drink responsibly)

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