The Bridge News
June 2020 - Vol. 39
Welcome to the Bridge
Bridging all aspects of our Winery from the Vineyard, to
the Cellar, Winery Grounds, Tasting Room and beyond. Our ongoing newsletter is an ideal way to stay up to date with all aspects of the Winery
and our newest wine releases!
Update from the Tasting Room
Come and Picnic with Us!
By Tasting Room Manager Tess Jonson

Sorry to say but for now things are still the same here in the tasting room. We are definitely being optimistic and hoping that things will change soon, very soon. Once we get that green light to open up for tastings we will let you all know ASAP.

Things to know, in the future the tastings may be different! We may have to start with semi-private (socially distant) tastings by appointment so make sure you stay up to date of the status of winery and maybe call before you come in.  If you like the scenic river drive and don't mind what the status is, then just come on in for a bottle or two or have a picnic.

We always welcome picnicking!

Grand Island is open for sales, pickups and picnicking, so if you'd like to come enjoy the grounds and have a bottle of wine, we would sure enjoy seeing you.  Feel free to give us a call if you'd like, just to make sure we're open, and that the powers that be haven't changed their minds :/

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Featured Wines and Discounts
We have extended these discounts until the end of June so make sure you take advantage!



Pickup Discount ($5 dollars off)


The first thing you will notice about the Bridgehead Red is its striking deep garnet color and amethyst meniscus.  The wine opens into fresh strawberries and blackberry c obbler on the nose, fading into notes of raspberry jam, black pepper, and cedar.  Tart cherry and sweet oak greet your palate and leave your mouth with hints of caramelized su gar and vanilla.  The softness of the wine is a nice counterpoint to the rich tannins, both of which lead to a lingering velvety finish with a hint of creme brulee and berry compote.
We are excited to introduce Bridgehead Bubbles, our new Sparkling Brut Rose.  This sparkling wine is produced in the traditional methode champenoise, which means that the sparkling wine undergoes its second fermentation in the bottle and is allowed to age on yeast lees.  We like this type of production because it brings notes of biscuit, yeast, and brioche to the aroma and provides a smaller more delicate bubble.  For those of you that stick to drinking sparkling wine only for celebrations, it is actually an incredibly food friendly and versatile wine.  The high levels of acidity allow it to be paired with nearly any dish from pizza to rib-eye steak to sushi.  

The 2019 Bridgehead Rouge et Blanc is a delightful blend of youthful Cabernet Franc and Symphony.  This wine is a brilliant ruby and amethyst color and opens with notes of maraschino cherry and candied orange.  The flavors run a gamut of earthy and luscious including hints of lavender, forest loam, cedar box, chocolate and raspberry.  The finish is truly something to behold, it's pleasingly soft and round with just a hint of clean acidity to propel the wine into a long finish.

Grand Island Vineyards Wines - Varietals

Ed and David are very pleased to be releasing our new 2019 Grand Island Vineyards Chardonnay.  This vintage of Chardonnay came into the winery with very high levels of acidity and beautiful fruit character.  We decided to take a slightly different approach to winemaking this year and not use any oak in the production of this wine.  Interestingly, we also used ML fermentation and lees contact to soften the impact of the acidity and to bring complexity to this wine.  It will pair well with a variety of lighter style dishes including sushi, bread and olive oil, ceviche, spring vegetable pasta dishes, and lightly spiced fish cakes.
The wine pours a delicate straw color.  The initial aromas are bright orange zest, lychee, and jasmine blossom.  As the wine opens, hints of ripe bartlett pear, honeydew, and crushed oyster shell begin to emerge.  The palate balances between plucky acidity, fleshy fruit, and minerality without becoming too austere.  A prolonged sense of peach and lemon pithe leave the mouth watering for another sip.
Our 2019 Vin Gris of Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the wines we are most excited to release.  This rosé marks a departure in style from the previous Bridgehead rosé of Cabernet.  We wanted to produce a lighter style rosé that would better highlight the terroir of this estate vineyard.  The term Vin Gris indicates that we produced this wine with no maceration on skins.  This winemaking method creates a wine with significantly less color than our previous rosé.  The wine pours cherry-blossom pink and has a melange of aroma from the start, including dried cherry, gravel, hedgerow, and cedar.  The palate is a refreshing mixture of sweet and tart fruits including plum, rhubarb, and cranberry.  While this wine is rich, it displays elegant grip and a powerful acid profile that will pair exceedingly well with most food.  

The 2018 Grand Island Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon shows the opposite spectrum of our estate Cabernet vineyard from the new Vin Gris of Cabernet.  This 2018 red wine is powerful with a dense brick red color.  The aroma comes across as a brooding dark fruit with a little bit of dust and humidor character to bring balance to the wine.  As the bouquet evolves, the aromas drift towards candied plum, lavender, baking spice, and charred earth.  The tannins are plentiful in this wine but have begun to show a well aged restraint.  The wine finishes juicy with a hint of french oak.
Our winemakers are very excited to introduce their latest pet project to everyone. One of the most exciting parts of working at a winery like Grand Island Vineyards is that they have access to the best grapes possible and control over every aspect of wine-making. The Grand Island Vineyards After Dark is an example of a rare wine style they have the luxury of making for our consumers. This new wine is a Vin Doux Naturel fortified wine.

We used Cabernet Sauvignon grapes from the estate vineyard and fortified them with neutral grape spirits during fermentation. The fermentation finished with a light residual sugar and sat on skins for the next 7 months in an open bin.  This technique allowed our newest dessert wine to gain an impressive complexity. We recommend drinking this wine alone or on the rocks with a twist of lemon as an aperitif. It is also incredible when pairing it with milk chocolate desserts.

This wine pours a beautiful brick red with a hint of orange in the meniscus. The initial notes are cherry, strawberry, spice and earth. The wine is mildly sweet with bracing tannins and a firm alcohol note. It lingers on the palate with prolonged notes of berry compote, sweet brioche, and lavender.


The 2018 Salman Family Reserve Chenin Blanc follows in the same oxidative winemaking method as our previous reserve Chenin Blanc.  We wild fermented the Chenin Blanc and allowed it to mature for a long period in barrels on it yeast sediment. The wine was allowed to naturally oxidize bringing a mouthfeel and aroma found only in this style of wine.  It opens with strong aromas of braeburn apple, vanilla, and star anise.  The wine opens into inviting wisps of brioche and melon.  
The mouthfeel is dense with modest acidity and prolonged finish invoking hints of nectarine and oyster shell.
The 2018 Salman Family Reserve Chardonnay wine  is a beautiful yellow hay hue with initial notes of baked pear, pumpkin spice, and brioche.  As the glass is swirled a mixture of tart green apple and jasmine intoxicate the senses.  The mouthfeel is oily with refreshing punch of acidity and a hint of salinity to bring balance to the wine.  The finish is rich with a prolonged sense of sweet french oak and wisps of grilled stonefruit.
The 2017 Salman Family Reserve Pinot Noir wine  pours a dark brick color with hints of indigo.  Initial notes of burdock root and marasca cherry intrigue the nose.  As the wine opens, aromas of loam, sweet oak, and strawberry lend complexity to the wine. The wine is sinewy on the palate with a supple grip on the finish.  The fresh fruit flavors and vanilla notes bring balance to the austerity of the wine's texture.  The finish is propelled by a nervy burst of acidity that fades into stewed plum and smokey oak.
This limited release bottling features 4 Bordeaux varietals from small blocks at Grand Island Vineyards. This hearty red wine pours an inky amethyst color. The initial aroma of red currant and spiced oak slowly evolves into a medley of rich black cherry, tobacco humidor, toasted oak, and granite. This wine underwent an extended maceration during fermentation that provides a opulent but focused mouthfeel. The finish is prolonged by a sense of elegant french oak and dusty blackberry wrapped in mineral driven acidty.