National Chicken Month

Chicken and waffles, chicken pizza, Asian chicken on the grill, chicken satay, chicken sliders - Americans love their chicken.  This makes me hungry for chicken done almost any way.  But what do we pair with chicken?

Prophecy has a Rosé offering.  This brand has the best labels according to our wine team.  This wine can be easily found because of its label.  This is a French Rosé at a very affordable price.  Like European wines this Rosé is delicate, crisp, and bright.  It has red fruits and melon at the mid palate with a crisp and tight finish.  This wine is perfect with salads and light pasta dishes, and chicken dishes. Available in all Family Fare stores.

How about Rosemount Estates Traminer Riesling to pair with Asian grilled chicken? This wine is 79% Gewurztraminer and 29% Riesling.  It has a great balance of dry and very floral flavors from the Gewurzt blended with sweetness and acidity of the Riesling.  This wine spends 5 months in stainless steel and has a great aroma and flavor.  This wine will pair with anything Asian, Thai, or spicy dishes south of the border.  Serve chilled.  It is a great sipper as well.  Remember this for Thanksgiving. Available in Michigan stores.

Next for a chicken pairing is Rosé Cider from Virtue Cider located in Fennville, Michigan.  Rosé is still rocking the sales charts.  Everyone is making a rose wine.  Only a few people are making a rosé cider.  Virtue uses local apples of Jonathons, Golden Russet, McIntosh, Winesap, Ida Red, and Northern Spy in their blend for the rosé cider.  Virtue adds a botanical blend to achieve the aromas of apple, grapefruit peel, and strawberries.  This blend includes citrus oil, sage, and hibiscus among other items.  This cider finishes nice and clean and can be paired with goat cheese or veggies from the garden, and a light chicken salad. Available in Michigan stores. If a Rosé Cider sounds appealing Crispin and Angry Orchard both offer a Rosé Cider, and  both are available in all Family Fare stores.

The next pairing is a tasty beer, M43 from Old Nation.  This beer came out of nowhere and is a star.  For quite some time this product had spotty availability due to capacity issues at Old Nation.  They simply could not keep up with demand.  The New England style of IPA with a higher malt bill and an unfiltered and juicy mouthfeel makes this an IPA that is easy on the palate.  This was so popular you have big name breweries mimicking the style of beer.  You get pineapple, mango, and grapefruit in the flavor of this beer.  The ABV is 6.% with 65 IBUs.  A chicken salad with fruit will do this pairing well. Available in Michigan stores.

Sparkling waters that are spiked have taken the scene by storm.  These new sparkling water items are leading the pack as growth items for 2018.  One of the new sparkling water items is called Truly.  For us, they were the first sparkling water with alcohol that we offered in our stores.  It was received extremely well.  Truly has all the great information you look for on a label boldly positioned on the front of the label.  The package that is selling really well for Truly is the variety pack, 3 cans of 4 flavors.  The flavors included are Wild Berry, Blueberry Acai, Raspberry Lime, and Pomegranate.  The nutritionals on this that is easily read on the label are as follows, 5% ABV, 100 calories, 1g sugar, and gluten free.  This item is very versatile with food or just sipping and is a very nice light pairing with chicken on the grill. Available in all Family Fare stores.

Brewery Vivant is another amazing local brewery located in Grand Rapids, MI.  Their new beer for us is the Hopfield IPA.  This beer features Michigan hops on Vivant’s mainstay style of farmhouse beer.  This beer is unfiltered and cloudy as well.  It is a local brewery using local ingredients with the hops.  The nose on this beer is floral and fruity.  The palate is juicy and rustic in the perfect Vivant style.  Food parings would be pizza, spicy seafood, chicken on the grill, or Gouda cheese.  Brewery Vivant is proud to bring this beer to you. Available in Michigan stores.

Greg Vanoverloop Beer Wine Spirits Category Manager

Greg VanOverloop, Beer & Wine Specialist
  • Started in the Grocery business bagging at D&W in 1975.  Worked at D&W for 30 years in various departments.
  • Worked at SpartanNash for 11 years.  Currently the Category Manager for Wine/Beer/Spirits for SpartanNash East.
  • Have been a category manager since 1990 and a category manager of beer  since 1997.  CM of wine and spirits since 2007.
  • Have travelled extensively which provided the opportunity to taste many foods and beverages from Hong Kong to Caribbean, from California to Maine.
  • Love to cook, grill, and bake, snow ski, sail, and read books.    Best baked item – a bourbon pecan pie with rum crust.  Best grilled item – salmon with blueberry onion wine sauce and goat cheese.  Best cooked item – Squash Apple soup with bourbon.  Best ski slope – Go Devil at Keystone.  Best book – Wonder.
  • 1 wife, 3 children, 7.3 grandchildren.