Looking at his list, it’s hard to argue with it. He certainly includes all the "heavy hitters" in the region, including Bedell Cellars, Wolffer Estate, Paumanok Vineyards and Lenz Winery (who I’m writing about as I type this.)
He also lists the places I consider "touristy" spots…Pindar, Martha Clara Vineyards and Palmer Vineyards. Touristy, in my definition, just means that the overall wine quality isn’t the best, but the tasting rooms and other ammenities are very consumer friendly. Each does have at least one wine of note however.
Howard is obviously writing for a wide audience…New York Times subscribers. But, I would have liked to see him list at least one small producer that people might not know about. Where’s Waters Crest Winery? Where’s the mention of Lieb Family Cellars (which is attached to Premium Wine Group) and their Pinot Blanc? (Update: Turns out he mentioned Lieb in his column on Sunday). Maybe a mention of Sherwoodhouse Vineyards or Roanoke Vineyards’ merlot?
I would have had a slightly different list, that’s for sure. And, anyone of you who have asked for my list in the past can compare.
I also had to smile when I saw the title of his piece: A ‘Sideways’ Tour of Long Islands’ Tasting Room. Especially when I had a story published over a week ago titled "A Sideways Look at Laurel Lake Vineyards."
Is Howard reading my stuff? I doubt it, but in my own mind, I’m a legend already.
(By the way, the above picture was taken last night at Wolffer Estate after Nena and I attended a function in support of the Music Festival of the Hamptons. Wolffer’s winemaker and general manager, Roman Roth, is also a tenor…and he sang six Schubert pieces for us, accompanied by world-class pianist Katya Sonina.)