Lucas_09cayuga By Lenn Thompson, Executive Editor

I don't write a lot of reviews of wines made with Cayuga White, a hybrid grape developed at Cornell University's Agriculture Experiment Station. Most of them just don't impress me. Too often they get that foxy character at high brix.

But, when harvested a bit earlier, it can make some fruity, well-balanced wines that seem perfectly suited to summer sipping — or even as stand in for riesling at the dinner table with spicy ethnic foods.

One such example is Lucas Vineyards 2009 Cayuga White ($9). Just cut pear and apple as well as slightly candied apple aromas are just a bit floral too… think apple blossom.

Straight-forward and satisfying, the palate brings more of that fresh-meets-candied apple and pear. It's off dry (2.75% RS) but with more than enough acidity to bring balance and keep things lively.

If you're looking for complexity, look elsewhere, but for $9, you get a lot of freshness and fruit-forward deliciousness.     

Producer: Lucas Vineyards
AVA: Finger Lakes
ABV: 11%
Residual Sugar: 2.75%
Price: $9*
Rating: 83

(*Ratings Guide)