Posts Written OnFebruary 2013

Local Kickstarter: Help Southold Farm + Cellar Bring Weird Grapes to the North Fork


Chardonnay. Merlot. Chardonnay. Merlot. Chardonnay. Merlot. As good as Long Island wine can be — yes, including merlot and chardonnay — it can sometimes feel like a lot of the same. Especially because chardonnay and merlot aren’t what anyone would call trendy or sexy grapes right now. There is cabernet franc here too of course, and sauvignon blanc has grown in popularity, which is great. There are also one-winery (or two) wonders like pinot blanc, chenin blanc and tocai too. Personally, varietal malbec is a category that I’m excited about as. Regan and Carey Meador, the couple behind Southold Farm…

Book Review: An Ideal Wine, by David Darlington


It’s easy to choose sides in wine. We get emotional about the process. That’s how we got saddled with such a silly word like “natural” describing a product that isn’t hardly natural. And before you think I’m pro-industrial wine — another silly construction — I’ll just say that I prefer to leave the fruit compote where it belongs. At Bob Evans. So here’s a wine book review that’s somewhat overdue, given that the book was released in 2011. But unlike most books I read, I didn’t read David Darlington’s An Ideal Wine cover-to-cover without picking up other books. This is…

What We Drank (February 26, 2013)


  “What We Drank” makes its triumphant comeback this week with a typically diverse set of libations from many corners of the adult beverage world. Evan even found a chardonnay that he likes — quite a bit, in fact. Lenn Thompson: Keuka Spring Vineyards 2006 Lemberger, New York We’ve been in the new house for about a week now. I’m not going to lie and say that moving — particularly with two young kids — isn’t stressful and exhausting. It is. But it did result in at least one un-expected pleasure: uncovering a portion of my wine cellar that had…

Casa Larga Vineyards NV Pinot Noir


When I first smelled this pinot, with its aromas of cherry candy and cough syrup and peppery, almost-Moroccan spice I thought there might be some non-pinot in there. Maybe even a hybrid like De Chaunac or Noiret. But according to former Casa Larga winemaker Mark Patterson “It was 100% pinot noir from the Turk Hill Road Vineyard. This site always produces a bit of a peppery/spicy character that some people believe is from something else, but it’s not. No one ever believes me when I tell them, but I made the wine, and made the blend, so I know what…

Starting Anew at the New York Cork Report

Photo courtesy of Heart & Hands Wine Company

Things have been a bit quiet here on the site. I know it. The whole team knows it, actually. It’d be easy to blame it on the babies (four in the the past 15 months) that have joined various staff members’ families. Or maybe on my recent move to a new NYCR world headquarters. Moving stinks. Moving with two young children is exponentially worse. But reasons or excuses don’t matter at this point. Today is the first day of the rest of this website’s life. The entire team is committed ready to dive back into the site with gusto. We’re bringing back…

Empire State Cellars Wine Club: March 2013 Selections


The March shipment of the Empire State Cellars Wine Club will be shipping in a week or so — meaning that it’s time to announce my selections. If you’re not familiar with the club, you can learn more here. “Hello New York” Wines Sheldrake Point 2011 Dry Riesling: Lithe and lively, this was a favorite when I tasted with winemaker Dave Breeden last summer. Apple and apple blossom flavors are accented by a squirt of lime and a snappy finish. Roasted pork loin wants this wine. So do you. Macari Vineyards 2008 Estate Merlot: With aromas of red cherry, cured meat, sweet herbs and…

A Beer-Lovers Fantasy: A Visit to Hoptron Brewtique


Last week, I visited Hoptron Brewtique — which opened last December on West Main St in Patchogue — for the first time. Some fellow beer enthusiasts and I dropped in to see what all the hype was about. Conclusion: this isn’t just another local bar promoting local craft beer. This place is soaked in it. Walking in, I immediately got the sense that I was in the right place. A small mill for crushing grain was parked in the corner, adjacent to a wall of homebrew supplies.  Hoptron carries all the necessities to brew one kick-ass ale — everything from…

Roman Roth Named Partner at Wolffer Estate Vineyard. Grapes of Roth Brought In-House There.


Congratulations to veteran Long Island winemaker Roman Roth who today was named a partner at Wolffer Estate Vineyard by new owners Joey and Marc Wolffer. In addition, Roth will move his private label “Grapes of Roth” under the Wolffer Estate umbrella. Sagaponack, NY (February 11, 2013) –  Roman Roth, the Winemaker at Wölffer Estate Vineyard for 21 years, has been named a partner by new co-owners Joey Wölffer and Marc Wölffer. “It is great timing to name Roman a partner just after his 20th anniversary and during the 25th anniversary of the estate.  Roman’s dedication and incredible passion has helped build the…

New Cornell Grapes Named and Released. NYCR Reader Submission Chosen.

The newly named grape Aromella

The Lilac Ballroom of the Riverside Convention Center in Rochester, NY filled quickly earlier this week for a late morning session of the Viticulture 2013 Conference, where the commercial names for two new wine grapes released from the Cornell breeding program were to be announced. White wine grape NY76.0844.24 will now officially be called “Aromella“, and the red grape NY95.0301.01 will be recognized as “Arandell“. Over 1100 suggestions from around the globe had poured in after the request for assistance was publicized last year, first here in the Cork Report, and then as picked up by other news outlets. Horticulture Professor Bruce Reisch…

Local Kickstarter Campaign: Condzella Hops Unites Long Island Farmers and Local Breweries


Local hop farmer John Condzella has created a Kickstarter Campaign with the hopes buying a used hop-harvesting machine from Germany that will be used not only to harvest his farm’s hops, but any hop farmer’s crop on Long Island. Check out the campaign and donate if you’re so inclined. Editor’s Note: We want to support Kickstarter campaigns like this whenever we can. If you hear about a local beverage-related campaign, please let us know.