Posts Tagged“merlot”

Long Island Merlot Alliance Sponsoring an Intern

The Long Island Merlot Alliance has sponsored a summer intern to do local Merlot research during the 2007 vintage. The intern, Christopher Grassotti, is a student in the Masters degree program in viticulture and enology at Ecole Nationale Supérieur Agronomique in Montpellier, France. In his work for LIMA, he will be working closely with LIMA members, Viticultural Research Program Leader Alice Wise, and others at Cornell University. He will focus on defining the dominant and strongly identifiable aroma/ profile of Long Island merlot and identifying the differences found in other quality wine regions. This will allow specific analysis, in the…

WTN: Castello di Borghese 2001 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon (North Fork of Long Island)

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On the North Fork, there is an un-official red wine grape pecking order. Okay, maybe it isn’t even un-official. At the top is the almighty merlot grape, lauded by many observers as the king of Long Island grapes. And, it has earned such a reputation with good reason. It seems ideally suited to the regions climate and soil conditions–and consistently leads to many of the region’s best wines. Next in line is cabernet franc, genetic parent to cabernet sauvignon and known mostly for its popularity in the Loire region of France and as a blending grape in Bordeaux. It ripens…

WTN: Medolla Vineyards 2002 Merlot (North Fork)

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The Italian and Italian-American influence on Long Island wine country is strong. Among the thirty-plus East End producers there are ones named Pellegrini, Pugliese, Castello di Borghese and Diliberto – and others that are owned by people of Italian heritage, many of whom grew up making wine with their families. Medolla Vineyards, owned by John and Denise Medolla, has recently joined the fray with its first release, this 2002 Merlot. Medolla Vineyards operates under a tenant winery license at Lenz Winery. Basically, Lenz Winery serves as a host winery and Medolla uses the facilities when Lenz isn’t using them. Lenz…

WBW #32: Regular vs. Reserve

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Today is the second Wednesday of the month, and lately that means it’s Wine Blogging Wednesday. This month’s edition–the events 32nd–is hosted by The Wine Cask Blog, which has asked participants to compare two wines from the same winery and same vintage, but one a ‘regular’ bottling and the other a ‘reserve.’ Definitely a fun concept and one I looked forward to. Rather than just do one comparison, I decided to do two pairs–one white, one red, one from the Finger Lakes, one from Long Island. Starting with the whites, I tasted and compared two 2005 chardonnays from Treleaven Wines…

“MERLOT” License Plate Illegal in Utah

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File this one under "I sure am glad that I don’t live in a theocratic state." The license plate that you see mocked up at right was just deemed illegal in the state of Utah–after it had been issued and used for a decade. Turns out that using "Merlot" on a plate is illegal in the most oppressive of states because it is an intoxicant. I guess the people running things in Utah have a different view of freedom of speech–and clearly don’t have anything more important to focus on. I just went to the NY DMV site to see…

New North Fork Winery: Medolla Vineyards

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I got an email this morning from John Medolla, who along with his wife  Denise, just released their first merlot under the new Medolla Vineyards label–adding yet another producer to the North Fork wine scene. I hope Lisa Granik is paying attention. Medolla’s first release, a 2002 Merlot ($23) was produced at the Lenz Winery with Eric Fry (of Lenz) serving as consulting winemaker. Medolla Vineyards is one of the smallest in the region with an initial annual production of 500 cases. They hand harvest grapes from local vineyards. Both John and Denise work in the aviation industry, but their…

WTN: Pellegrini Vineyards 2001 Merlot (North Fork)

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With the recent 2006 vintage, Pellegrini Vineyards in Cutchogue celebrated its 15th year. Australian-born winemaker Russell Hearn is known for making flavorful wines that tend to be good values in a local industry that is too often plagued by over-priced, under-delivering wines. True to his Australian pedigree, Hearn applies some of Long Island’s most cutting-edge techniques, but he doesn’t try to make Aussie-style wines — thankfully. North Fork grapes just don’t get ripe enough for those big, jammy, fruit bomb styles. Pellegrini Vineyards also makes enough wine every year that they don’t need to rush their wines to the store…

WTN: Bedell Cellars 2003 Merlot (North Fork)

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Red wines from the 2003 vintage — even those made with the region’s signature variety, merlot — have proved inconsistent in my tastings. Some wines, from some vineyards are delicious — elegant and classic Long Island. Others tend to be light on flavor and even a little ‘green’ in their under-ripeness. Some wineries didn’t even bother making first label or reserve wines in 2003, declassifying the vintage. So what caused this inconsistent vintage? Poorly timed rain and October frosts — two of them actually. Rain, obviously, can dilute flavors and frost kills the canopy. Without the engine to drive the…

WTN: Shinn Estate Vineyards 2004 Estate Merlot

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Shinn Estate Vineyards, still a relative newcomer to the Long Island wine scene, gets a ton of press for its "green" vineyard practices and its owners’ pedigree as Manhattan restaurateurs. I’ve written about them several times here on LENNDEVOURS and elsewhere. And yes, it’s true that David Page and Barbara Shinn employ several progressive sustainable and near-organic farming techniques in their North Fork vineyard. Their Greenwich Village restaurant, Home, is also a successful exhibition of local, seasonal food and wine. But it’s important not to forget about the fermented grape juice they bottle and stop with a cork. Their wines…

Take THAT California?

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"Yes, California does produce some good merlot, though I could make a case that better merlot is coming from Long Island than from California, albeit in very small amounts." So says New York Times wine writer and wine blogger Eric Asimov in this week’s column "Panned on Screen, Merlot Shrugs and Moves On" Of course, the rest of the column goes on to sing the praises of Washington State as America’s best source for merlot. I’m not as familiar with Washington merlots as I am Long Island ones (obviously) so I’m not going to comment on that. But, that doesn’t…