Posts Tagged“Review”

Roanoke Vineyards 2010 Cabernet Franc


Long Island merlot is often — and consistently — delicious. But when Long Island cabernet franc is done well — which is almost always the case at Roanoke Vineyards — it is much more distinctive and compelling. At it’s best, Long Island cabernet franc combines forward, ripe fruit with savory notes — often herbs but sometimes mushrooms or leaf tobacco — and restrained oak that frames rather than overwhelms the grape’s varietal character. Usually there is a freshness too, which makes it one of my go-to wines for the dinner table. Of the 2010 cabernet francs I’ve tasted, Roanoke Vineyards 2010 Cabernet France ($34) best exemplifies my personal local…

Macari Vineyards 2013 Rosé


Macari Vineyards 2013 Rosé ($17), a blend of 60% cabernet franc, 38% merlot, 2% pinot noir, doesn’t jump out of the glass at you. It’s more subtle on the nose than that, but if you pay attention, the melange of red cherry, straweberry and sweet herbs is quite elegant. Medium bodied with a serious bolt of acidity, the palate is fruit forward, but not overly fruity because of nice, savory herbal notes. There is an earthy component too that is somewhat reminiscent of raw button mushroom. All of that acidity sticks out just a bit, but overall this is a wine that…

Wolffer Estate 2013 “Summer in a Bottle” Rose


Even though it was just released in May — 1,530 cases worth — Wolffer Estate 2013 “Summer in a Bottle” Rose ($24) is sold out at the winery.  Yes, you read that correctly. More than 1,500 cases gone in about two months. You still may find it at shops or restaurants, but you can’t get it at the winery anymore. That’s pretty incredible and a problem that many wineries would love to have. Of course it’s not really a problem for Wolffer Estate. Winemaker Roman Roth makes five different roses — three still, one sparkling and one dessert wine — so there…

Hector Wine Company 2012 Syrah


It’s easy to get caught up in all of the delicious white wines — not just riesling, mind you — coming out of the Finger Lakes and assume that the red wines just aren’t very good. Several folks charged with selling Finger Lakes wines of all styles lament this fact quite openly when you speak with them or interact with them on the interwebs. It’s a common misconception, but like many is based at least in part on facts. You can throw “cool-climate” around all you want — and many do — but if you’re working with the wrong varieties…

Raphael 2013 “First Label” Sauvignon Blanc


Not that long ago, Raphael produced what I considered the benchmark sauvignon blanc on the North Fork of Long Island. It was fruit-forward but not too ripe or fruity. It was minerally but not austere and flavorless. Then, with some  staffing changes in the cellar came a fall off. The wine was still solid, but rarely more. The 2013 vintage was winemaker Anthony Nappa’s first at the helm and after tasting Raphael 2013 “First Label” Sauvignon Blanc ($28) Raphael could be on its way to again becoming a quality leader in the region. Sourced from the estate’s oldest sauvignon blanc vines, this intensely aromatic white shows…

Fulkerson Winery 2013 “William Vigne” Zweigelt


Fulkerson Winery’s 2013 William Vigne Zweigelt ($18) is the rare New York zweigelt — and it’s a good summer BBQ red for a couple of reasons. First, its youthful and fruit-forward. I don’t need or even want a lot of complexity in a wine I’m having with a charred burger with assorted toppings. Aromas and flavors of black cherry and black currant flavors are accented by subtle cinnamon spice and a faint-but-distinct note of citronella. I haven’t tested it’s effectiveness as a bug repellent, however. Second, it’s low tannin, which means it can take a light chill without becoming puckery and unpleasant.…

Keuka Spring Vineyards 2013 Wiltberger Vineyard Field Blend Dry Rose


Last year, Keuka Spring Vineyards winemaker August Deimel crafted one of the NYCR tasting panel’s top two 2012 roses, so when he sent  the 2013, it didn’t take me long to get it in the tasting queue. Keuka Spring Vineyards 2013 Wiltberger Vineyard Field Blend Dry Rose ($17) is completely different from that stellar 2012.  It’s a field blend — a blend of lemberger, cabernet franc, merlot — and smells of trawberries and cream with hints of peppery spice and spring flowers. The dry, medium-bodied palate is richer than the 2012, with watermelon and red cherry flavors backed by more of that…

Wolffer Estate Vineyard 2013 Rose


There is little doubt that Wolffer Estate Vineyard‘s rose is the unofficial wine of the Hamptons — or at least the Memorial Day-to-Labor Day Hamptons season. You’ll find it all over — on restaurant lists, at events, by the pool, at the beach and out on boats. It’s seemingly everywhere. And winemaker Roman Roth makes a lot of it — more than 17,000 cases this year, which dwarfs the total production of most Long Island wineries. Wolffer Estate Vineyard 2013 Rose ($17*) is made with 58% merlot, 24% chardonnay, 11% cabernet franc 6% pinot noir and 1% cabernet sauvignon and shows…

Heron Hill Winery 2012 “Morris Vineyard” Reserve Pinot Blanc


Heron Hill Winery 2012 “Morris Vineyard” Reserve Pinot Blanc ($18*) offers a delicate nose of Bartlett pear, mango drizzled with lime juice and green melon. Medium bodied and showing a bit of mid-palate sweetness, the palate is dominated  by green apple and tropical fruits. That residual sugar brings nice weight and a nice nudge of acidity drives a juicy finish that lingers with subtle sweetness and distant lemon verbena herbal note. Producer: Heron Hill Winery AVA: Finger Lakes Harvest Date(s): September 11, 2012Brix: 21.5 ABV: 12.5% RS: 1.48% TA: 6.1 g/l pH: 3.26 Production:  235 cases Release Date: October 4, 2013 Price: $18* (3 out of 5, Very good/Recommended)

Kelby James Russell 2013 Dry Rosé


  The label certainly tells you who made this wine. Red Newt winemaker Kelby Russell put his name right on the label of Kelby James Russell 2013 Dry Rosé ($16), which was made at Red Newt from 100% cabernet franc grapes. White cherries and red raspberries dominate the nose with a hint of watermelon and notes of black pepper, cabernet franc dusty earthiness and a squirt of lime. Fresh and balanced, the medium-bodied palate is driven by red berry fruits with another sprinkling of pepper and woodsy, savory spice. A bit of red apple peeks through on the medium-short finish,…