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McCall Wines 2010 “Ben’s Blend”

McCall Wines has earned a reputation as the producer of Long Island’s finest pinot noir, but its merlot and merlot-based blend McCall Wines 2010 “Ben’s Blend” ($48) are just as deserving of attention. T...

Hillrock Estate Distillery owner Jeff Baker

Terroir in Whiskey? Inside the Quest for Individuality at the Hudson Valley’s Hillrock Estate Distillery

It wasn’t yet midnight, but it was long past sunset in the peat marsh. Two men who looked like deep-sea divers were prepared to use their wetsuits for a new purpose: they would be diving for peat. The decayed vegetation is an...


Brooklyn Brewery Brooklyn Blast American Imperial/Double IPA

I first tried “Brooklyn Blast” ale at the Brooklyn Brewery tasting room in Williamsburg some years ago. I immediately fell in love. At the time, the beer was only available on draft and was not something often found outside...


Top 10 Tastes from TasteCamp 2014: Hudson Valley

With TasteCamp 2014 in my rearview mirror, I’ve spent some time considering event — what we tasted, who we talked to and what they said — and while I’m not typically the biggest fan of “Top 10̸...


The Spirits of Volunteerism

Early last month a story broke in California about a small winery that had been subject to hefty fines levied by state labor authorities for the use of willing volunteers, and then fined again during their process to try and m...


Bloomer Creek Vineyard 2011 Vin d’ete Cabernet Franc

  This isn’t a wine that everyone is going to appreciate. As some would say, this is a cab franc lover’s cab franc. You need to appreciate the earthiness of the grape — the herbal edges too. Bloomer Creek...


Dancing in September: How 2014 Went from Potential Disaster to Potential Cool-Climate Classic

To say that the 2014 vintage was in crisis mode before September is not an understatement. “I’d say it was like 2009, but it was probably in worse shape,” one winemaker who asked not to be identified told me. “Way, way ...


Hosmer Winery 2012 Single Wheel Riesling

You wouldn’t know it to look at the front label, but this wine is produced by winemaker Aaron Roisen at Hosmer Winery. It’s an interesting branding decision, which is another discussion for another day, but this is ...