Maryland #Tastemaker: Lisa Hinton | Old Westminster Winery

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“Tastemaker” is a term typically used to describe a person — either a sommelier or writer in the wine world — who decides what is good, cool or otherwise interesting. With our new #NYTastemaker profiles, I’ve decided to usurp the term to mean someone who actually makes the wines, ciders, spirits, etc. that we love. A “tastemaker” should make something, after all. Chardonnay. Believe it or not, that’s the grape (and wine) that first sparked my interest in Old Westminster Winery. I was at a walk-around tasting at Camden Yards in Baltimore, MD as part of Drink Local Wine 2013 when a…

Weekly New York Wine News — April 11, 2016

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Photo credit: Nancy Irelan, Red Tail Ridge NEWS Wines & Vines – 4/4/2016 Interview tells more about Samuel Filler, incoming Director of the New York Wine and Grape Foundation. Democrat & Chronicle – 4/6/2016 Holly Howell is ‘researching’ wining wines from the Finger Lakes International Competition and takes a shine to Thirsty Owl’s Diamond. Al Jazeera America – 4/7/2016 Hazlitt Vineyards featured in this report about the ongoing dispute over gas storage facilities on Seneca Lake. Examiner.com – 4/9/2016 Bill Dowd gives kudos to Adirondack Winery’s Meritage blend which went Platinum at the Critics Challenge. EVENTS Honoring the Hands: A…

From the Archives: Finger Lakes Growers Begin to Check for Damage to Vines Following Brutal Cold Snap

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Editor’s Note: On Thursdays — call them Throwback Thursday if you’d like — we’ll pull a story from the more than a decade of NYCR stories and republish it. This week’s jolt of frigid temperatures across New York — particularly in upstate New York — has those of us who care about and follow the wine and cider industries here worried about what damage was done. So, I thought posting this piece from January 2014 seeme appropriate.  On Saturday, Steve Shaw of Shaw Vineyard spent about an hour carefully cutting buds from canes he pulled from his vineyard. It had been several days…

New York #Tastemaker: Kelly Urbanik Koch | Macari Vineyards

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Photo credit: David Benthal for NorthForker “Tastemaker” is a term typically used to describe a person — either a sommelier or writer in the wine world — who decides what is good, cool or otherwise interesting. With our new #NYTastemaker profiles, I’ve decided to usurp the term to mean someone who actually makes the wines, ciders, spirits, etc. that we love. A “tastemaker” should make something, after all. As August Deimel mentioned last week, there is precious little diversity in New York’s wine cellars. Head winemakers across the state tend to be white and they tend to men. I won’t pretend to know…

Weekly New York Wine News — April 4, 2016

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Co-owner and winemaker Paul Brock pruning vines in the estate vineyard at Silver Thread Vineyard. NEWS Edible East End – 3/22/2016 Long Island vintners line up their 2013 reds for market, and believe that the vintage will be  a long-lived one. Albany Times Union – 3/28/2016 Capoccia Vineyards & Winery of Niskayuna, opens a wine lounge in downtown Schenectady to showcase its products as well as ciders from around New York state. North Forker – 3/29/2016 NYCR Executive Editor Lenn Thompson pens a piece for the Long Island Wine Press in which he takes another look at Long Island Chardonnay.…

Uncork the Forks: 6 reasons for North Forkers to visit the Finger Lakes

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I’m working on several stories after my recent trip to the Finger Lakes — but in the meantime, I wanted to share my latest column for the Suffolk Times, which can be found online on northforker.com Over the past several years, my family has fallen head-over-heels in love with the Finger Lakes region of central New York. It’s a stunningly beautiful part of the country that offers spectacular sunrises and sunsets, fishing, boating, wine tasting, great food and farmer’s markets, a relaxed pace and plenty of relaxation. In some ways, it’s a lot like the North Fork — except it’s…

Lieb Cellars 2014 Bridge Lane Chardonnay

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It’s easy to forget sometimes, but not every wine we drink needs to be esoteric or complicated. Wine needn’t always be something you spend time dissecting or pondering. Some might argue that wine is never that. At the end of the day, wine need only be delicious and satisfying. Lieb Cellars 2014 Bridge Lane Chardonnay ($16) is both of those things. Made entirely in stainless steel, it’s not complex or layered, but it offers bright, fresh lemon-lime fruitiness, juicy acidity and a subtle saline edge on the finish. This is the kind of wine that you want to have around as the…

New York #Tastemaker: August Deimel | Keuka Spring Vineyards

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“Tastemaker” is a term typically used to describe a person — either a sommelier or writer in the wine world — who decides what is good, cool or otherwise interesting. With our new #NYTastemaker profiles, I’ve decided to usurp the term to mean someone who actually makes the wines, ciders, spirits, etc. that we love. A “tastemaker” should make something, after all. Where should I  start with August Deimel, winemaker at Keuka Spring Vineyards? He’s a fellow Pittsburgh native and we’ve had more than a few exchanges about our beloved Pittsburgh Steelers over the years — but we should keep this to…

Long Island Wine Press: 5 Truths About Long Island Chardonnay

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You may have noticed a lot of chardonnay-related activity here and on the site’s Facebook page of late. That was because of this story, which is in the spring issue of Long Island Wine Press. Check out the excerpt and then click the link below to read the full story. For the last five years of the decade I’ve spent writing about wine, I’ve largely ignored most Long Island chardonnay. Rarely tasted it, let alone drank it. Particularly if it was raised in an oak barrel. Sure, some unoaked Long island chardonnay made it into my glass — it’s bound…

Coffee Pot Cellars 2013 Chardonnay

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Regardless of grape variety, I don’t look for or particularly enjoy a heavy oak footprint — flavors of raw wood, vanilla, etc. That’s particularly true of chardonnay. Oaky chardonnay tends to not play well with the foods I like to eat. The middle ground between buttery oak bombs and steely unoakaed chardonnay can be hard to navigate. It’s sometimes hard to tell, just by looking at a label, just how oaky or not a chardonnay will be. I tend to prefer wines that reside in that middle groud — wines made using older, neutral oak barrels that allow for air…