klv-2014-leon-millot-nouveau

Given the popularity of Beaujolais Nouveau every fall, it’s long surprised me how few New York wineries (or American wineries for that matter) have embraced the concept. I mean, most Beaujolais Nouveau is terrible. I’m sure New York wineries can do better. Enter Keuka Lake Vineyards 2014 Leon Millot Nouveau ($18). Keuka Lake Vineyards has a bit of a cult following for it’s non-nouveau Leon Millot — an inky dark, chewy red unlike many from the Finger Lakes. On the other hand, this nouveau is soft and fruity, which red cherry note and just a little little cassis. There is a…

Photo courtesy of Shinn Estate Vineyards

New York Wine News Poughkeepsie Journal – 1/13/2015 Food, drink events worth a trip – Douglass Miller names Hudson Valley among his destination recommendations. WXXI – 1/14/2015 Rieslings From The Finger Lakes Region Gaining National Attention – “Need to Know” host Hélène Biandudi Hofer is joined by David Mansfield, Owner and President of Three Brothers Wineries and Estates and Vinny Aliperti, Owner and Winemaker for Billsboro Winery. NorthForker – 1/14/2015 Dean Babiar is new winemaker at Jamesport Vineyards – the 30-year-old winemaker said it was a taste of Jamesport Vineyards merlot and cabernet franc, given to him by his brother several years ago,…

magnus-ridge

A few miles north of the village of Watkins Glen on the western shore of Seneca Lake is a large and striking structure  faces the lake from the side of a hill that is bisected by Route 14.  Although it mostly resembles a French chateau in design, the building is a fusion of Old World architectural styles that give it an imposing, yet inviting aura.  Its name, Magnus Ridge Winery, pays homage to its size as well as its location. The winery and the nearby vineyards represent the realization of a life-long dream for Sandy and Matt Downey who built…

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NEWS Cornell Viticulture and Enology – 12/31/2015 USDA Renews Funding for Northern Grapes Project led by Dr. Tim Martinson at Cornell with a grant of $2.6 Million to continue research and education activities that have reached an aggregate audience of several thousand people across 12 states. DNAinfo.com – 1/6/2015 A Winery grows in Brooklyn. The Brooklyn Winery is planning to open a second location in the Crown Heights neighborhood late summer 2015. Star Gazette – 1/7/2015 Techs who do IT support for Finger Lakes wineries, open a store “Odessa Wine and Spirits” selling only New York wines. The Chronicle-Express – 1/9/2015 Rochester Institute of…

wolffer-2010-noblesse

Wolffer Estate is one of the better-known and recognized brands in Long Island wine. Their standard dry rose is nearly ubiquitous in the warmer months (not to mention their barrel-aged rose and the new “Summer in a Bottle” bottling). Winemaker Roman Roth is also making some of the best merlot-based blends and cabernet franc on the island. What doesn’t get nearly enough attention is the sparkling wine program at Wolffer — including Wolffer Estate 2010 Noblesse Oblige Extra Brut Rose Sparkling ($40). Made from pinot noir and chardonnay, it offers aromas of fresh apple and apple skin with hints of red berries.…

keegan-ales-mothers-milk

Keegan Ales began brewing in an abandoned brewery in Kingston, NY around 2003. Since then, their beer lineup (especially the Mother’s Milk) has been a major staple in the Hudson Valley and New York beer scene. They now contract brew some of their beer in Stratford, CT. I like pouring this milk stout from the bottle with some vigor, which creates a nice frothy head and gets all the Oedipus complex out. The stout is mostly black, with a rich brown layer of foam. The nose is more grassy and dusty at first but leads to some sweeter aromas like chocolate…

knapp-2013-dry-riesling

With aromas of lemon drop, peach flesh and pit and a subtle floral quality, Knapp 2013 Dry Riesling ($16) is fruity and forward without being too candied. Thought sweeter than many would expect from a wine labeled “Dry” there is a nice balance between the residual sugar — which brings a bit of mid-palate fullness — and citrusy, juicy acidity that lingers with a distinct lime finish. Peach flavors are ripe and plush with citrus at the edges and a bit of apple skin. This was the surprise of a recent tasting. Producer: Knapp Wines AVA: Finger Lakes ABV: 12% Production: 302 cases…

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In June, the head job was his. By the end of August, he might have been wondering why nature had served him such a cruel dish for his first solo vintage. But at Anthony Road Wine Company on Seneca Lake, Peter Becraft knew very well to stay patient. He could wait to see what September would bring. He had been waiting years for the chance at a head winemaking job, and he is not the type to stew. That’s probably framing the situation unfairly. Anthony Road has become one of the most significant names in the New York wine industry,…

anthony-nappa-2013-chardonnay

Anthony Nappa Wines 2013 “Sciardonne” Chardonnay ($20) straddles the line between typical no-oak chardonnay and barrel fermented styles. Though it doesn’t see a splinter of oak, it’s still full-bodied and concentrated with fruity aromas of mandarin orange and peach backed by notes of pineapple, dried flowers and a bit of butter. Full-bodied and mouth-filling, the palate shows excellent balance with enough acid to keep it from tasting heavy or tiring and a nice little saline note on the end of a medium-long finish. Producer: Anthony Nappa Wines AVA: North Fork of Long Island Harvest Date(s): October 5, 2013 Vineyard Source: McCullough Vineyards…

Photo courtesy of Macari Vineyards

I’ll Drink to That Podcast – 12/23/2014 Levi Dalton interviews Christopher Tracy – winemaker and a partner at the Channing Daughters winery, on New York’s Long Island. Plus Erin Scala takes a look at the history of wine production in New York state. New York Times – 12/26/2014 The owners of Finger Lakes wine cellars are squaring off against business interests to store liquefied petroleum gas in their neighborhoods. New York Winemakers Fight Gas Storage Plan Near Seneca Lake. Syracuse.com – 12/29/2014 Gas storage plan under Seneca Lake draws letters to the editor and a heated commentary. WXXI News – 12/29/2014 New York…