Atwater08dryBy Lenn Thompson, Editor-in-Chief

Atwater Estate Vineyards, located on the eastern shores of Seneca Lake is the winery responsible for introducing me to Finger Lakes wines. I've written the story before, so here it is in a nutshell:

Atwater's winemaker, Vinny Aliperti used to work at Wolffer Estate. Roanoke Vineyards owner, Richie Pisacano worked there at the same time (and still works at Wolffer). When Richie opened his Roanoke tasting room, he only had a single wine of his own, so he tasted and sold some of Vinny's Atwater wine in the tasting room. The riesling, vidal blanc and estate white all piqued my interest.

Since then, many Atwater wines have crossed my palate and this Atwater Estate 2008 Dry Riesling ($16) stood out in a recent tasting.

Pale lemon yellow in the glass, the nose is classic Finger Lakes — lime leads with peach, Thai basil coming next and a subtle honeyed marzipan note even further beneath. 

The medium-light palate is a bit more peachy, with the lime zest taking a step back. The sweetness is subtle, but softens the fresh, but not overwhelming acidity. The finish is crisp and clean with lime and grapefruit that lingers. There is a delicate, haunting honey note in the background throughout that I really enjoy.

Producer: Atwater Estate Vineyards
AVA: Finger Lakes
ABV: 12%

RS: 1.2%

Cases Produced: 497
Closure: Natural
Price: $16

Rating:   35
(3.5 out of 5 | Very good-to-Delicious) 

(Ratings Guide)