When Tom and Susan Higgins set out to create Heart & Hands Wine Company, pinot noir was to be the focus — and it is. Tom is making some of the best pinot on the East Coast. At the same time, the riesling program has grown beyond what the couple expected (I tasted more than a half dozen bottlings on a recent visit) and offers outstanding quality as well.

The fruit used to make Heart & Hands Wine Company 2013 Patrician Verona Vineyard Riesling ($28) was grown on the west side of Cayuga Lake on a site that consistently produces ripe, fruit-forward rieslings. That’s on full display here.

The nose is effusive and showy, with kiwi and yellow apple aromas with subtle hints of tropical fruit, citrus blossom, and green tea.

Focused and a bit more floral, the palate is driven by apple blossom and jasmine flavors that are framed by crisp green apple juiciness. Made in a pure, intricate style, it tastes dry thanks to well-integrated acidity and a bit of bitter citrus pith on the finish that stretches the finish nicely. This is a wine that makes you want to eat.

Producer: Heart & Hands Wine Company
AVA: Finger Lakes
Harvest Date: October 17, 2013
Harvest Yield: 4 tons/acre
ABV: 12.7%
RS: 7 g/l
TA: 6.9 g/L
pH: 3.04
Bottled: June 11, 2014
Production: 76 cases
Price: $28

 (4 out of 5, Outstanding and Delicious, Highly Recommended)