Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Finger Lakes Weekend Wino Wine Awards - Reds

Well, It's that time of the year when I reveal my favorite Finger Lakes wines of the past year. After visiting 81 Finger Lakes wineries (No, I did not meet my goal of visiting them all and I do apologize to those that I missed) and sampling over 600 Finger Lakes wines (hey, somebody's got to do it), I will now reveal (do a drum roll with your tongue) the FINGER LAKES WEEKEND WINO WINE AWARDS (raise the curtain, cue the band featuring Paul Schaffer (he's in all the tv special bands), cue the dancing wine bottles for the lavish opening number, and introduce the freakishly angular-faced Conan O' Brien (our emcee for these distinguished awards).

Conan: Ladies and Gentlemen, we are gathered here tonight to celebrate the finest wines of the Finger Lakes, as judged by some goofball who has an obsession with Finger Lakes wine. These wines have been selected as excellent, by the criteria of being extremely well-balanced, varietally correct, with complex aroma and flavor profiles, with an emphasis on value, and finally, they're just plain yummy! OK, How many Finger Lakes wine bloggers does it take to screw in a light bulb? Three - One for red bulbs, one for white bulbs, and one for blush bulbs! (Low murmur as audience grimaces) Hey, for what they are paying me for this, you're lucky to get any jokes at all out of me! And now, our first category is for Best Reds (These are in no particular order & these were all available at some point in 2007, but may be sold out now):

* Silver Springs Winery
> 2002 Cabernet Franc (with 10% Cab Sauv), $18.95, lovely cherry aroma, abundant cherry on the palate with a subtle smoky pepper finish, 18 months in French oak
> 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon, $21.95, nice plum and cherry with hints of smoky anise, heavy tannins that are softening beautifully, will age very well, can't wait to taste this one in a few years.
> 2003 Bold Merlot, $27, 60% Finger Lakes fruit & 40% Long Island fruit, aged in French oak for 2 1/4 years, heavenly soft plum with deep chocolate undertones. drink now or lay it down.

* Damiani Wine Cellars
> 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon, $21, beautiful deep ruby color, raspberry and currant flavors, very heavy tannins, let this one rest a while
> 2005 Meritage, $25, Cab Franc/ Cab Sauv/ Merlot, deep tones of berry and hints of coffee, heavy tannins, will age well, the potential is extremely evident.

* Shalestone Vineyards
> 2005 Merlot, $18, Rounded tannins, very smooth with hints of pepper in a finish that's longer than a Texas highway.
> 2006 Rich Rose', $12.99, 100% Pinot Noir, excellent value, smooth cherry, well balanced, easy drinking wine.

* Chateau Lafayette Reneau > 2003 Cabernet Sauvignon, $17.99, aromatic cherry nose, very silky tannins, amzingly expressive cherry fruit, excellent & delicious.

* Leidenfrost Vineyards > 2005 Pinot Noir, $20, Loads of cherry with a touch of cranberry, medium tannins, ready to drink now but will also age well.

* Hickory Hollow/ Highland Cellars > 2003 Pinot Noir, $12.49, excellent value, lots of smoky cherry with a hint of anise and a long finish with very soft tannins.

* Ravines Wine Cellars
> 2005 Pinot Noir, $21.95, soft medium tannins, ripe cherry with a complex earthiness

> 2005 Meritage, $23.95, 32% Cab Franc/ 45% Cab Sauv/ 23% Merlot, smooth berry fruit with beautifully balanced oak and spice.

* Shaw Vineyards > 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon, $19.99, excellent color and balance, soft mouthfeel with medium tannins with a dash of pepper on the finish.

* Prejean Winery > 2005 Cabernet Franc, $15.99, intense berry fruit with hints of spice with a silky smooth mouthfeel and a long finish, a delicious wine.

* Anthony Road Wine Co. > 2005 Cabernet Franc (33%)/ Lemberger (67%), beautiful smoky raspberry flavors with soft velvety tannins.

* Arcadian Estate Winery, > Cafe Noir, $10.99, excellent value, Baco Noir/ Rougeon blend, soft and fruity dry red, Cab Franc-like.

* Hermann Wiemer Vineyards > Dry Rose', $11, excellent value, nice smoky cherry, extremely well balanced

* King Ferry Winery > Meritage, $22.99, Cab Franc/Merlot/CabSauv, ripe black cherry flavors with hints of leather and spice, smooth and balanced, heavy tannins, will age well.

* Castel Grisch Winery > Estate Reserve Burgundy, $9.99, excellent value, 75% Chancellor/ 25% Chardonnay, loads of black cherry into a long smooth finish.

* Montezuma Winery > 2004 Merlot, $17.99, opens with tasty berry fruit with deep toffee undertones into a long smoky finish, deep dark and smoky, nice

* Keuka Lake Vineyards > 2005 Leon Millot, $12, dry red hybrid, excellent value, 50 year old vines, deep color, berry aromas, 1 year in newer French oak, deep black raspberry flavor with nice oak.

* Seneca Shore Wine Cellars > 2001 Cab Sauv/Cab Franc, $29.99, abundant plum with chocolate notes, coming into its peak. > 2003 Lemberger, $19.99, smooth raspberry into a smoky finish.

* Long Point Winery > 2004 Syrah, $16.99, light-bodied but with abundant berry fruit with undertones of spice and oak. > 2006 Moon Puppy, $9.99, excellent value, unique semi-sweet Cabernet Franc that really works, 3% Residual Sugar brings out loads of cherry.

* Miles Wine Cellars > 2002 Milestone, $29.95, 50% Cab Franc/ 50% Merlot, Hungarian oak, Deep Plum with Dark Chocolate overtones, Yum. > 2005 Pinot Noir, $24.95, French oak, A perfect balance of cherry and oak.

* Bloomer Creek Vineyard > 2006 Cafe' Red, Cabernet Franc, $12.99, excellent value, Light-bodied but with abundant smoky strawberry.

* Hazlitt 1852 Vineyards > 2005 Merlot, $18.99, Medium tannins, deep and dark with fruit that just won't end, Yum.

* Lakewood Vineyards > 2005 Cabernet Franc, $15.99, very soft, beautifully balanced fruit and oak.

* Lucas Vineyards > 2006 Cabernet Franc Reserve, $17.99, Heavy semi-soft tannins, soft cherry that will age nicely. > 2006 Syrah Reserve, $24.99, lovely complex nose, beautiful cherry/raspberry, made to age. If these 2 are indicative of the 2006 Finger Lakes reds, all I can say is Wow! And I thought the 2005's were awesome.

* Fulkerson Winery > 2005 Pinot Noir, $20, smokey raspberry with sweet oak is a delicious combination. > 2005 Noiret, one of the newest Cornell grapes, complex nose of floral, mint, and pepper, complex flavors of cherry, plum, and cola with medium tannins, it sold out quickly.

* Sheldrake Point > 2004 Cabernet Franc, $16.99, layers of plum, cherry, and raspberry.

* Red Tail Ridge Winery > 2006 Dry Rose', 80% Pinot Noir/ 20% Cab Franc, smooth strawberry/cherry into a nice long finish.

* Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellars > 2003 Merlot, $17.99, soft medium tannins, smooth nd balanced.

* Cobblestone Farm Winery > 2006 Cabernet Franc, $16.99, Rich berry fruit with hints of pepper and spice, another wine that shows the promise of the 2006 Finger Lakes Reds.

* Knapp Winery > Serenity, $11.95, Baco Noir, excellent value, .8% RS, fresh and fruity.

Congratulations to all of the Finger Lakes Red Wine winners for 2007!!! Unfortunately, with this blog's budget, all you win is the great feeling of knowing that your winemaking skills are appreciated and acknowledged! Besides, you don't need another award clogging up your walls, do you?

Stay tuned for the White Wine Winners coming soon.

Monday, November 26, 2007

More Medals for Finger Lakes Wine

Here are the Finger Lakes Gold Medal winners at the recent American Wine Society Commercial Wine Competition:

Chateau Frank, New York
NV Celebre, Double Gold
2000 Blanc de Noirs, Gold
2000 Blanc de Blancs, Gold
NV Celebre Rosé, Gold

Chateau Lafayette Reneau, New York
NV Emperor's Blush, Gold

Cobblestone Farm Winery, New York
2006 Cobblestone Red, Gold

Dr. Konstantin Frank, New York
2006 Riesling, Semi-Dry, Gold

Fox Run Vineyards, New York
NV Sable, Gold

Glenora Wine Cellars, New York
2006 Dry Riesling, Finger Lakes, Gold

Click here for the complete results (Go to 2007 Results)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

- Myself & Mrs. Wino wish you all a Very Happy Thanksgiving!!!
- Don't forget about our military men and women. Click here for ways that you can help our soldiers.

- I thought that these were pretty cute. Glenora Wine Cellars have come up with some clever wine labels for the Holidays. My favorite is Grinchtraminer. These wines are available for a limited time at Glenora Wine Cellars.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Finger Lakes News & Notes - Nov.15, 2007

Well, Thanksgiving is just around the corner already, the 2007 grapes have started on their journey to becoming fantastic Finger Lakes wine, and the cold winter season is soon upon us. Thank You to all the great people that I've met and who have emailed me and who have come out to see my shows and who have bought my CD (see the link to the left for more info on the CD, which makes a great gift) and to all of you who read my blog! I truly cherish you all and Give Thanks for you and for all the blessings in my life! Also, I'll be posting my very own 1st Annual Finger Lakes Wine Awards soon. Stay tuned.

- It's time once again for Thanksgiving wine suggestions

- It's Holiday time in The Finger Lakes

- Geneseo woman swims across 11 Finger Lakes to beat obesity

- Jeff Richards explains the difference between rose' and blush wine

- Sandra Silfven reviews Finger Lakes Rieslings and Rick Lyke also shares his thoughts

- Dr. Frank once again wins Greatest Wine Producer in Atlantic Northeast

- Plane crash lands in Seneca Lake

- Thanksgiving wine suggestions from NPR

- New York Wine Grape Task Force has been formed

- The Nose recommends Finger Lakes wine for Thanksgiving

- Sad times for the Keuka Maid Personally, I hope that they can find a way to keep it on Keuka Lake. Mrs. Wino & I have enjoyed our time cruising on her. It would be a shame if she weren't there.

- Prejean Winery wins Best Value Wine Awards from Beverage Tasting Institute Prejean's Gewurztraminer is also one of my favorites and Prejean makes an excellent Cabernet Franc

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Help Support the Osborn Family of Fox Run at Benefit Wine Dinner

If you can, please plan on coming out to this Benefit or please donate items. For more information about the benefit or to make a donation, call the Yates County Chamber of Commerce at 536-3111. See more information in the article below from the Finger Lakes Times.

Benefit will help Fox Run after fire By AMANDA FOLTS/Finger Lakes TimesMonday, November 5, 2007 11:03 AM CST

PENN YAN - Area winery and restaurant owners have banded together to help one of their own, organizing a wine and dine benefit for the owners of Fox Run Winery, whose home was damaged in an Oct. 27 fire. Scheduled for Nov. 13 at Anthony Road Winery, the benefit will raise money for members of the Osborn family, who escaped injury but lost a pet in the fire. Guests will receive a wine glass and plate to take to the stations set up at the winery. Restaurants will have samples of their best dishes at the tables, and other Finger Lakes wineries will provide tastings of their wines. “More than anything, I hope they realize how much the community cares about them and supports them,” said Meredith Race, Anthony Road's tasting room manager. Restaurants providing food for the event include the Red Newt, Veraisons, the caf頡t Fox Run, Simply Red Bistro at Sheldrake and the Classic Cafe in Dundee. Wineries that will be pouring include Glenora, Fulkerson, Four Chimneys and Bully Hill.

There will also be a silent auction, which will include gift certificates, wines and local art. Organizers are still accepting contributions. “We have a great committee - we pulled the event together very quickly,” said Joyce Hunt, co-owner of Hunt Country Winery. “We had a good response from wineries and restaurants, so we hope the community will support it by showing up.” Hunt said her husband is a volunteer firefighter and that he saw fairly substantial damage when he went to the Osborn's house. She said the funds from the benefit will help the family get back on its feet and replace the possessions they lost in the fire. The Osborns are renting a house in Geneva until their Benton home can be rebuilt. Ruth Osborn said she believes repairs will take about six months. Only the back of the house was burned, she said, but smoke and water damaged the rest.

The kitchen, laundry room, pantry, back and side porches, powder room and both bathrooms are completely gone, but the attic and roof remain intact. Osborn stressed the need for people to check the personal contents coverage on their insurance policies, which basically covers everything in the house that is not nailed down. “You think you have enough - then something like this happens,” she said. “It's really an eye-opener.” Most of all, Osborn said, her family has benefited from the care, support and outpouring of kindness they have received since the fire.
“We've had so much support and love - calls, E-mails, people just stopping in,” she said. “Everyone offering us places to stay, to do our laundry, to walk our dog. We've had food brought to us. Even people we don't know. It's amazing.”This weekend, the Osborns and some of their friends plan to go through the house to salvage anything that was not destroyed and discard anything that was. She said some of the furniture can be saved, but the family's beds are gone. Osborn's husband Scott and her 17-year-old son Michael were in the house at the time of the fire. Both were able to exit without injury and save their dog, but their cat was lost. “Something good always comes out of something bad.” Osborn said. “We feel so rich to have the friends we have. There's so much support to help us get through this, we can't thank people enough.” The benefit will be held Nov. 13 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Anthony Road Winery, 1020 Anthony Road. “We're just happy we can help out,” Martini said. “We have good space for everyone to congregate. People can come and share good food and good wine with good friends.”

For more information about the benefit or to make a donation, call the Yates County Chamber of Commerce at 536-3111.