More Red Blends On Long Island

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Long Island wine country is about a hundred miles East of Manhattan. From my neighborhood it’s an easy drive on the Long Island expressway straight East as the crow flies to the end of the highway at exit 73. Make a quick right at the outlet mall and keep driving East until you come across the wineries. The road splits in two, main road (route 25) and sound avenue with wineries lining both roads.

On an overcast Sunday afternoon I took another drive out and sampled red blends.

 

Peconic Cellar Door  2885 Peconic Lane, Peconic

This tasting room shares the same building at the Winemakers Studio, they pour wines from wineries that don’t have their own tasting rooms.

2014 As If Wines “Persistence”. This is the first time I’ve tried wines from this producer, they buy local grapes and vinify at a local crush.

A blend of Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Sauvignon, very dark purple with a purple rim, dark chocolate and sour cherry notes on the nose, tight, bright fruit with crisp acidity and some stemmines on the finish.

 

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Mattebella Vineyards  46005 Main Road, Southhold.

The is a small, mom and pop vineyard operation using sustainable viticultural practices for their Italian heritage influenced wines with a small, cozy tasting room.

2008 “Old World Blend”. A blend of Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. One of the owners was pouring and highly recommended that I try this wine because the wine has aged well and at its peak now. Dark red to black in color with crushed dark fruit and some mint on the nose, chewy dusty fruit and silky tannins, roast nuts and violets on the finish. If I would have tasted this wine blind I would have guessed Chianti.

 

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Lenz Vineyards  38355 Main Road, Peconic

One of the original wineries out east, established in 1978.

2014 Merlot “Estate”. A blend of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, Black and thick in color, peppermint and crushed rocks on the nose, tight, plummy fruit with tart, firm acids at the end.  

 

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Roanoke Vineyards Tasting Room, Love Lane, Mattituck.

Long Island’s only membership based vineyard, their tasting room is on Love Lane, a two block long business district with a nice deli across the street and a cheese shop next door.

2015 “Marco Tulio“. About an equal blend of Cabernet Franc and Merlot, dark red, damp earth and slate on the nose, chewy dark fruit, balance acidity with chocolate notes on the finish.

 

 

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VinExpo New York 2018

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Vinexpo is a wine and spirits trade show that originated in Bordeaux France and is now held on odd-numbered years in Bordeaux and in Asia in even-numbered years. It is where trade professionals such as importers, distributors and Sommeliers can network with each other and to be exposed to new products.

Vinexpo New York took place on March 5 & 6 at the Jacob K Javits convention center located at 655 West 34th Street on the far west side of Manhattan. It’s the first time Vinexpo has hosted an event in New York City since 2002 and since then, the United States became the largest market for wines so I suppose it made business sense to host another one in this city this year.

I attended on Tuesday and the Javits Center was a beehive of activity since there were several other events other than Vinexpo being held at the Center. The expo itself was not very crowded, speaking with some of the vendors they felt the attendance was greater the day before. That might have been because of competing trade events being held that week and because I think that since the expo charged the trade a hefty entrance fee that many in the industry balked at paying and didn’t show up. I did attend a couple of very nice seminars.

 

Some interesting wines that I sampled:

2015 Beaux Freres Pinot Noir “The Beaux Freres Vineyard”

2014 Bouchard & Fils “Vigne de L’Enfant Jesus”

2014 Yangarra Vineyards Grenache

2014 Narbona Tannat

2015 Domaine de La Charbonniere Chateauneuf du Pape “Cuvee Les Haute Brusquieres”

2015 Chateau D’Issan

2015 Chateau Beychevelle

2015 Chateau Clarke

 

Seminars:

Comparative Tasting of the Northern Rhone AOC’s of Saint-Peray, Cornas and Saint-Joseph

2016 Eric et Joel Durano (St-Peray). A blend of Marsanne and Roussanne. Medium gold with floral notes and green herbs on the nose, juicy cantaloupe on the fruit.

2016 Maison Ferraton (St-Peray). 100% Marsanne. Medium gold, floral and honey notes on the nose with tart, kiwi flavors on the finish.

2014 Cave de Tain (St-Joseph). Syrah. Cloudy, dark red, red leather on the nose, chewy ending with tight, silky tannins.

2011 Delas (St-Joseph). 100% Syrah. Cloudy black, nice perfume of dark flowers and fresh herbs, silky red fruit and chalk notes on the balanced finish.

2014 Domainea du Tunnel (Cornas). 100% Syrah. Cloudy black with a purple rim, roasted meat and nuts on the nose, tight and tart with a long finish.

2015 Les Vins de Jean-Luc Colombo (Cornas). 100% Syrah. Cloudy black with a purple rim, sweet bacon on the nose, chewy, silky bright dark fruit with firm tannins.

 

New, Old and Different: Spanish Grapes To Know

2017 Bermejo (Lanzarote) Malvasia. Medium gold, grassy, salty nose, bright grassy fruit.

2016 Vina Goseval Cepas Vellas (Valdearras) Godello. Light gold, green, grapey nose, spicy fruit.

2015 Bodegas Arrayan La Suerte (Mentrida) Garnacha. Medium purple, salty nose, dusty red licorice fruit.

2015 Tridente Prieto Picudo (Castilla y Leon) Prieto Picudo. Cloudy black, ripe red fruit and roasted meat on the nose, cherry and dark chocolate on the chunky fruit.

2015 Descendientes de J Palocios Ville de Corullon (Biezo) Mencia. Opaque dark purple, closed nose of roast meat, tight fruit with notes of roasted nuts, firm tannins.

2014 Vivanco Coleccion Maturana Tinta (Rioja) Maturana. Cloudy black, strawberry jam on the nose, chewy, jammy fruit, moderate balance.

2011 Bodegas LAN Cuimen (Rioja) Tempranillo. Cloudy black, crushed black fruit and crushed rock on the nose, chunky, chewy, crisp finish.

2015 Finca Collado Delit Monastrell (Alicante) Monastrel. Cloudy dark purple with barnyard notes on the nose.

2015 Mustiguillo Finca Terrerazo (Vina del Pago Terreazo) Bobal. Opaque dark purple, closed nose of black licorice, sweet fruit with moderate tannins.

 

Planet Bordeaux NYC

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Planet Bordeaux is a French trade organization that represents the wineries of the Bordeaux AOC and Bordeaux Superieur appellations from the world’s largest fine-wine vineyards. Bordeaux is justifiably famous for its grand cru wines from the famous Chateaux. Those wines are also very expensive but these off the radar regional wines, which are over half the production of the Bordeaux appellation, are more accessible in both price and style.

In February and March the organization held various trade and consumer tastings of its member wineries around New York City. On Sunday evening March 4th, they held a tasting for members of the trade. That tasting was held at O’Cabanon restaurant located at 245 West 29th street in Manhattan.

They poured sparkling wines, whites and several reds, many from the excellent 2015 vintage but from other vintages as well. I wasn’t familiar with many of the producers but there were some nice drinking wines that didn’t break the bank.

Some of what I sampled:

 

2010 Chateau Montlau

2012 Domaine del Ile Margaux

2014 Domaine del Ile Margaux

2012 Chateau La Rose du Pin

2014 M de Monsegur Reserve Cabernet Franc

2013 Chateau Boutinet

2014 Chateau Donjon de Bruignac

2014 Chateau de Seguin Cuvee Carpe Diem

2014 Chateau La France Cuvee Gallus

2015 Chateau Grand Jean

2015 Chateau Lauduc

2015 Chateau Lauduc Grande Cuvee

2015 Chateau Montlau

2015 Chateau de Bel

2015 Chateau Tayet Cuvee Prestige

2016 Chateau Haut Favereau

2016 Ipsum Carmenere

 

Bacon & Bourbon At Astor Center

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The Astor Center is the event space of Astor Wine & Spirits which is located at 399 Lafayette Street in Manhattan. Throughout the year they hold all sorts of spirits, cocktails and wine events and classes at the Center.

On February 17th they held their 10th annual Bacon & Bourbon event. It was a walk-around tasting of over 60 All-American whiskey that was accompanied by copious amounts of bacon and bacon infused snacks (including ice cream). Many of the well-known whiskey companies were in attendance pouring their small production (and expensive) specialty whiskey as well as smaller not as well known producers many of which produced proprietary whiskey for Astor.  The event was open to the consumer and there were two sessions. I attended the afternoon session and it was a nice way to spend a snowy afternoon.

Some of what I sampled:

 

Jim Beam Masterpiece Bourbon

Jim Beam Single Barrel Bourbon

Maker’s Mark Astor Private Select Bourbon

Knob Creek 25th Anniversary Cask Strength Single Barrel (121°-125°)

Wild Turkey Rare Breed Bourbon

Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit Bourbon

Booker’s Sip Awhile’ Small Batch Bourbon

Four Roses Astor Cask Strength Single Barrel Bourbon (122.2°)

Smooth Ambler Contradiction Bourbon

Barrell Bourbon Batch #12 Bourbon

Barrell Bourbon Full Proof Astor Barrel (126° 174 bottles produced)

Black Dirt Bourbon

Black Dirt Single Barrel Bourbon

Charles Medley 12yr Old Kentucky Bourbon

Kings County Distillery Peated Bourbon

Balcones Brimstone Smoked Corn Whisky

Balcones Texas Old Single Malt Whisky

Pikesville Straight Rye

Potrero Single Malt Straight Rye

A.D. Laws Straight Rye

A.D. Laws Bottled In Bond Rye