Additional Gems from the Finger Lakes

New York, Tasting Notes

Visiting New York’s Finger Lakes AVA this spring gave me the opportunity to taste many wines from properties in this bucolic wine region.  Perhaps you are familiar with fine examples of Finger Lakes Riesling (two of which are noted below), as there are many Rieslings made here.  Several other varieties are being crafted in the Finger Lakes that deserve accolades too:

Hermann J Wiemer Vineyard 2017 Gruner Veltliner:  Earthiness and citrus notes greet the nose with this well-crafted Gruner.   Minerality, a touch of herbs, and crunchy Granny Smith apples are joined by lemon-lime accents and zingy acidity from the alluring start, through mid-palate, to the lasting finish.  Brilliantly balanced and sleek with promise of age-worthiness.   SRP:  $27

Fox Run Vineyards 2017 Silvan Riesling:  This stunning, minerally driven wine is everything I reach for in a well-made Riesling.  Engaging aromatics with a classic touch of petrol lead to an exhilarating mouthful of white peach, wet stone minerality, crushed herbs, and citrus elements.  Fermenting in small oak barrels contributes a lovely textural quality, and additional depth.  Pristinely balanced, smooth, and pure, with a long, refreshing finish; wow!  SRP: $25

Anthony Road Wine Company 2018 Cabernet Franc Lemberger:  This lush, glossy wine is a blend of 52% Cab Franc and 48% Lemberger.  It displays plenty of personality, beginning with an entrancing earthiness on the nose.  On the palate, blackberry, ginger-scented plum sauce, tarragon, and understated elements of sautéed sweet red peppers come alive.  A pretty citrus overlay adds a nice pop of flavor through the persistent finish.   SRP:  $20

Dr. Frank Winery 2017 Gruner Veltliner:  The shimmering hue and beautiful floral aromas are captivating at first swirl.   Bursting with citrus on the nose, the wine unravels deliciously on the palate, with layers of fresh squeezed grapefruit juice, lemon-splashed crisp apples, and finely chopped herbs entwining.  Well balanced and vivacious, and the zesty finish is bright and lifted.  SRP:  $14.99

Zugibe Vineyards 2106 “4 Freds”  Red:  This spirited red blend, honoring four generations of Freds, is composed of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cab Franc, Lemberger and Merlot.  Nicely dry and juicy, it showcases an enticing aroma of fresh picked berries and spice.  Filling the mouth are flavors of cassis, boysenberries, blueberries, milk chocolate and hints of nutmeg.  Spiced oak tones add depth through the satisfying finish.  SRP: $21.99

Fulkerson Winery 2016 Gruner Veltliner:  This sassy Gruner starts off with lemon-lime and stone fruit aromas waking up the senses. Sun-ripened peaches, a suggestion of white peppercorns, blanched almonds, minerality, and lemon curd flow with ease on the palate. Crisp and vivid, it is enlivening all the way through.  SRP:  $14

Penguin Bay 2017 Riesling; Tropical fruit aromas pave the way for a juicy mouth full of sweet summer peaches, refreshing lime sherbet, mango, and a touch of herbs.  The texture is creamy, and a nice level of balancing acidity keeps it bright and buoyant, a delightful summer afternoon sipper.  SRP:  $14.99

Inspire Moore Rhythm 2017 Gruner Veltliner:  This classic Gruner gleams with citrus blossom up front, fully engaging the senses.  Enchanting the palate are layers of chamomile, succulent white nectarines, Asian pears, and a pinch of white pepper melding in harmony.  Finely balanced and well-integrated with a minerally streak from first energetic sip to the extended last one.  $18.99

Heron Hill Winery 2017 Eclipse White:  This easy to quaff white wine, a blend of Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris and Chardonnay, opens with pleasing fruit-driven aromas.  Layers of white peach,  Honeycrisp apples, minerally notes, and a twist of lemon peel soar with vibrancy on the palate.  Elegant and fully flavored with a satin-like texture, and it finishes with verve.  SRP:  $18.99

Hosmer Winery 2017 Gruner Veltliner:  Broadcasting pleasing scents of tree fruits and a touch of eucalyptus, this Gruner is lively and expansive in the mouth.  The bright entry gains momentum as it traverses the palate, from the savory sage and Meyer lemon entry, to the lime-accented green apple mid-palate, through the finish that seems endless!  The mouthfeel is silky, and the exacting balance keeps it vitalizing.  SRP:  $16

Hazlitt 1852 Vineyards NV Solera Sherry:  Gloriously rich with beautiful offsetting acidity, here is a scrumptious dessert in a glass. Honeyed fresh figs, candied pecans, sweet mandarin orange segments, and creamy caramel apple flavors unravel delectably, coating every nook and cranny of the palate, and the lip-smacking finish is dream inducing!  SRP:  $21 (500ml)


Fox Run Vineyards in New York’s Finger Lakes AVA Shines with Purity

New York, Tasting Notes

An engaging afternoon with talented Fox Run Winemaker Peter Bell reinforced the beauty of wines from the Finger Lakes AVA.  Peter respects what the vineyard offers, and utilizes his knowledge and experience to impart purity and depth in his winemaking.  Each wine displays charisma, depth, and expressive varietal recognition.  Wines among my favorites include:

Fox Run Vineyards 2017 Traminette:  The scent of a beautiful spring floral bouquet captures the senses with this immaculately crafted Traminette.  Bursting with fresh fruit, it is irresistible. Tropical notes of lychee, honeydew melon, guava, pineapple and apricot join bracing acidity.  Finishes with tasty hints of banana custard and sweet citrus accents.   SRP:  $15

Fox Run Vineyards 2018 Dry Rosé:  This juicy and vitalizing  dry Rosé is composed of 50% Lemberger and 50% Pinot Noir. Beautifully balanced and thirst-quenching, offering up layers of  fresh red raspberries, Sweetheart cherries, strawberry soda, lemon drops and a pinch of crushed herbs.  Bright and invigorating on the lifted finish.  SRP:  $18

Fox Run Vineyards 2017 Doyle Family Vineyard Chardonnay:  This newly released Chard rocks the senses as its uber expressive aroma wafts from the glass.   Notes of crisp apple, honeysuckle, Meyer lemon, and fresh herbs burst brightly on the palate, with underlying accents of spiced oak.   Already showing glorious characteristics of this American favorite variety, with more life ahead!  SRP:  $13

Fox Run Vineyards 2017 Lemberger:  This distinctive Lemberger leads the way with a delicate fragrance of violets.  Generously fruited with boysenberries, olallieberries and raspberries highlighted by a twist of multi-colored peppercorns, and a trace of roasted marshmallows.  Elegant and lively with well managed oak notes, it leaves you wanting more.  SRP:  $21

Fox Run Vineyards 2017 Cabernet Franc:  This variety as a stand-alone wine is making great strides in America, and here is one you should not miss.  Expressive aromas draw you right into the glass.  Deep, dark and delicious, it shows off a satin smooth texture.  Blackberry, plum, graphite and spice notes interlace with subtle oak notes.  Brisk acidity and refined tannins carry the wine to a long-lasting finish.  SRP:  $22

Fox Run Vineyards 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon:  Intensely built and full bodied, this compelling Cabernet Sauvignon opens with black currant and spice box on the nose.   Broadening on the palate are well-defined flavors of cassis, wild blackberries, olive tapenade, spicy oak nuances and underlying earthy elements.  Powerful while elegant, it finishes with panache.  SRP:  $25

Fox Run Vineyards Fine Old Tawny:  This remarkable multi-vintage port style wine, crafted of 33% Cabernet Franc, 33% Lemberger, and 33% Cabernet Sauvignon, leads the way with tantalizing aromas of roasted nuts and honey drizzled dried apricots.  Rich and decadent on the palate, where flavors of mocha-dusted coffee beans, brown sugar and butter sautéed pecans, mandarin orange zest, and creamy toffee meld in harmony; a perfect nightcap!  SRP:  $50

The Fox Run Vineyards tasting room staff offers a warm welcome, and with their wide range of well-crafted wines, you’re bound to find a gem suited to every palate in your party.  Take the opportunity to visit their tasting room (located at 670 NY-14, Penn Yan, NY), near scenic Seneca Lake.  Meanwhile, visit their website,, for further information and the opportunity to order wines online.  Cheers!