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)