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Finger Lakes

Forge Cellars Les Alliés Finger Lakes Riesling 2014

Forge Cellars Les Alliés Finger Lakes Riesling 2014

Another taught and racy Riesling from Forge Cellars. This time, the grapes are sourced from Les Alliés vineyard, which lies on the east side of Lake Seneca. The vines are planted in shale and gravelly loam, as such, the profile is lean and citrusy, with hints of lemon zest and pear, layered under wet shell and river rock. The use of large oak barrique is evident on the palate, lending depth and texture to tension. It's bracingly acidic and slightly oxidized, straight though to the finish. 0.3% RS 12.5% ABV | Sample Forge Cellars 9.1 Points...

Forge Cellars Sunrise Hill Vineyard Finger Lakes Riesling 2014

Forge Cellars Sunrise Hill Vineyard Finger Lakes Riesling 2014

As with the other Forge Rieslings I've tried, the 2014 Sunrise Hill Vineyard is lithe and electric. it possesses tactile, nervy tension. The nose is somewhat reserved, though swirling reveals white flowers, lime zest, mint and a pinch of granulated honey. It feels very pure—at the core, a bracing, linear expression is accented by lemon pith, and Asian pear that slowly, ever so slowly, dwindles to a slightly chalky finish. Nice with fried oysters. 12.5% ABV | Sample Forge Cellars 9.o Points...

Forge Cellars Harvest Ridge Vineyard Finger Lakes Riesling 2014

Forge Cellars Harvest Ridge Vineyard Finger Lakes Riesling 2014

The first impression is one of petrol and rubber ball on the nose, accented by d’Anjou pear, lemon drop and early spring blossoms. It’s as lean and wiry as I’ve come to expect from Riesling grown in the Finger Lakes region—perhaps even a shade more so—clearly Forge is pushing the envelop in terms of acidity and sheer white grapefruit pithiness. Moreover, the winery ages their Rieslings in neutral oak, an unorthodox practice that yields some interesting results texturally, and also on the back palate. The finish is drawn out, minerally and mouthwatering. .25 RS 12.5% ABV | Sample Forge Cellars 8.8 Points...

Forge Cellars Finger Lakes 'Classique' Pinot Noir 2014

Forge Cellars Finger Lakes ‘Classique’ Pinot Noir 2014

Forge Cellars is an intriguing collaboration between Louis Barruol, proprietor of St. Cosme in Gigondas, wine grower Rick Rainey, and vintner Justin Boyette. Their 2014 'Classique' Pinot Noir is fine-boned and poised with floral, woodsy aromatics of decaying rose petals, hibiscus, underbrush, and sous bois. It's translucent quinacridone violet with lean, elegant curves underpinned by high-toned red berries, rose hips and crushed stone that tapers to a lingering finish. 12.3% | Sample Forge Cellars 9.1 Points...

Ravines Wine Cellars Dry Riesling 2013

Ravines Wine Cellars Dry Riesling 2013

The 2013 Ravines Dry Riesling boasts a sweet nose of acacia honey, lemon budino pudding, and golden delicious apples—a bit deceptive given the palate, which is lean and nervy, a shock of electric acidity. Lightening-like step leaders dance across the tongue, branching and splitting into lemongrass, petrol and briny oyster shell, all of which neatly crest into a long and rather bracing finish. 12.5% ABV | Sample Ravines Wine Cellars 8.9 Points...

Hermann J. Wiemer Vineyard

Finger Lakes Riesling: A Portrait in Minerality

Mid-August marked my first trip to New York, I arrived a day ahead of the Wine Bloggers Conference, granting myself time to acclimate to balmy Upstate New York and perhaps more importantly, time to do a bit of exploring. My friend and fellow wine writer, Thomas Riley was in town ahead of schedule too, and the two of us set out to roam the Finger Lakes wine trail at a leisurely pace. Our second stop was at one of the region’s oldest and most respected wineries, Herman J. Wiemer, a tasting room experience that proved to be extraordinarily interesting. Our host, Oskar Bynke led us to a large map of Herman J. Wiemer’s estate vineyards. The map, suspended behind a simple tasting bar serves as a stunning and informative visual backdrop that conveys not only a sense of the variable topography surrounding glacier-carved Lake Seneca, it also provides a birds-eye view of each distinct parcel, it’s soil profiles and myriad clones. As we tasted, Oskar explained key differences between the wineries’ three estate vineyards. The HJW vineyard is the oldest site, established in 1976; it’s also the coolest, least sheltered of the trio. The vines are a mile from the river’s edge, at about 800...

Hermann J. Wiemer Vineyard

Finger Lakes Riesling: A Portrait in Minerality

Mid-August marked my first trip to New York, I arrived a day ahead of the Wine Bloggers Conference, granting myself time to acclimate to balmy Upstate New York and perhaps more importantly, time to do a bit of exploring. My friend and fellow wine writer, Thomas Riley was in town ahead of schedule too, and the two of us set out to roam the Finger Lakes wine trail at a leisurely pace. Our second stop was at one of the region’s oldest and most respected wineries, Herman J. Wiemer, a tasting room experience that proved to be extraordinarily interesting. Our host, Oskar Bynke led us to a large map of Herman J. Wiemer’s estate vineyards. The map, suspended behind a simple tasting bar serves as a stunning and informative visual backdrop that conveys not only a sense of the variable topography surrounding glacier-carved Lake Seneca, it also provides a birds-eye view of each distinct parcel, it’s soil profiles and myriad clones. As we tasted, Oskar explained key differences between the wineries’ three estate vineyards. The HJW vineyard is the oldest site, established in 1976; it’s also the coolest, least sheltered of the trio. The vines are a mile from the river’s edge, at about 800...

Knapp Dry Rosé 2014

Knapp Dry Rosé 2014

The 2014 Knapp Dry Rosé is a piquant blend of 85% Cabernet Franc 15% and Pinot Noir with delicate aromas of alpine strawberries and cherry blossoms with top note of breezy line-dried linen. It's equally light and on the palate with supple softness tinged with pomelo and chalk. It's worth noting that Knapp has too, the Vineyard Restaurant at their venue. It's worth checking out while in the Finger Lakes. Sample Knapp Winery & Vineyard  8.6 Points...

Hermann J. Wiemer Josef Vineyard Riesling 2013

Hermann J. Wiemer Josef Vineyard Riesling 2013

Another great wine from my recent trip to the Finger Lakes. The Hermann Wiemer Josef Vineyard Riesling 2013 was poured alongside of two other single vineyard designate Rieslings to showcase micro-terroir. True to form, Josef Vineyard is a warmer, more protected site, and the wine is perceptibly lusher than its siblings, with showy notes of white peaches, honeysuckle and pear. Arching acidity finds its course through layers of glycerol-laden stone fruit and delicate traces of minerality. 11% ABV | Sample Hermann J. Wiemer Vineyard 9.1 Points...

Hermann J. Wiemer Riesling Magdalena Vineyard 2013

Hermann J. Wiemer Riesling Magdalena Vineyard 2013

A great example of a more sheltered, slightly warmer site on Lake Seneca, the Hermann J. Wiemer Magdalena Vineyard Riesling is rounder and fleshier as compared with other estate parcels. Pronounced aromas drenched in forest honey, apricots, white flowers and baking spice waft from the glass. On the palate, its quite lush, with mouth-coating glycerine, stone fruit and an engraved acid backbone that seems typical of Finger Lakes wine. A suggestion of minerality ushers this wine to a lingering close. 12.5% ABV | Sample Hermann J. Wiemer Vineyard 9.3 Points...