Tuesday, May 30, 2006

New Riesling Joint Venture from Finger Lakes Winery

Amy Wu (Staff writer The Democrat and Chronicle) wrote, "Wine lovers will be getting a triple dose of Riesling in one bottle, thanks to some outside-the-box thinking from Finger Lakes winemakers...Anthony Road Wine Co., Fox Run Vineyards and Red Newt Wine Cellars are jointly launching a dry Riesling named Tierce, which refers to the project’s theme of three."

According to Wu, Tierce was released at a gala dinner at Red Newt on May 5, which was put together by three chefs. The new label, with its innovative screw cap, also officially launched Riesling month...

"Local industry observers say it is rare for winemakers to produce wine together. The collaboration shows the growth of the Finger Lakes wine region and its wineries’ efforts to spotlight the region and the Finger Lakes’ specialty: Riesling," reported Wu.

With the launch of interstate shipping, the wineries have come up with their own initiative to promote themselves.

“I know that this idea has been discussed (locally) in the past, but I can’t recall any instances where it’s been done,” said Dave Peterson, general manager of Swedish Hill, Goose Watch & Penguin Bay Wineries and also the president of the Finger Lakes Wine Alliance. “It’s not a common thing, to be sure.”

Tierce’s tale starts with a friendship involving the three winemakers, whose wineries are among those that ring Seneca Lake. Two years ago Johannes Reinhardt, Anthony Road’s wine maker, approached his friends David Whiting of Red Newt and Fox Run’s Peter Bell, who were equally enthusiastic about the experiment.

“I respected their approach to the business and style of wines,” said Reinhardt, pleased with the end result.

“None of our wines is even close to what we created together. It’s a totally new Riesling experience we opened,” said Reinhardt, whose family has been involved in winemaking since 1438.

The winemakers were confident they would mesh.

“I had kind of thought our styles aren’t too far separated and that they were doing things kind of the same as I was,” said Whiting, the co-owner at Red Newt Wine Cellars. But he pointed out that it helped that “the project came out of our friendship rather than us being thrown into a project and (being forced to) get along.”

From the get go, the team knew they wanted to produce Riesling, which is fast becoming the signature wine of the Finger Lakes.
Each of the winemakers contributed a third of their grapes and spent the early months of 2005 experimenting with different blends.

“We wanted to open peoples’ minds to a different style of dry, a different closure, a different experience,” said Reinhardt.

The winemakers made a limited edition of 95 cases to test the waters, which will be equally divided and sold at their individual tasting rooms.

But the theme of three doesn’t end there.

The launch dinner will be created by chefs from two of the wineries as well as the chef from new restaurant Madderlake Café in Geneva.
The winemakers expect that Tierce will be snapped up by wine aficionados who appreciate Riesling and seek the exclusivity of limited editions. While the product won’t be sold outside of tasting rooms, it is spotlighted on the Web site www.tiercewine.com.

One of the most challenging parts was naming the label. The end result refers to three and is also an industry term that points to a measure of a third of a wine keg.

Tierce’s creators say they expect the wine project will be an annual one; they are already working on the 2005 vintage.

“Once again it shows the creativity and the cooperation of the industry where people really want to work together to try something new and different with our signature grape, the Riesling,” said Jim Trezise president of the New York Wine & Grape Foundation. “It’s an experimental thing, we’ll see where it goes.”

“This cooperative Riesling winemaking effort is yet another example of the cooperative spirit of the Finger Lakes industry,” said winemaker Peterson.

Nevertheless, as Tierce 2004 waits to be uncorked, the winemakers have yet to come up with a definitive price tag for their creation. For a while, $33.33 was on the radar screen, but not anymore.

“The project is all about three, but we don’t want to get too carried away with threes,” Whiting laughed.

AWU@DemocratandChronicle.com

New Winery Opens in Northern New York





The Associated Press reported from Sacket's Harbor on May 30, 2006, that "a new winery opened its doors to the public last week in Jefferson County. The Yellow Barn Winery in Sackets Harbor has a full line of dry, semi-sweet, and sweet wines.

"It's the third winery in the county, joining the Spookhill Farms Winery in Adams and the Thousand Islands Winery near Alexandria Bay.

According to other sources, a fourth winery in Philadelphia is expected to open in 2007.



"Owner Nicholas Surdo says Yellow Barn has something for just about every wine lover, and some of the best grapes in New York," AP reported.

The address is:

Yellow Barn Winery
18876 County Rt. 66
Watertown, NY 13601
www.yellowbarnwinery.com
(315) 782-1824
Email: ybfarm@juno.com

From Rt. 81 North or South, Exit 45
From Salmon Run Mall, go east towards Sackets Harbor on Rt. 3. At the yellow light (the intersection of Rt. 3 and 180) turn left onto Rt. 66, and drive one mile. The 'Yellow Barn Winery' is on the left side of the road.

From Henderson and Westcott Beach
Take Rt. 3 to Sackets Harbor, and turn right on to Rt. 62 (Sulpher Springs Road). At the first intersection, turn left on to Rt. 66. Go 1/4 mile across Mill Creek to the 'Yellow Barn Winery' on your right.

Hours of Operation
May 25th - Labor Day
Sun - Wed: 11 am - 6 pm
Thurs, Fri, & Sat: 11 am - 8 pm

Peter Bell, winemaker at Fox Run, Lauded As Winemaker Who Makes a Difference




In the May/June 2006 issue of Vineyard & Winery Management Fox Run Vineyards winemaker Peter Bell picked up an endorsement of considerable weight. It seems that in the January 5, 2006 Vintage Experiences (Santa Rosa, CA), Dan Berger comended Bell as winemaker of quality wine who had not recieved the recognition he probably deserved.

According to Fox Run:
"Winemaker at Fox Run since the summer of 1995, Peter Bell shares owner Scott Osborn's conviction that the Vinifera revolution is still a young one. With proper clone and rootstock selection, trellising systems and cellar refinements, the world will begin to take notice of the superior wines of which the Finger Lakes region is capable.

"Born and raised in Canada, Bell began his winemaking career in Australia, where he earned a degree in enology at Charles Sturt University in New South Wales, where he also worked in the school's own winery. Upon graduation he became assistant winemaker for Hunter's Wines in New Zealand, producing Chardonnay, Riesling, and Sauvignon Blanc and experimenting with Pinot Noir. Leaving New Zealand, he turned down offers from Portugal and British Columbia in favor of the natural beauty and outstanding potential of the Finger Lakes. For five years he was winemaker at Dr. Konstantin Frank's Vinifera Wine Cellars on Keuka Lake where he made a number of award-winning wines.

"For Bell, the flip side of laissez-faire winemaking is the risk involved. The art is to know when not to do something to the wine, to apply a sort of benign neglect, yet to be ready to intervene when a hands-off approach would be disastrous. He describes himself as "extremely fussy" about hygiene -- "spoilage organisms are invisible and ubiquitous" -- and about minimizing oxygen contact, especially with aromatic wines, during racking, filtration, and bottling."


We on the east coast knew it all along.

Congrats to Peter Bell!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Barbecue at the Keuka Lake Wineries in New York State



For those of you who already know, I am a huge barbecue fan. I've attended many major events across the country, including Lenexa, and published many grilling and bbq books, including Big Daddy Zubba Bubba and Cookshack's two official smoker cookbooks. Now, in June, there's an event which mixes and matches two of my bggest passions...wine and BBQ!

On June 24 & 25, 2006 join the wineries of Keuka Lake for a terrific summer celebration! Each winery will be offering its best barbecue foods and recipes paired with a selection of great wines that are sure to set the standard for your BBQ success. Sauces served at each winery are all produced by local NYS businesses. Fee $20 per person, $25 per person at the door. 10AM to 5PM Saturday; Noon to 5PM Sunday. Sorry, groups over 20 not accepted on event weekends.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Sakonnet Champagne Also a Crowd Favorite



I spent many a summer day in my childhood walking the streets nd beaches of Newport, Rhode Isalnd. The cool mornings and breezy days were passed walking the avenues, whether near the wharf or by the large mansions never failed to excite me. Nor did the ocean side fun.

One of the great surprises of adulthood was the addition of several wineries in the area. Without question, one of the best wineries on the eastcoast is Sakonnet. So it is without forethought that we served one of their champagnes on my sons baptism as well.



Sakonnet Vineyards, in Little Compton, Rhode Island was founded in 1975 on the premise that the microclimate and soil conditions found along the Southeastern New England coast closely resemble some of the great wine regions of the world, particularly, the maritime climates of northern France.

They say Little Compton has all the charm the Hamptons used to have before they were "discovered," which is a nice way of saying "over run." It's a sleepy seaside community, filled with antique shops, lobster shacks, and beautiful homes, all set on gorgeous country lanes. It is breath-taking.

Their sparkling wine is a dry, hand-crafted wine. Pear, nectarine and citrus characters all come through. Also, fresh baked bread is abundant. Nice creamy finish. An elegant and charming sparkling wine, more than right for any occassion.


Events

Sakonnet Salutes the Summer: A Tempting Fete
Sunday, June 25, 2006
Sakonnet Vineyards
1:30 PM - 4:30 PM - Cost: $80.00
The afternoon will celebrate the careers and creativity of the nations leading women chefs, as well as Sakonnet Vineyards and our wines. Proceeds from the event will benefit WCR's Scholarship and Internship Program.
Attendance will be limtied to 400 guests; tickets are $80.00/person. ADVANCED RESERVATIONS ARE REQUIRED.
See main page of www.sakonnetwine.com for full listing of participating chefs & information

French Creek Ridge Vineyards and My Sons


French Creek Ridge Vineyards was founded in 1991 in Warwick Township, which is located in northwest Chester County, the south eastener coner of Pennsylvania. The property that was purchased was not a winery and vineyard . Janet and Fred Maki then proceeded to reshape the old farmhouse with log cabin and prototypical Chester County barn into what you see today. The farm-winery is an elegant, charming, beautiful and the best looking wineries on the east coast. The winery building is one of the prettiest barn/wineries I have ever seen, in either Chile, California, or elsewhere.

In Paris, France, on March 23, 2001 in a stunning coup for Eastern U.S. wines, French Creek Ridge Vineyards was awarded a gold medal for their 1997 Blanc de Blanc brut sparkling wine at the prestigious Viniales Internationales Wine Competition. It would have been a special victory for US manufacturer, but especially for viticulture here on the eastcoast.

Today, my sons Dylan and Dawson were baptized. And we wanted to choose a special wine. It was the J. Maki, Blanc de Blanc. Dominique grew up in hunt country Pennsylvania, riding many horses, and seeing many foxes. This is a special part of the country, with tremendous colonial era stone farmhouses and beautiful estates.

My wife is from Chester Springs. Very near Yellow Springs. These are delightful 18th century bucolic villages located just a few miles down the road from Kimberton and Charlestown, just off Route 113. George Washington used this as the first Revolutionary hospital. The native Americans first discovered mineral waters and utilized them for medicinal purposes. In the 19th century guests came to partake of the springs' restorative mineral waters. Visitors nowadays can stroll the paths through the stately water gardens that surround the legendary spring houses.


Pickering Hunt

Yellow Springs is also known for its Equestrian events - especially Fox Hunting! Participate in a stirrup cup with the members of the hunt. Marvel at majestic horses, elegant riders, and Penn-Marydale Fox Hounds as they search for the elusive red fox (don't worry, nowadays it's another member with fox scent to lure the hounds!)

The weather cooperated beautifully. The clouds and possible rain disappated, and bright shine bathed the neighborhood. While our celebration was supposed to start in the livingroom, with the bright blue skies, and burgeoning green trees, and flowering plants now beckoning, we put a Provencal table cloth out, with an array of deviled egss, Italian antipasto, and other canapes. And then we had some J. Maki Blanc de Blanc.

The straw colored wine, was bone dry, crisp, and elegant. In fluted glasses, the bubbles trailed up nicely and for a long time. We squinted with pleasure and smiled, for our boys, for the lovely weather, for friends and family, for the return of spring, and for the delicious wine.

Congrats to Dylan and Dawson from Mom and Dad....and special thanks and congrats to French Creek Ridge Vineyards on an excellent wine.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Howard G. Goldberg, NY Times, Applauds Bedell's New Series


In an article entitled, "Bottle Artistry, Inside and Out," Howard G. Goldberg wrote in the May 14, 2006 edition of the New York Times about Bedell Cellars new Taste Red and Taste White series. "AT first glance, the woman with the word "Taste" in red over her open mouth on the Bedell Cellars 2005 Taste White and 2004 Taste Red labels resembles a photographed Marilyn Monroe," wrote Mr. Goldberg.

According to Howard, the wines "result from a collaboration involving the original owner, Kip Bedell, who is now called the founding winemaker; John Irving Levenberg, the winemaker, who joined Bedell after working under the outstanding California winemaker Paul Hobbs; and a consulting oenologist, Pascal Marty, whose credentials include Château Mouton Rothschild in Bordeaux."

Howard wrote of Taste White, "Appealingly perfumed, a soft creamy texture, supple, elegant, a potpourri of flavor subtleties, piquant grapefruity acidity, charming, a model wine. Versatile at the table."

And on Taste Red Mr. Goldberg opined, "Beautiful glowing garnet color, a smoky and woody and deep-anise bouquet, herbal accents in the bouquet, supple and creamy texture, a somber flavor with bursts of cherry and berry notes and cocoa, poised in a Bordeaux-like way, stylish, pleasing dusty tannins, long on the palate."

Put another trophy up on the wall for Mike Lynne and Kip Bedell. Congratulations!
And of course, go to the New York Times to read the entire article at www.NYTimes.com

Summer Time and the call goes out for Cider!

There is no question in my mind that some of the best cider makers in North America are located on the eastern seaboard. And if anyone wants to disagree with that statement, it's plain they don't know what the hell they are talking about.

Ciders are not all sweet. The dry ones are an excellent accompaniment to fish dishes, muscles, clams, lobster, and other shellfish. And great with barbecue and fried chicken...and summer soups and salads.

These are some to look for:


1. Farnum Hill (New Hampshire)
Farmhouse, Semi-Dry, Extra Dry, Semi Dry Still, Kingston Black '03, and Sumer Cider are the line of ciders from Farnum Hill. At Farnum Hill, all they make is cider. It's is without question the most elegant series of ciders made, not only in this country, but stands up extremely well in the more elegant company of French, Belgian, and English ciders. These are for the most part, like dry, exotic sparkling wines. This is an elite house, and I am very jealous of whoever had the idea for this place, and very thrilled that I have discovered and had their ciders, and continue to serve them to my friends as well. If you have not tried them, you have missed out on one of the great pleasures in life. Am I gushing too much? It's not possible when it's Farnum Hill.


2. Warwick Valley (New York)
One of the best cider makers in America today. Absolutely fabulous. From Doc's Draft Hard Apple Cider ( great, semi-dry and effervescent refreshment) to the incredibly dry, delicate, and fragrant Doc's Draft Hard Pear Cider, to the tremendous Doc's Framboise, which is a dessert beverage that is on par with any dessert wine out there. The raspberry can be sipped on a long hot day...what a delicious enjoyment. The pear and raspberry are to die for and are absolutely unique! These two ciders rate with the great Belgian ale house, Lindemann's, whose fruit ales are among the best in the world.


3. Breezy Hill Orchard and Cider (New York)
Elizabeth Ryan is among the most famous of the cider world's divas! She's been featured on Martha Stewart and Lifetime television. Her cider is sometimes hard to find, but well, well worth it!



4. Flag Hill Farm (Vermont)
Amanda Hesser has raved about their Hard Cider. But their still and sparkling are also very good. Champagne-esque. Fabulous!

5. Applewood Winery (New York)
Stone Fence Hard Cider is a sweet, hard cider, with a touch of honey. Very tasty and fun!

6. Bellwether Hard Cider (New York)
Delicious hard cider made in the Finger Lakes of New York. Bellwether cider is pale gold in color, medium-bodied, lightly sparkling and dry. It is slightly tangy, only a little yeasty, and it has abundant apple flavor. Delicious!

Monday, May 15, 2006

East Coast Wineries Spawns New Blog!



East Coast Wineries has spawned a new blog - Hudson River Valley Wineries. The new blog is dedicated to updating news an events related to food and wine in the Hudson River Region, and will include winery profiles, vintner and owner interviews, events, up-coing festivals, and highlight food happenings, and restuarants,etc.

This is a really exciting time for the Hudson River Valley, and I am very excited to be able to be able to do something to bring more awareness of this exciting and burgeoning new region.

Go to: hudsonrivervalleywine.blogspot.com

And enjoy!

Friday, May 12, 2006

New Jersey's First Festival of Wine and Other Winery Events



FIRST ANNUAL FESTIVAL OF WINE
Hosted at Alba Vineyard
Saturday, June 3rd & Sunday June 4th ~ Noon till 5:00 pm
The Gateway Regional Chamber of Commerce and J. Vero & Associates are proud to present the first annual New Jersey Festival of Wine hosted at Alba Vineyard & Winery in the Village of Finesville, Milford, New Jersey, June 3 and June 4. This weekend-long event will present the best of wines from around the world, and will also showcase gourmet foods from the same regions as the featured wines.

For additional information and admission fee for the New Jersey Festival of Wine please call 877-868-9501 or visit www.NewJerseyWineFest.com.

MAY 27 & 28 (Noon to 5:00 p.m.)
Blues & Wine at Waterloo Village Stanhope, NJ
With 17 wineries, this festival is one of the year’s most popular. Attendees can listen to great blues music performed by The Black Widow Blues Band and BC and the Blues Crew, take the kids to the “Kids Zone” area for activities especially for them, browse the craft vendors, purchase gourmet food, tour the classic and antique car display, or visit the beautifully restored village. Waterloo is a National Historic Site located in the Allamuchy Mountain State Park along the banks of the Musconetcong River in Sussex County. The site includes a 1625 Lenape Indian village with authentically recreated longhouses; an 1826 Farmsite with one of New Jersey’s only preserved log cabins; and the 1880 Canal Town with restored blacksmith, miller, General Store, Stagecoach Inn, homes and the Morris Canal with lock and towpaths.
Admission is $18 for adults and includes wine tasting, a wine glass, and admission into the restored village, $10 for ages 16-20 (admission to the restored village), under 16 free.

JULY 22 & 23 (Noon to 5:00 p.m.)
"A Walk in the Vineyard" Wine Trail Weekend at
Participating Wineries across the State
New Jersey wineries are hosting a “Walk In the Vineyard” Wine Trail Weekend on July 22 & 23. Visitors to participating wineries this weekend can sample great summertime wines, learn about the vineyard and how grapes are grown, talk with the winemakers, take wine cellar tours, and stock up on some great award-winning wines. The event (which is free at all but two wineries) takes place on New Jersey’s Wine Trails, which are day trips to several wineries.

Participating wineries include: Alba Vineyard, Village of Finesville, Milford (charges $5/person); Amalthea Cellars, Atco; Amwell Valley Vineyard, Ringoes; Balic Winery, Mays Landing; Bellview Winery, Landisville; Cape May Winery, Cape May; Cream Ridge Winery, Cream Ridge; DiMatteo Winery, Hammonton; Four JGs Winery, Colts Neck; Four Sisters Winery, Belvidere; Heritage Vineyards of Richwood, Richwood; Hopewell Valley Vineyards, Pennington; Renault Winery, Egg Harbor (charges $3/person); Silver Decoy Winery, Robbinsville; Tomasello Winery, Hammonton; Turdo Vineyards & Winery, North Cape May; Unionville Vineyards, Ringoes; Valenzano Winery, Shamong; and Westfall Winery, Montague.

AUGUST 12 & 13 (Noon to 5:00 p.m.)
Jersey Fresh Wine & Food Festival
Hopewell Valley Vineyards
Pennington, NJ
New Jersey wineries, restaurants and farmers are teaming up to celebrate the Garden State’s wealth of summer in one of the largest wine and food festivals the State has ever seen. On Saturday and Sunday, August 12th & 13th, visitors to the Jersey Fresh Wine & Food Festival at Hopewell Valley Vineyards in Pennington will sample award-winning wines from the State’s most celebrated vineyards while feasting on summertime dishes prepared with the season’s locally grown vegetables, fruits, seafood, chicken, meats, etc., dished up by some of the most exciting chefs in New Jersey. Visitors will also be able to purchase local produce and seafood to take home with them at the festival’s Farmer’s Market and Seafood Market.

The festival is being presented by the Garden State Wine Growers Association in conjunction with the Central New Jersey chapter of Slow Food, and the New Jersey Department of Agriculture -- organizations devoted to promoting the amazing abundance and variety of the Garden State. The festival is sponsored in part by Wegmans Wine & Spirits and Marriott Fairway Villas at Seaview.

This year a dozen or more of the State’s finest restaurants will be providing exciting summertime dishes. Gourmet food made from New Jersey produce, meats and seafood will be provided by Tre Piani, the Forrestal Village restaurant which has received New Jersey Monthly’s Reader’s Choice Award; John Henry’s, the extraordinary seafood restaurant in the Chambersburg section of Trenton; Rats, perennially listed as one of the best restaurants in New Jersey; No. 9, listed by New Jersey Life as one of their 50 favorite restaurants in the State; as well as High Street Grill, Lawrenceville Inn, Slow Food, Central New Jersey chapter; Mercer County Community College’s Culinary Institute and more.

Sixteen award-winning New Jersey wineries will be participating including Alba Vineyard, Finesville; Amalthea Cellars, Atco; Amwell Valley Vineyard, Ringoes; Bellview Winery, Landisville; Cape May Winery, Cape May; Cream Ridge Winery, Cream Ridge; DiMatteo Vineyards & Winery, Hammonton; Four JG’s Winery, Colts Neck; Four Sisters Winery, Belvidere; Heritage Vineyards of Richwood, Richwood; Hopewell Valley Vineyards, Pennington; Silver Decoy Winery, Robbinsville; Sylvin Farms, Germania; Tomasello Winery, Hammonton; Unionville Vineyards, Ringoes; and Valenzano Winery, Shamong.

Tickets are $20 for adults (children are free) and can be purchased at the door. Tickets include free wine tasting, a souvenir wine glass, and entrance into the cooking demonstrations and wine seminars. Food will be available for a nominal fee. The event, which will be under tents, will be held rain or shine. There will also be cheeses made from local artisans, fresh baked breads, cooking demonstrations, wine seminars, cook book authors, honey producers, displays from the New Jersey Mycological Association and the Garden State Seafood Association, a Jersey Fresh produce sampling tent courtesy of the New Jersey Department of Agriculture, a farmer’s market and seafood market with produce and seafood for purchase, craft vendors, a Kids Zone with activities especially for the younger attendees, and great jazz music.

This fun and informative event will take place on Saturday and Sunday, August 12th & 13th from noon to 5:00 p.m at Hopewell Valley Vineyards in Pennington, New Jersey. Directions to the vineyard can be found at the bottom of this page or by calling the vineyard at (866) HVV-Wine.

Slow Food is a non-profit organization formed in 1986 in Italy in response to the opening of the first McDonald’s in Rome. The organization currently has 100,000 members worldwide in 45 countries. Slow Food “promotes a philosophy of pleasure, protects small food producers who make quality products, counters the effects of industrial and fast food culture, and works towards safeguarding traditional food and wine heritage.” For further information on the Central Jersey Slow Food chapter contact Jim Weaver at (609) 452-1515.

WINERY EVENTS

Mother's Day
May 14, 2006
2:00pm Totally Tenors Tomasello Winery
225 White Horse Pike Hammonton, NJ 08037 Price: $75.00 per Ticket, $65.00 for Subscribers. Call 1-800-MMM-WINE to reserve.

MOTHER'S DAY CELEBRATION
Sunday, May 14th ~ Noon till 5:00 pm
Live Music: The VooDUDES
Children's activities
Wine and Food sold separately
FREE admission & FREE parking
Nominal Fee $ for Tasting
Bring chairs or a blanket
NO PETS ALLOWED ~ NO BYOB
By law, only Alba Vineyard’s wines
can be consumed on the property
Alba Vineyards

Father’s Day Music Fest
Unionville Vineyards
Saturday, June 17, 2006
12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Bring your lawn chairs and join us for a day of music, winery tours & relaxation. Light fare and snacks available for purchase.
Free gift for all dads!
Benefit for the Black River Horse Farm (a local farm that recently suffered from devastating fire to their business).
Admission:
$15 per person
$5.00 ages 5-20
Under (5) Free!

Blues Under the Stars
Unionville Vineyards
Saturday, July 15, 2006
4:00 PM-9:00 PM
Our annual “Blues Under the Stars” event. Also our annual benefit for the American Cancer Society! Bring your lawn chairs & join us for an evening of great Blues & great wine!
Music provided by Chuck Lambert Band, a 5 piece powerhouse blues band.
Admission $15 per person.
Unionville Vineyards will donate $5 of each admission to the American Cancer Society.
Rain date to be announced at a later date!

FATHER'S DAY CELEBRATION
Alba Vineyards
Sunday, June 18th ~ Noon till 5:00 pm
Live Music: The Jeff Bellfy Band
Children's activities
Wine and Food sold separately
FREE admission & FREE parking
Nominal Fee $ for Tasting
Bring chairs or a blanket
NO PETS ALLOWED ~ NO BYOB
By law, only Alba Vineyard’s wines
can be consumed on the property


SUMMERFEST 2006
“FIREWORKS” Alba Vineyards
Saturday ~ July 22nd ~ 4:00 pm till 10ish
(Rain date July 29th)
LIVE MUSIC: (2 bands)
Children's activities: Moon bounce, Face & Body Art,
Sandy Candy, Sand Art, Pony / Horse Rides,
Horse drawn Carriage Rides
Wine and Food sold separately
Admission: $10.00 (Adults)
$5.00 (6-12 years old)
Free (5 and under)
Bring chairs or a blanket
NO PETS ALLOWED ~ NO BYOB
By law, only Alba Vineyard’s wines can be
consumed on the property

Cream Ridge Winery
Saturday, June 17
Family Fun Day
Benefit for Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation
12 noon - 5:00 pm Wine tasting and tours. Music. Face painting and moonwalk for children. Food available for purchase. Wine releases: Pear, Fredonia.
Glass with $10.00 admission. Children free. All proceeds benefit JDRF

Cream Ridge Winery
AUGUST 5 & 6
15th Annual Bluegrass Music Festival
Listen to Bluegrass Bands all day!
12 noon - 5pm
Wine tasting and tours. Sample products from our gourmet shop. Wine release: Red Raspberry
Food available for purchase
Rain or Shine!
Glass with $8.00 admission, children free
No pets please

Cream Ridge Winery
SEPTEMBER 16 & 17
HARVESTFEST & PIG ROAST FESTIVAL
12 noon - 5 pm
Wine tasting and tours. Observe pig being roasted. Fresh Roasted Pork sandwiches available for purchase. See fruit crushed before it is made into wine. Gourmet food sampling. Live music. Face & pumpkin painting. Moonwalk.
Wine Releases: Apricot, Cherry
Glass with $8.00 admission.
RAIN OR SHINE!!!
no pets please

Pennsylvania's farmland paves the way to wine country



Picked this up today...an interesting read about Pennsylvania wine.

Pennsylvnia State's farmland paves the way to wine country
By Michelle Isham
Posted on Fri, May. 05, 2006 on the Centredily.com

Centre County residents know they live in the heart of farm country, but probably few are aware that the county is also on the edge of wine country. Tucked in the southwest corner of Pennsylvania's Upper Susquehanna wine region, there are six wineries within easy driving distance from State College.

On a sunny day in late April, my parents, a couple of friends and I chose three wineries -- Shade Mountain, Brookmere and Mount Nittany -- to make up a mini-tour.

We started by heading east through Penns Valley to Middleburg and to Shade Mountain Winery. Housed in a newly remodeled 19th-century bank barn on a hilltop two and half miles south of Penns Creek, the winery overlooks rolling vineyards. A large deck furnished with tables and chairs made us wish we'd had the foresight to bring bread and cheese to enjoy with a of bottle wine in the late morning sun.

Yes, late morning. Most wineries in the area are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Not knowing how long it would take us to complete our circuit, we left home at 9:15 a.m., and pulled into the Shade Mountain parking lot an hour and 15 minutes later. After poking around the winery store for 20 minutes, we sidled tentatively up to the counter. Fortunately, people who make their living creating wine tend not to be judgmental about sampling in pre-noon hours. We were quickly handed a wine list.

For those just discovering wine, a visit to a winery offers three main advantages over blindly selecting unknown bottles from the liquor store shelf. First, a staff is there tell you about the qualities of each wine and make suggestions. Second, the winemakers can tell you which varieties do best locally and what vintages to look for. For instance, according to Carolyn Zimmerman, who owns Shade Mountain Winery with her husband, Karl, 2005 was an especially good wine year in Pennsylvania. Third, you can sample the wines. Our group fell into two camps -- those who like dry wines and those who prefer semi-dry. The terms dry, semi-dry and sweet refer to the amount of sugar in a wine. In a fully dry wine, such as a Chardonnay, all the sugar from the fruit has been converted to alcohol during the fermentation process.

The winemakers at Shade Mountain and the Brookmere Winery in Belleville, which we visited next, said sweet wines sell especially well locally. The Zimmermans grow 25 varieties of grapes in their 60 acres of vineyards. From that, they bottle 39 varieties of wine for sale, including 11 fruit wines and the intriguing Six Dwarfs Mint Wine, as well as selling grapes to other wineries. My favorite is the Lemberger, a jammy red that falls between dry and semi-dry on the sweetness scale.

"Karl grows all grapes we use in our wine. He's vine to wine, you can kind of control the quality that way," Carolyn said.

From Shade Mountain, we went to Brookmere in picturesque farmlands of the Kishacoquillas Valley. Brookmere is best known for its Frog Hollow white, a sweet grapey wine made from Niagra grapes, but the winery also produces a selection of dry and semi-dry wines including Chambourcin, Cabernet Franc, Autumn Red and Valley Mist. The winery also produces a few varieties of sparkling wines in small batches. Here we sampled dry and semi-dry wines, settling on the earthy Autumn Red and the crisp Valley Mist.

Wines such as Chambourcin and Cabernet Franc are known as varietals, be-cause they're named for the dominant variety of grape used. In the United States, a wine made with at least 75 percent of one grape variety tends to be named as a varietal. Blends are made up of two or more varieties of grapes. Blends tend to be more creatively named, bearing monikers such as Autumn Red, Tailgate Red or Great White. The Chambourcin, Cabernet Franc and Reisling varieties grow well locally.

We ended our tour on the slopes of Mount Nittany at the Mount Nittany Winery in Centre Hall. Owners Joe and Betty Carol started out as amateur winemakers in 1983. Since then, their vineyard and winery have grown to five acres of vines and a production of 12,500 gallons of wine per year. Our host, Sandy Anderson, joked that as production grows, so does the winery, with Joe building new additions to the building each year.

Because it takes 18 pounds of grapes to get a gallon of juice, Mount Nittany augments its own harvest with grapes purchased from other Pennsylvania vineyards. At Mount Nittany, we tasted dry red wines, favoring the Montage and the smoky Mount Nittany Red.

At the end of the day, as we sipped one of our recently purchased bottles, we unanimously agreed our excursion into Pennsylvania wine country was a complete success. Not only did we pick up some great local wines, we explored a little of the central Pennsylvania countryside and gained some wine knowledge along the way.


from: http://www.centredaily.com/mld/centredaily/entertainment/14504459.htm

Lenn Thompson Goes Crazy!!!!! 50 IN 50 New Landmark in Wine Blogging!


Lenn Thompson is doing something you have to watch...and read. He's tasting 50 wines from 50 states...it's going to be a beautiful thing....here are the first two wines....you have to check this out!

The series is called 50 In 50.....IT IS AWESOME....A SALUTE TO MR. THOMPSON!

Announcing: 50 States. 50 Wineries. 50 Weeks
04/07/06 @ 02:56:26 am by Lenn Thompson


Every Friday on Wine Sediments, I bring you The Vines Less Tasted, a column that focuses on the wine world's lesser-known regions and lesser-known grapes. So far we've looked at blaufrankisch, Napa Gamay Noir and some upstate New York hybrids ... and while fun, I think it's time to get serious about this exploration of wines that I've never tasted (and I bet you haven't either).

Wine is made in every single one of the United States. There are so many wines out there beyond those made in California, Oregon, Washington and, yes, New York.

I mean, how many of you have had a wine from Idaho?

So, it is with great pleasure and excitement that I officially announce my plans to taste, and write about, wines from all 50 states over 50 weeks -- starting on May 5.

So, join me starting May 5 as I chronicle my virtual tasting tour of each of America's wine regions.

In the meantime, if you know of a meticulous muscadine producer in Alabama, a maker of brilliant baco noir in Wisconsin or any other wine in any other state that I should target, let me know.



50 in 50 #1: Massachusetts -- Westport Rivers Winery
05/05/06 @ 02:52:14 am by Lenn Thompson


To kick off our vinological tour of the United States and its wine regions, we head to New England of all places -- Westport, MA to be exact.

Westport Rivers was founded in 1982 by Bob and Carol Russell, who bought an old dairy farm in Westport. Their oldest son, Rob, planted their first vines in 1986 -- 40 acres of chardonnay, pinot noir and riesling. In the late 1990s the vineyard was expanded, now comprised of 80 acres of chardonnay, pinot noir, riesling, pinot meunier, rkatsitelli, pinot blanc and pinot gris. This 80-acre vineyard is now the largest in all of New England. The Russells' second son, Bill, joined the team in 1989 as winemaker.

http://www.wellfed.net/winesediments/winesediments.php
/2006/05/05/50_in_50_1_massachusetts_westport_river_1



50 in 50 #2: Oklahoma -- Nuyaka Creek Winery
05/12/06 @ 02:52:03 am by Lenn Thompson

When you think of Oklahoma, what do you think of? I think about college football, the New Orleans Hornets (who played most of their games in Oklahoma City this season) and the musical that shares the state's name.

I don't think about wine. Do you?

Maybe we should, there are over thirty wineries in the Sooner State, including Nuyaka Creek Winery, which is located in the town of Bristow in northeastern Oklahoma.

http://www.wellfed.net/winesediments/winesediments.php
/2006/05/12/50_in_50_1_oklahoma_nuyaka_creek_winery

Lenndevours....Merlot is not dead!




This is why I love Lenndevours.....


May 11, 2006
Friends, Merlot is Not Dead
As you may have noticed, Eric Asimov's column (and blog post) today focuses on merlot. He even mentions a locally produced bottling -- Lenz 2000 Old Vines Merlot, which I think is one of the best to be had (though pricey at $55 or so). His blog post highlights mainly California merlot, which if you ask me is like talking about the fresh seafood in Indiana.

Remember this: Merlot is not dead. She just doesn't live in California.

Read the whole thing at: http://lennthompson.typepad.com/lenndevours/

Upcoming Pennsylvania Wine Festivals and Winery Events




Here are some upcoming Pennsylvania Festivals and Winery Events for the summer mnths. Plan early and go often, and have fun!

FESTIVALS

June 24 & 25 at Split Rock Resort 15th Annual Great Tastes of PA Wine & Food Fest.
The two-day outdoor festival, held from 12 to 6pm on the grounds of Split Rock Resort located in beautiful Lake Harmony. Sample and purchase wines from around Pennsylvania. Up to 30 Pennsylvania wineries that will be featured at the event and you can tempt your taste buds with foods from a variety of vendors. Educational seminars will be held during the Festival so check them out and learn some new things about wine. Continuous musical entertainment is offered on three separate stages. Split Rock also offers a weekend package for our overnight guests. Each Festival attendee will receive a commemorative wine tasting glass, and you must be over 21 to be served.

For more information, please visit www.splitrockresort.com


August 26 & 27 at Seven Springs Mountain Resort Wine & Food Festival at Seven Springs Resort
Enjoy Pennsylvania wine, music and fantastic food at the Seven Springs Mountain Resort Wine and Food Festival. This annual event is one of the largest wine festivals in Pennsylvania, with over 20 wineries participating. Learn about wines from the educational seminars that are offered throughout the day. For further information or to make reservations, please visit www.7springs.com .


WINERY EVENTS

May 13th at Clover Hill- Breinigsville Beginner Wine & Food Class
Beginner WIne & Food Class: 1:00 - 2:30 at Breinigsville; $55 per person
Learn more about wine in a fun and casual atmosphere.
Reservations are required and classes are limited in size.
Please visit www.cloverhillwinery.com for more details.
Call (610) 395-2468 for reservations.

June 3 at Naylor Wine Cellars Summer Sounds: Spring Garden Band
Saturday, June 3, 2006 Begins our Summer Sounds events featuring the "Spring Garden Band" - The original York County Big Band, then other great Big Bands every Saturday evening from June through September, also one Friday evening per month we will be featuring Big Wheeley and The White Walls, a 50's and 60's Rock n' Roll band.
For further information, please visit www.naylorwine.com or call 1-800-292-3370.

June 4th at Naylor Wine Cellars 26th Annual Grape Blossom Festival
Sunday, June 4, 2006
Noon - 6:00pm
26th Annual Grape Blossom Festival
The whole day will offer free vineyard tours on the wagon, free guided winery tours and free wine tasting. A great selection of wine and food will be available to enjoy all day long. The connoisseur tasting will be at the wine stand for those who would like to sample the wide range of Naylor wines. For a ticket price of $10.00 you will receive a Naylor wine glass, cheese and crackers and coupons which you exchange for 1 ounce samples of our premium wines. Music will be Marlin 'Good Time Music'. Adult admission only $5.00 with a $3.00 wine credit. Ages 7 to 20 $2.00 with a $1.00 credit for candy or Jr. Slushee. Children 6 and under FREE. Please Note Spring Festival - Sunday Only!!!
For further information, please visit www.naylorwine.com or call 1-800-292-3370.

June 17th at Amore Vineyard & Blue Mountain Vnyd Buds In Bloom: Wine Tasting & Gourmet Food Tour
Date: Saturday, June 17
Registration: 10-10:30 am
Departure Time: 10:30 am
Return: approximately 5pm
Pick up location: Park and Ride Route 33 and William Penn Highway, Bethlehem Township
For details on the tour and registration, contact Sagra Cooking . 2879 Hope Ridge Drive . Easton, PA 18045 . Phone: 610-721-9608 . Email: cook@sagracooking.com

July 1st at Clover Hill Winery Clover Hill Winery Tours
Clover Hill Winery 2006 Winery Tours
Admission: $8.00 for adults;
Free for those under 21 years of age
Admission includes wine tasting and a souvenir wine glass.
Reservations are appreciated.
Please visit www.cloverhillwinery.com for more details. Call (610) 395-2468 for reservations.

July 15th at Clover Hill Winery Clover Hill Winery Tours
Clover Hill Winery 2006 Winery Tours
Admission: $8.00 for adults;
Free for those under 21 years of age
Admission includes wine tasting and a souvenir wine glass.
Reservations are appreciated.
Please visit www.cloverhillwinery.com for more details. Call (610) 395-2468 for reservations.

July 22 at Clover Hill Winery- Breinigsville Summertime White Wine & Food Class
Summertime White Wine & Food Class: 3:00- 4:30 at Breinigsville; $55per person
Learn more about wine in a fun and casual atmosphere.
Reservations are required and classes are limited in size.
Please visit www.cloverhillwinery.com for more details.
Call (610) 395-2468 for reservations.

August 12 at Clover Hill Winery- Breinigsville Sparkling Wine Class
Sparkling Wine Class: 3:00 - 4:30 at Breinigsville; $25 per person
Learn more about wine in a fun and casual atmosphere.
Reservations are required and classes are limited in size.
Please visit www.cloverhillwinery.com for more details. Call (610) 395-2468 for reservations.

August 12 at Clover Hill Winery Clover Hill Winery Tour
Clover Hill Winery 2006 Winery Tours
Admission: $8.00 for adults;
Free for those under 21 years of age
Admission includes wine tasting and a souvenir wine glass.
Reservations are appreciated.
Please visit www.cloverhillwinery.com for more details. Call (610) 395-2468 for reservations.

August 19 at Clover Hill Winery Clover Hill Winery Tour
Clover Hill Winery 2006 Winery Tours
Admission: $8.00 for adults;
Free for those under 21 years of age
Admission includes wine tasting and a souvenir wine glass.
Reservations are appreciated.
Please visit www.cloverhillwinery.com for more details. Call (610) 395-2468 for reservations.

August 19th at Clover Hill Winery- Breinigsville American Red Wine Class
American Red Wine Class: 3:00 - 4:30 at Breinigsville; $25 per person
Learn more about wine in a fun and casual atmosphere.
Reservations are required and classes are limited in size.
Please visit www.cloverhillwinery.com for more details. Call (610) 395-2468 for reservations.

August 27th at Pinnacle Ridge & Franklin Hill Just Before The Harvest: Wine & Gourmet Food Tour
The grapes are large, sweet and bursting with flavor, see them just before harvest begins
Date: Sunday, August 27
Registration: 10-10:30 am
Departure Time: 10:30 am
Return: approximately 5pm
Pick up location: Park and Ride Route 33 and William Penn Highway, Bethlehem, Township

For details on the tour and registration, contact Sagra Cooking . 2879 Hope Ridge Drive . Easton, PA 18045 . Phone: 610-721-9608 . Email: cook@sagracooking.com

Sandra Silfven, Detroit Free Press Laud Virginia Wines!!!!



Highly acclaimed Detroit Free Press and Detroit News wine writer Sandra Silfven has written a wonderful column about Viriginia Wines in her most recent wine column.

Entitled, Race for 2006 Virginia Governor's Cup shows wineries making progress, Silfven writes, "Virginia wineries are where New York’s were about five years ago – building a reputation for certain varieties and knocking on every door to get recognition for them. The vintners fight the same battle that plagues all the American wineries outside the West Coast –– they aren’t on the West Coast.

"As the second most vibrant wine industry in the East behind New York, the modern Virginia wine industry has been doing enough research and development for 25 to 30 years to figure out that Viognier, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Norton usually can ripen without disease or loss of balance from the hot, sticky climate. Other varieties of interest include Petit Verdot, Petit Mensang and the southern French varietal Tannat.


Rockbridge Vineyard in western Virginia's Shenandoah Valley.


Chris Breiner of Stone Mountain Vineyards is the winemaker of the estate founded by his father, Al Breiner.


"At this writing, the wineries were being informed of their medals, but the big winner will remain a secret until the presentation of the Virginia Cup by Gov. Tim Kaine in June.

"I found some great wines, which I hope either got gold medals or the Cup itself," wrote Silfven...here are some of her recommendations....

2005 Stone Mountain Chardonnay, grown high up in the Blue Ridge Mountains in Greene County, at an elevation of 1,700 feet. The wine has vibrant fruit, palate-cleansing acidity and a nice mineral finish. The winery gets lots of attention because of its location. Judges who visited the winery in the past described the drive there as up a rough and tumble (and scary) one-lane “road” so steep you found yourself only able to view the hood of your car. Founder Al Breiner selected the site for its gorgeous location and is famous for saying he should charge for the view and give the wine away. The Breiners have done a great job of getting the wine into Northern Virginia restaurants. At some spots I visited, it was the only Virginia wine available there. Read more about Stone Mountain.

2005 Rockbridge V d’Or dessert wine, with amazing balance from its blend of Vidal Blanc, White Riesling, Traminette and Vignoles. Owner/winemaker Shep Rouse, a Virginian who got a Master’s degree in enology at UC-Davis, worked at top properties in California and returned home in 1988. He bought a farm in northern Rockbridge County, in the Shenandoah Valley, at a higher elevation than most Virginia vineyards. This particular wine, given its name by John Curtis, co-owner of the Trellis restaurant in Williamsburg, is notable for its acidity, which gives structure to the sweet fruit. Rouse said in a phone interview that he is the only grower of Vignoles in Virginia, a varietal that has plenty of acid. He explained that the hot, humid nights in the late summer in Virginia can dilute acidity and become a problem. Rouse also makes a Riesling (amazing for Virginia) with 2 percent sugar and bottles it with a screwcap. See a Photo Tour of Rockbridge.

2002 Barboursville Malvaxia Passito, another dessert wine, with huge body and mouthfeel. This most unusual wine is a blend of Malvasia, Moscato and Vidal grapes, which are air-dried on woven mats before being gently pressed. It’s a rich, honeyed wine that could handle foie gras or rich shellfish quite nicely. Barboursville is owned by the Zonin family of Italy and is a pioneer in the modern Virginia wine industry with its founding in 1976. Claudio Salvador, now winemaker and owner of Firelands and Mon Ami in Ohio, helped build this winery. Now, with Luca Paschina as winemaker and general manager, Barboursville is a leader in the state. Learn more about Barboursville Winery.

Read about the winner of the Virginia Governor's Cup in this column next month. Check out the state's official winery Web site. Also check out the Virginia Wine Guide by the Virginia Wine and Food Society.

For her columns, go to: http://info.detnews.com/wine/columns/silfven/details.cfm
And you can write to her at: ssilfven@detnews.com

Race for 2006 Virginia Governor's Cup shows wineries making progress, by Sandra Silfven, Detroit News, Detroit Free Press, May 11, 2006

Wine Spectator Lauds New York Wine in Cover Story!!!




The Wine Spectator's cover story for May 31, 2005 is an article entitled, New York Rising by Mitch Frank, the Time magazine editor that arrived at The Wine Spectator in 2005.

In their joint letter introducing the new issue, both Marvin Shakin, Editor and Publisher, and Thomas Matthews, Executive Editor, write, "You my have visited the Rhone, the Rhine and the Russian River Valley. Now it's time to explore the vineyards of New York."

"If you'd like to explore America's next great wine region, there's no need to look to the West Coast. A quiet wine revolution is taking place back east, in the Empire State," writes Frank. "This summer, head to New York and see what all the fuss is about...."

Matthews himself reviews a large array of wines in the Tasting Notes section, and Macari, Pelligrini, Raphael, and Millbrook all rate high, among others.

I'd love to reprint the extensive and glowing article and scores, but that would be illegal. What I can tell you is that you should run to the nearest magazine shop and buy the newest issue!!!

This is a great coup for the northeast, and for New York State especially...and a wonderful homage to the thousands of poeple who work and toil in the vineyards of New York.

Congratulations to the wineries...and to us consumers!

Dominique's Blanc de Blanc Birthday



The Petersons of Swedish Hill

For my wife Dominique's birthday, my fmily and I assembled in up state New York to fete my wife, whose birthday it was. We had a busy day (more about that later), but we ended up gathered in the kitchen, friends and family, round a lovely cake and to toast my wife we opened a bottle of Swedish Hill Blanc de Blanc. It's not the most expensive wine we've ever bought. Nor the most prestigous. But in fact it hit the spot just right. It was a wonderufl capper to a great day, and a delicious and elegant way to slay our collective thirst.

Family-owned and operated by Dick and Cindy Peterson, Swedish Hill is one of the largest wineries in the region. After 20 years of growing and selling grapes to area wineries, the Petersons crushed their first grapes in 1985 and opened Swedish Hill Winery in 1986. Just 1,300 cases were produced that year; this year we produced over 60,000 cases of award-winning wines and champagnes. Swedish Hill is recognized as one of the top award-winning wineries in New York State, having won state, national and international acclaim. In 1997, the Petersons opened a second winery, Goose Watch, also on Cayuga Lake.

It has a grapey smell, mixed with a touch of yeast. It is a very smooth semi-dry champagne. The of lemons and apples defintely come through. This sparkling wine is made from the Cayuga White grape which was developed by Cornell University for the Finger Lakes Region. It has only 2.5% residual sugar. It was excellent!
The wine has won the following awards, if you don't believe me...
Gold Medal Golden Nose, 2006
Silver Medal Florida State Fair Intl, 2006
Silver Medal Finger Lakes Intl, 2006
Silver Medal San Diego Intl, 2006
Silver Medal NY Wine & Food Classic, 2005

So, Happy Birthday to my wife, Dominique DeVito...

And congratulations to the Petersons...and, if you want to celebrate something, remember, good sparkling wine doesn't always have to be brut...and it doesn't always have to be brutal on your wallet. Enjoy this fine wine whenever you get the chance!

Best wishes

Carlo

Wandering Through Virginia's Vineyards by Elliott Walker Rowe




This is a wonderful literary stroll through Virginia wine country. An enchanting little tome, and well worth your taking the time to dip into it and sip like a fine Virginia chardonnay.

According to Amazon.com:
There is a gold rush underway in Virginia. But the treasure under pursuit is not a precious metal. Rather it is a fruit, a golden-colored grape known by the odd-sounding name "Viognier" (pronounced vee-yon-nay). From Leesburg in the north down to Roanoke in the south, dot-com millionaires, celebrities, retired civil servants, and apple farmers are turning fallow pastures and orchards into row after row of European fine wine grapes.

Dave Matthews, Governor Mark Warner, Patricia Kluge, and the son of the late owner of the Washington Redskins all have broken ground on vineyards and wineries in the Charlottesville region and beyond. Leading the way almost 30 years ago, Italy’s largest winegrape growers and vintners, the Zonin family, bought the hallowed ground of the Barboursville ruins and planted the first large-scale vineyard of strictly European grapes in Virginia. Their success has inspired legions of followers.

About the Author
Walker Elliott Rowe is a freelance writer and hobby wine grape grower living in Rappahannock County, Virginia. His wine writings have appeared in Wine Business Monthly, Richmond Times Dispatch, Wine and Cuisine, The Virginia Wine Guide, The Virginia Wine Gazette, and The Rappahannock News. Rowe has spent the last three years visiting the vineyards in and around Virginia; attending seminars, meetings and training; planted his own Bordeaux, Rhône Valley, and American hybrid wine grapes; and worked for 6 months at Horton Vineyards with Mexican migrant workers to understand the craft of the winemaker and grape grower. Born in South Carolina and widely read, Walker Elliott Rowe has an understanding of the culture of the South and weaves anecdotes of the Civil War and Southern idiosyncrasies into his narrative style of writing.

Also, an interesting blog at...http://walkerrowe.com/index.html

Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Maryland Festival Season Begins!



You may find below numerous Maryland Wine Festivals for May 2006. The festival season is upon us, and many states will be offering numerous events for Mothers Day, Fathers Day, and a host of other excuses to go to your favorite winery and try the new wines available to you. Go forth, and enjoy!

May 2006
Fridays in May
Elk Run Vineyards
Wind Down Friday and Open Mike Night
6-9pm
Watch the sun set over the vineyard. Stop in and enjoy a glass of wine or tasting; take a bottle of wine home for the weekend along with local bread and cheese, musicians are welcome.

May 5
Fiore Winery
El Cinco de Mayo Mexican Celebration
1-4pm • RSVP • $
Hola amigos! Bring the family to the winery for a picnic with paella y sangria. Enjoy wine, music, and dancing.

May 6-7
Basignani Winery
Swing Into Spring
12-5pm • $
Help us welcome Spring as we release our new sweet wines. Bring a picnic and relax with your favorite wine. Desserts and wine glass included.

May 6-7, 13-14, 20-21
Berrywine Plantations / Linganore Winecellars
Dazzle Your Mom Month
Sat 10am-6pm, Sun 12-6pm • Free
Treat your Mom to three weekends of special wine tasting. Bring a picnic lunch and sample our May wine and strawberries. Tours at 12, 2 and 4pm.

May 6-7
Woodhall Wine Cellars
Paté vs. Mousse
Sat 12-4pm, Sun 12-3pm • RSVP • $
Do you know the difference? Learn about them as you sample locally available pates and mousse.

May 7
Woodhall Wine Cellars
ArtWorks at Woodhall Reception
3-6pm • Free
Each month, a different regional artist is featured at Woodhall. Join us for the opening reception.

May 13 & 14 (Mother’s Day Weekend)
Boordy Vineyards
Mother’s Day Picnic
1-5pm • $ Adults, children Free
Music by Ellis Woodward; Winetastings, Tours of the vineyard. Bring a picnic and enjoy this family weekend. Moms get a rose.

May 13-14
Elk Run Vineyards
Mothers Day High Tea and Wine Tasting
12-4pm • (two seatings) • $ • Ticketed event
Seated under tent, spend an afternoon looking over the vineyard in early bloom. Crumpets, scones, devanger cream and fine teas are presented with three Elk Run wines.

May 13
Fiore Winery
Mother’s Day Celebration and Pig Roast
1-4pm • RSVP • $
Come unwind at the winery with mom and enjoy a pig roast and dance to the music of the Mario Manoldi Italian band.

FESTIVAL: Wine In The Woods
May 21-22, Symphony Woods, Columbia

May 26
Basignani Winery
TGIF Movie Night
8-11pm • RSVP • $
Join us for a Friday night movie under the stars on a Big Screen. Bring a blanket or lawn chair and sip your favorite wine. Movie TBA.

May 27-28
Berrywine Plantations/ Linganore Winecellars
Caribbean Wine Festival
Sat 12-6pm, Sun 12-6pm • $
Features two live bands, over 25 arts and crafts vendors, food, wine tasting and guided winery tours. No pets please. Rain or shine.

May 27 & 28
Boordy Vineyards
8th Annual Wine & Herb Fest
1-5pm • $
Live music, wine tastings, vineyard wagon rides, living history encampment, spring herbs, grilled foods, handcrafted cheeses, winery tours, crafters, perennials, and more.