We were there during the week of Leib Family Cellars Oysterfest, which is a promotion they run on Saturdays in April. However, since it was a weekday, we missed the oysters.
Gary is a great guy. He showed us around the facilities, and let us taste a few wines. But more importantly, Gary is involved. Through his efforts, they have several wines that they sell which are tied to charities. A portion of each of sales of their 2005 Syrah, imprinted with a picture of Gary’s late shepherd, goes to help with a local animal organization. And he also has another tied to a local breast cancer foundation. Gary was also recently tied into the Three Sisters Project, which traded and poured wines form other regions of New York. He’s a very proactive general manager.
We tasted three wines: Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay and the 2005 Syrah.
The Pinot Blanc was lovely, with a wonderful flowery nose, and a lovely citrusy ending. It was light, bright, fresh, clean and delicious.
The Chardonnay is a lovely dry white wine that smells of fresh greens apples of front, with a touch of melon and honey. The taste again is light and bright, with excellent balance and acidity. I’m not a huge chardonnay fan, but I love the Lieb Family Cellars Chardonnay. I think it’s one of the best on the North Fork.
And last was the Lieb Family Cellars Syrah. This had lots of beautiful stewed dark fruits – plums, dark raspberries, dark cherries – and a lovely mouthfeel. This is a big fruit up front wine, with lot’s of fruit up front. But it’s approachable too. It’s tannins don’t bite, instead it’s lush and soft and delicious, with a hint of vanilla and plum at the end. Really, a lovely dry red.
Lieb is doing some wonderful things.