Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Castello di Borghese Private Reserve 2001

So, we traveled for Easter. We packed up the kids, found someone to feed the cat, we packed the car, and off we went to New Jersey for Easter. I knew when I was down there, that I would buy some local wine. Me? C'mon! While we did not have to bring food to the family gathering, we were required, as one might imagine, to brin wine.

I went down into the cellar to decide. California? France? Italy (especially with my family)? Chile? Etc? No, I decided we would have a local Easter holiday. I started hunting around for bottles. Finger Lakes? Virginia? Rhode Island? Nope, I decided on Long Island. I found a dusty old bottle worth taking a shot with - Castello di Borghese 2001 Private Reserve from the North Shore of Long Island.

This wine is from the oldest grapes on Long Island, originally founded by Alex and Louisa Hargrave. Since 1999, the first vineyard on the North Fork has been in the creative hands of Prince Marco and Princess Ann Marie Borghese, who promptly renamed it Castello di Borghese -- Castle of the Borgheses. The 2003 season marked the 30th anniversary of this founding vineyard of the Long Island wine industry. Ann Marie and Marco continue to apply new levels of energy, watching the vineyard evolve graciously under their stewardship.

Easter Sunday in New Jersey was beautiful, sunny, about 80 degrees. Couldn't have been prettier. We started the day off with some Italian cheeses, and some Hudson Valley cheeses, as well as peppers, olives, and Italian bread, followed by hame, sting beans and potatoes, we decided it was time to open the red wine. I opened the 2001 Private Reserve.

The wine was gorgeous. A blend of Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Cabernet Sauvignon, aged two years in French oak, it had a bif nose full of cherries. It also had hints of cranberry, raspberry and subtle hints of vanilla and mocha. On the palate it was fresh cherries, a hint of cassis and plum, and a hint of tomato or saddle leather. It was perfect with the sharp cheeses and the ham.

An excellent choice!

Congrats to the folks at Castello di Borghese!