My name is Carlo DeVito, and I am the author of East Coast Wineries: A Complete Guide from Maine to Virginia published by Rutgers University Press. This blog is dedicated to primarily east coast wines and wineries including Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia. It will also feature products and information from other regions.
By HOWARD G.
April 26, 2013 New York Times
Few vegetables are tougher to match with wine than green
asparagus, which is synonymous with spring. My go-to white for the job is
sauvignon blanc, because its characteristic aromas and flavors — commonly
called green, herbal, herbaceous or vegetal — echo those of asparagus.
Many Long Island producers offer sauvignons, and the 2012s
have begun to enter the market.
My preferred preparation of asparagus at home involves
poaching and serving the stalks with slightly browned butter or olive oil and
lemon. The idea is to keep things simple; too much complexity can overly
complicate, if not defeat, a wine-and-asparagus match. If you want to add a
complementary ingredient, sprinkle bits of tangy goat cheese over the cooked
stalks, as chefs in the Loire Valley of France do.
I tasted five East End sauvignons, all 2012s, last week.
Each was distinctive; all were awash in fresh acidity, which clears the palate
while whetting the appetite. Steady chilling kept them brisk on the palate.
The vividly flavorful, grassy sauvignon ($15) from Osprey’s
Dominion Vineyards in Peconic was the closest match to cooked asparagus. This
winning wine was round and full-bodied.
The almost plush sauvignon ($23) from Macari Vineyards in
Mattituck, a personal favorite for many vintages, had a rewardingly rich
fruit-salad flavor redolent of Granny Smith apples, with hints of lime.
Raphael in Peconic makes two usually stylish sauvignons. The
regular, complex version ($20) had a particularly inviting, slightly smoky
aroma and a generous, earthy flavor. The First Label sauvignon ($26) was lean,
piquant, graceful and subtle.
The lightest sauvignon in the group was the perfumed,
just-released one ($19.99) from Palmer Vineyards in Riverhead. Its delicacy
implied versatility, so after the asparagus it accompanied baked Tasmanian sea
trout. The combination clicked.
Seven Pinots to Pair With Duck By HOWARD G. GOLDBERG Published: April 12, 2013 New York Times
Many red wine lovers consider pinot noir and duck an ideal
combination. And many fans of duck think the white Pekin breed farmed on Long
Island is America’s best. That’s where East End pinot noir producers come in.
But there are only a few. The simplest explanation for that
lies in pinot’s nickname: the heartbreak grape. It is notoriously difficult to
grow successfully, and its wine can be unpredictable. In Suffolk County,
long-established reds — merlot, cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon — cause
growers less worry.
When Louisa and Alex Hargrave, pioneers of Long Island’s
wine industry, founded the Hargrave Vineyard in Cutchogue 40 years ago, they
planted pinot noir. In 1999, they divorced and sold their estate. The new
owners renamed it Castello di Borghese Vineyard, and kept pinot noir as a
highlight of their wine roster.
All of the seven pinots tasted last week would complement
the dark meat and crisp skin of rotisserie-cooked, oven-roasted, grilled or
smoked duck, as well as braised duck legs, pan-seared duck breast with a fruit
sauce and duck with black pepper.
The star was the sophisticated 2010 Corchaug Estate reserve
($60) from McCall Wines in Cutchogue, which specializes in the grape; its
combined breadth, depth and length was world-class (as its price might
suggest). McCall’s regular 2010 Corchaug Estate ($39), almost as serious, was
round and plummy.
Close behind was the sultry, fat and assertive 2009 Sarah’s
Hill pinot ($39.95) from Jamesport Vineyards, in Jamesport. The 2008 Sarah’s
Hill ($39.95) was bright and, pleasingly, slightly funky.
The versatile 2010 pinot ($28.99) from Martha Clara
Vineyards, in Riverhead, was spicy and near-sweet. Castello di Borghese’s
lightweight 2008 ($28.99), made in a basic Burgundy style, was easy-drinking.
And the amiable, refreshing 2009 reserve pinot ($30) from Laurel Lake
Vineyards, in Laurel, was redolent of black cherry and slightly smoky.
For maximum enjoyment, these wines should be decanted at
least an hour before being served.
The Drink Local Wine 2013 wine conference is over. Two
mightily packed days of fun and information all downloaded with a glass of wine
or two. Of course, Maryland wine was the big winner. It was the recipient of
much love and affection, and rightfully so. It was an absolute triumph for
Kevin Atticks and his crowd. The wines, for the most part, showed beautifully
And what really shown was that Kevin and his marketing team have the message
and the showcasing well in hand. And the winemakers are growing in number, and
making better wine than ever before.
But for me one of the really fantastic moments was a small
one a lot of other people ignored. When Robert Deford was on stage talking
about the history, the legacy of Maryland wine. He mentioned all the appropriate
Robert Deford of Boordy Vineyards
Bob has been at the head of Maryland’s oldest and largest
winery for 33 years. He has over seen a massive transformation. He has been at
the forefront of conservation and sustainability. But he’s also been deeply
engrossed in fighting the legal system in Maryland that held sway for a long
time, and really proved to be the barrier for the state’s wine business.
Bob said that Maryland wine had come a long way during his
tenure. And he had four “legs” that Maryland winemakers had identified as being
key to turning around their industry.
1.Science and research were key. Without these,
winemaking was still in the dark ages, and quality would never improve.
or organization of the wineries was key. You could fight like family behind
closed doors, but when you went out side, everybody had to smile and be on the
3.The wineries needed a political voice. The laws
were set up to prevent the wine industry from growing, and it took a lot of
political wrangling to get the state onboard with growing the wine business as
an extension of the agratourism movement.
4.Last was that he industry had to learn how to
market their wine together.
No matter if your wine industry is in Maryland or Kalamazoo,
these legs are all super important. But more importantly, Deford had an
epiphany at the conference, when he realized that 2001 was a watershed year for
Kevin Atticks with Sarah O'Herran of Black Ankle
That was the year the Maryland Wine Organization hired Kevin
Atticks and Joe Fiola. Kevin Atticks took care of the marketing. He’s smart,
savvy, funny, and has a sharp, light footed marketing team around him. Atticks
has helped promote the industry by promoting festivals, trails, and awards.
He’s done a great job being cheerleader to a winning team. Attick’s troopers
know twitter, facebook, and keep the media going at all times, sending out
electronic news letters to wine writers, and parading a steady stream of
successful wineries out every month of the year.
The other accomplishment was in hiring the winemaking-est
Wine Prof on the east coast, Joe Fiola. Fiola’s arrival, like that of Mark
Chien in Pennsylvania, created the chain reaction Deford was talking about. Fiola is an odd hybrid of Extension expert (he
can assist in site selection, planting selection, and vineyard planning) as
well as a master winemaker (he makes more experimental wines, with more
practical applications than any other wine prof on the east coast). He is
These two combined hirings amounted to a watershed moment in
Maryland wine. One helped create the best practices for vineyard management and
winemaking, and the other for promoting the accomplishments of the industry.
I thought this was an important thing to impart. It’s the
kind of thing that gets lost…that a region…and wine start in the same place.
I was Eastern Wineries Exposition 2013 in Lancaster, PA,
tasting at the opening evening gala. Wines from all over the east coast were
there, especially Pennsylvania and the north east. As I was going through the
tables, I saw a bottle that intrigued me. Reid’s Orchard Zin on the Skins.
Reid's Orchard & Winery is located in beautiful and
historic Buchanan Valley, in Adams County, Pennsylvania, which was settled by
pioneers as early as 1750.It was here
in Buchanan Valley that young Mary Jemison, the White Squaw, was taken from her
family during a tribal raid on white settlers.She came to be known as the White Squaw and spent the rest of her years
living with her captors.St. Ignatius of
Loyola Church, the Catholic Church in Buchanan Valley, is also referred to as
the White Squaw Mission.
This farm was originally settled back in the 1850's by
descendants of the Hall family.The
smoke of muskets and cannons, as well as the sound of the battle itself,
infiltrated the peace of this valley and this farm during those three horrible
days in Gettysburg during the Civil War.Over the years, parcels of land were broken off from the original tract
and put to various uses.
Dave Reid purchased one of these tracts from June and Donald
Hall in November, 1976.Eventually we
recovered three other tracts of the original farm and now farm 100 acres of the
original tract in this historic valley.
Our farm's soil type is unique within Adams County,
classified as Highfield Channery loam, and possesses many of the same desirable
characteristics of the soil found in some of the best and most productive areas
of farmland in France.
Reid's Orchard & Winery is our family owned and operated
fruit farm and winery located in beautiful Buchanan Valley, Pennsylvania.
Reid's Orchard came into existence in November 1976 when
Dave purchased the home farm. Since that time, Dave’s family has grown and so
has his farm! From the beginning they have direct marketed their produce at
farmers' markets in the Baltimore, Washington, D.C., and Northern Virginia
area. In addition to our more traditional plantings we also have a large
selection of heirloom apples and tomatoes.
In March 2009, they opened the doors to our winery tasting
room and began doing business as Reid's Orchard & Winery. They are on the
Mason-Dixon Wine Trail that weaves through the Pennsylvania/Maryland border. In
addition to their farmers' markets, Ried’s Orchards now have two winery tasting
rooms - the Winery Tasting Room at the Home Farm and the Winery Tasting Room at
Jennie's House in Gettysburg, the historic birthplace of Jennie Wade, the only
civilian killed during those three days of battle in Gettysburg.
Dave and his family have a belief in stewardship of the
land. “Reid's Orchard & Winery farms with the knowledge that we are
stewards of the land. The land that we farm today is land that has been farmed
by the generations that came before us. The land that we farm today is ours to
cultivate and nurture for the time we are here. The land that we farm today
will be farmed by those generations who choose to follow us as farmers and
vintners. As responsible stewards, we make choices in land and crop management
based not only on the needs of this year's crop but also considering the
long-term effects of our decisions on the land and on the environment.”
According to K.L. Sullivan in The Wine Traveler, “Reid
believes that the wines in this region of Pennsylvania have the potential to be
the best in the state. Reid produces red, white and fruit wines. Some of these
include Chardonnay, Vidal Blanc, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Strawberry,
Cherry, Peach and Blueberry. We visited at a time when the winery tasting room
was closed and only one wine was available for tasting. Troika was a blend of
Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Syrah. This ruby colored wine offered dark fruit
notes including blackberries and plums. The fruit yielded to earthy tones with
So, I gave the wine a pour. This was a nice big, round wine.
Obviously made fromZinfandel, it was a
nice medium-bodied red, with some big dark cherry and plum and raspberry up
front. Good balance of acids and tannins. Very, very drinkable. A really,
really pleasant surprise!
Schildknecht: Oregon is Exhibit A of issues that can arise
with naming regions
Paul Vigna | firstname.lastname@example.org ByPaul Vigna | email@example.com
April 17, 2013 at 8:55 PM, updated April 18, 2013 at 7:32 AM
David Schildknecht of The Wine Advocate answered a question
last week about wine regions and when they are established with a long email
that as much addressed developments on the West Coast as in the mid-Atlantic,
which is what I had asked about. His answer likely will find a far more
interested audience among those in the industry than those buying the wines.
Since that group makes up some of my readers, here's a portion of
Schildknecht's response that wasn't published earlier this week:
"Mid-Atlantic" strikes me as pretty broad and
bland for generating excitement or evoking a sense of place. At the other
extreme though, I fear that the A.V.A. system -- while its being essentially an
invitation to name and fill empty vessels has the advantage of flexibility
--inevitably tends toward fragmentation
and proliferation so that few if any Eastern U.S. A.V.A.s are likely to include
enough wineries such that a critical mass for recognition based on those whose
wines are qualitatively exceptional could be reached.
"In regard both to what regional wine names can
be(come) evocative for Americans and the influence of A.V.A.s, the situations
in Oregon and Washington -- which I have been observing more closely on the
ground over the last 12 months - are quite revealing.
"The overall takeaway then is both clear and important,
even if I regrettably don't know how to express these issues more concisely and
need to rely on examples from parts of the U.S. that are further along in
achieving national or international recognition for their wines: There's no
point trying to decide by fiat what will count as vinous regional identity.
Rather, that will emerge as critical mass of vinous excellence and its glimmers
of recognition emerges, at which point accidents of geography, politics and
nomenclature are going to be the determining factors.
"Eventually, I am convinced, there will be many more
outstanding wines grown in the Eastern U.S. than there are now, and some of
those who already grow outstanding wine will, if they can hold on economically,
receive widespread recognition for the quality of their wines and by
implication the potential quality of their respective regions. But how
inclusive these regions will be, how their lines of demarcation will be drawn,
and what they will be called, it isn't yet possible to say or even sensibly
Drink Local Wine held its fifth annual conference April 13, 2013 in Baltimore, at the Tremont Suites Hotel and Camden Yards. The conference featured Maryland wines. The state’s industry is one of the fastest growing in the country, and its 61 wineries are almost 50 percent more than in 2010.
The state’s four growing regions allow it to produce a variety of wines, including the classic European varietals but also some that are distinctly New World in style. The Maryland Winery Association is the conference’s primary sponsor.
“We’re growing a world of wine styles and varieties throughout Maryland, and we’re excited to share them through Drink Local Wine,” says Kevin Atticks, the Maryland Wine Association’s executive director.
Maryland’s modern wine history dates to the 1970s, but grapes have been planted in the area since the 17th century. Most of the state’s wineries are in the Piedmont Plateau in central Maryland, but grapes also thrive in the Eastern Shore, Southern Plain, and Western Mountains.
DLW 2013 followed the success of the first four conferences — in Dallas featuring Texas wine in 2009, in Loudoun County featuring Virginia wine in 2010, in St. Louis featuring Missouri wine in 2011, and in Denver featuring Colorado wine in 2012. DLW also holds an annual Regional Wine Week, in which wine bloggers, writers and columnists from the U.S. and Canada write about their favorite regional wines, ranging from Ontario to New York to Florida to Texas to Colorado.
More media and bloggers attended the Maryland DW 2013 than any previous conference. It was a tremendous success for both DLW and a great coming out party for the new Maryland wine scene.
Lenn Thompson from the New York Cork Report
Dave McIntyre of the Washington Post with one of the owners of Sugar Loaf Mountain
Owners and staff of Sugarloaf Mountain Vineyards, the first stop on the tours.
Blogger Frank Morgan and Black Ankle Vineyard co-owner Ed Boyce. The second stop was Black Ankle Vineyards.
Dave White, Andrew Stover
Michael, Katie, Richard and Dezel
Dave McIntyre, and Ed Boyce and Sarah O'Herran of Black Ankle
Sarah with Kevin Atticks, Exec. Dir. Maryland Wineries Assoc.
Katie and Richard
Bob Deford, Boordy Vineyards
Mike and Rose Fiore, of Fiore Winery
The folks from Serpent Ridge Winery
Bert Basinagni speaking to the assembled.
Joe Fiola of Western Maryland Univ.
Robert Deford talking at the seminars
DLW 2013 included a Grand Tasting and Twitter Taste-off of Maryland wines, featuring two dozen of the state’s best wineries, on April 13.