Monday, July 21, 2014

McGregor Vineyards Reds - Unique and Still Strong (NY)

 
So, I was at the Finger Lakes Wine Festival 2014, and I thought to myself that I really should check out McGregor, because I am jonesing for a good red. And I think of McGregor as one of the better red producers in the region. The grapes they grow are a little funky, but hey, I'm a wine geek, so they are right up my alley.  The first one I tried was the Pinot Noir 2009. It was holding up beautifully from my first tasting in 2012.  I LOVED the estate 2009 Pinot Noir. It’s very light in its color extraction and flavors. Almost a dark rose’. But it was wonderful. Bright cherry and raspberry spill out of the glass, couched in vanilla and spice. A wonderful, lean, crisp bright red wine. I loved it!

 
I also tried the 2010 Black Russian Red – 30 Month Barrel Reserve. This is the wine at the heart of all the fuss. This wine is so famous Evan Dawson devoted a whole chapter to it in his book, Summer In A Glass. At what point is the wine hype versus great wine, in my mind? was what I wondered in 2012. In 2014 I can tell you I am a fan!
 
The wine is made with Saperavi and Sereksiya grapes. Saperavi (Georgian:
საფერავი; literally "paint, dye" - due to its intensive dark-red colour) is an acidic, teinturier-type grape variety native to Georgia, where it is used to make many of the region's distinctive wines, along with the Alexandreuli and Rkatsiteli varieties. Leaves are 3-lobed, large, and roundish. Berries are medium to large, elliptic, dark bluish, and thin-skinned; with a maturation period of approximately 5 months and moderate productivity. It has the potential to produce high alcohol levels, and is used extensively for blending with other lesser varieties. It is the most important grape variety used to make Georgian red wines. Saperavi is a hardy variety, known for its ability to handle extremely cold weather; and is popular for growing in high altitude and inland regions. It is a teinturier grape, containing the red anthrocyanin within the grape pulp as well as the skin; and is unusual in being one of very few such grapes used in single-varietal winemaking (most are used in small amounts, strictly for blending).
 
Sereksiya is also known as Băbească Neagră, which is an old native Romanian - Moldovan wine grape variety. It is cultivated in the south of Moldova and in Romania (region of Moldavia, Dobruja and Wallachia), and is the second most planted grape variety in Romania, with about 6,300 hectares (16,000 acres) in 2005. The name Băbească Neagră means "grandmother's grape". Wines made solely from Băbească Neagră are light, fruity red wines.
 
This blend is an estate wine aged in American oak. It has big fruit up front and big oak. Blackberry, cherry, plum, cocoa, and eucalyptus all came through, again! There was also  some vanilla and some spices. This was a big, dark, deep, red wine. Loved it!!!