Jones von Drehle Vineyards 2014 Rosa Dia

The plans for my 2015 Rosé report are coming along nicely, with wines from wineries all across the east coast (defined for the tasting wineries not in California, Oregon or Washington). This year’s tasting will have wines not only from various New York regions, but also Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, Michigan and North Carolina. The response has been humbling. Truly. My tasting report will focus on 2015 wines, but some wineries have sent me 2014 rosé as well, including  Jones von Drehle Vineyards 2014 Rosa Dia ($18). Jones von Drehle is a relatively new producer in the Yadkin Valley AVA in North…

Billsboro Winery 2012 Cabernet Franc

Billsboro Winery 2012 Cabernet Franc ($25) is ripe and fruit-forward on the nose with cherry and plum aromas that stay this side of jammy and accents of tobacco, baking spice and dried herbs. The first sip is a bit disjointed and almost comes across as hot (an indicator of higher alcohol that isn’t balanced) but with some air that fades and this medium-bodied, ripe-but-not-too-ripe red settles in with red and black fruit notes that are tinged by toasty vanilla oak-born spice and a bit of brown sugar. Structure is provided by juicy acidity rather than the tannins, which are soft and rounded. On…

Wolffer Estate 2012 “Christian’s Cuvee” Merlot

Sometimes, I just don’t want to talk about how much a wine costs. With Long Island wines already seen as over-priced by many and the ever-rising prices of Finger Lakes wines, it’s a topic that I cover enough already. I can’t tell you if Wolffer Estate 2012 Christian’s Cuvee Merlot ($100) is worth that $100 price tag or not. That’s really between you and your bank account. What I can tell you that I’ve bought it before — though admittedly not often — and that I’ve had the pleasure of drinking these wines back to the 2000 vintage and these…

Roanoke Vineyards 2012 Gabby’s Cabernet Franc

Roanoke Vineyards 2012 Gabby’s Cabernet Franc ($43) shows the ripeness of the vintage, but is a standout for its elegant intensity and early complexity. A blend of cab franc grown in a part of Roanoke’s estate vineyard known as “Gabby’s rows” because Pisacano family patriarch Gabby Pisacano manages them along with 17% merlot and 1% petit verdot, it offers a spicy and slightly herbal – in a good way – nose with layers of sweet black cherry and blackberry with subtle but distinct minty-licorice notes and high-toned floral aromas. Pretty and fresh on the medium-bodied palate, mixed berries lead the way…

Domaine LeSeurre 2012 Semi Dry Cuvee Classique Riesling

As you may remember from my recent post, I don’t write reviews based on at-winery tastings. I do use those tastings to help identify wines that I want to taste again or learn more about. Such is the case with Domaine LeSeurre 2013 Semi Dry Cuvee Classique Riesling ($19). My visit to the tasting room over the summer was a bit of a let down. It was too warm in the tasting room, leaving the reds well above cellar temperature. The glassware was small and weighty — the kind of glass you expect at a wine-tasting festival perhaps, but not at…

Billsboro Winery 2012 Pinot Noir

Billsboro Winery 2010 Pinot Noir ($25) offers aromas of black cherry sprinkled with potpurri, root beer and smoke and toasted oak that is just a little distracting. The fresh, nicely concentrated palate brings more cherries — black and maraschino — a bit of chocolate and subtle. It’s less oaky than the nose and has soft, supple tannins and a nice bit of juicy acidity. Producer: Billsboro Winery AVA: Finger Lakes ABV: 12.5% Price: $25 (sample) (3 out of 5, Very good/Recommended)