This wine marks the first time that winemaker Vinny Aliperti has decided to arrest fermentation instead of back-sweetening, and the results are outstanding. By picking slightly earlier than his colleagues, he allowed the grapes to maintain a crackling natural acidity.
It is generally accepted that wine growing and making originate in what is now the country of Georgia. With a few exceptions, Georgian varieties have existed in a juxtaposition of global obscurity and vast planting in the cradle of viticulture.
What remains to be seen is how cider fits in a beverage market that is increasingly saturated with craft beer and local small-production wines.
The heritage of the grapes that make our favorite wines has always been European, but will it remain so? Are there currently legitimate rivals to the vinifera monopoly that has ruled our palates? “Drink American” could be the slogan for the United States’ fairly recent class of vanguard winemakers and vintners declaring that there are.
In some ways, New York’s wine regions are ideal for making sparkling wine. The generally cool weather—combined with lake effect in the Finger Lakes and ocean breezes in Long Island—allows grapes to ripen slowly with gorgeous aromatics and natural acidity.
Though it’s a bit more expensive than most of the others, this wine is richer and beefier, with fragrant notes of almond croissants, toasted wheat bread with lemon marmalade, orange blossoms, hazelnut, and honeydew. It’s complex, slightly earthy, and well integrated, with lively bubbles and a puckering acidity.
This wine was a favorite; it’s a joy to drink. Lemon yogurt on the nose, and the flavor followed through: a flute of this wine is like a scoop of puckering lemon sorbet and a slice of cheesecake all in one. It’s focused and fresh, with lively small bubbles and prominent tartness. There’s a hint of rich pear and a delicate wisp of toasty vanilla—this wine spent three years en tirage. Pair it with a lobster roll or fragrant shrimp pad thai.