CUTCHOGUE, Long Island, NY — A Hamptons winery emerged atop the field in a blind tasting sponsored by the Long Island Merlot Alliance (LIMA).
Wolffer Estate Vineyard’s 2007 Christian’s Cuvee Merlot was No. 1 among 14 merlots from the 2007 vintage, half of them from Long Island wineries, the remainder from such well-known merlot producing areas as France, California’s Napa Valley and Washington state’s Columbia Valley. Forty tasters, including wine writers, restaurateurs and retailers, did the judging.
Their rankings were based on a 100-point system. The range among all the wines was only 3.9 points, with several scoring a few tenths of a point. Wolffer Estate’s winner finished with the top score of 86.86. The remainder, in order of points scored:
2. Swanson 2007 Merlot (Oakville, Napa Valley), $29
3. Duckhorn Vineyards 2007 Merlot (Napa Valley), $55
4. Chateau La Confession 2007 (St. Emilion), $42
5. Freemark Abbey 2007 Merlot (Napa Valley), $28
6. McCall Wines 2007 Ben’s Blend (North Fork, LI), $45
7. Chateau La Fleur Cardinale 2007 (St. Emilion), $45
8. Chateau Ste. Michelle 2007 Canoe Ridge Estate Merlot (Columbia River), $25
9. (tie) Clovis Point 2007 Vintner’s Select Merlot (North Fork, LI), $32, and Long Island Merlot Alliance 2007 Merliance (Long Island), $35
11. Sherwood House Vineyards 2007 Merlot (North Fork of Long Island), $25
12. Raphael 2007 First Label Merlot (North Fork of Long Island), $42
13. Castello di Borghese 2007 Merlot Reserve (North Fork, LI), $29
14. Chateau La Croix Saint-Georges 2007 (Pomerol), $58
LIMA was founded in 2005. It joins premium wine estates committed to advancing the quality of and regard for Long Island merlot. It also produces Merliance, a cooperative blend of merlot. Its member wineries are Castello di Borghese, Clovis Point, McCall Vineyard, Raphael, Sherwood House Vineyards and Wölffer Estate.
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