Wine Recommendation
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Wine Recommendation

Wolffer Estate Vineyard

2001 Premier Cru Merlot
(Hamptons Long Island)

Wolffer's Premier Cru is 100% Merlot made with grapes from their oldest vines (planted in 1990) on their steepest slopes, ensuring good drainage. Ocean breezes also protect the vines from cold snaps, allowing them to ripen fully into November.

Through a time-consuming, hands-on process, the grapes were hand picked, hand sorted and any stems that slipped past the de-stemmer were also plucked out, leaving only the best fruit. The juice spent 28 days on the skins and the wine was moved to 100% French oak for almost 20 months.

Only 283 six-bottle cases were produced (750ml) along with 96 375ml bottles, 24 magnums and seven three-liter bottles.

Eyes: Deep crimson/ruby with tinges of purple. Almost inky.

Nose: Complex and layered with rasberry, blackberry and tobacco. Even a touch floral. It changed with every sniff (over the course of a few hours), with fruit coming forward as time went on.

Tongue: California is known for "big" Cabernet Sauvignon and this is a "big" Merlot. Concentrated with a rich, full mouthfeel the palate offers full, but smooth tannins (given the 100% new oak cooperage), more berries and a faint mineral/lead pencil note toward the end that gives it a Bordeaux twist. The finish is War and Peace long, lingerly nicely on the back of my tongue with a subtle sweet spice...think cinnamon.

Price: $125

Reviewed December 8, 2004 by Lenn Thompson.


The Wine

Winery: Wolffer Estate Vineyard
Vintage: 2001
Wine: Premier Cru Merlot
Appellation: Hamptons Long Island
Grape: Merlot

Review Date: 12/8/2004

The Reviewer

Lenn Thompson

Lenn Thompson writes about New York wines for Dan's Papers,
Long Island Press, Long Island Wine Gazette, Edible East End
and Two words describe his taste in wine — balance and nuance. Lenn prefers food-friendly, elegant wines to jammy, over-extracted fruit bombs and heavy-handed oak. When reviewing, Lenn tastes each wine three times — alone right after opening, with food, and again the next day — believing that 90-second reviews are unrealistic and not how the average person enjoys wine.