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Monday, October 22, 2012

Shaw Vineyard Autumn Taste Extravaganza


Last week I attended the Shaw Vineyard Autumn Tasting Extravaganza downtown in Tribeca. Founded in 2002, Shaw Vineyard operates on the western shore of the seneca lake upstate and grows most of its own grapes and sources the remainder from the highest-quality Finger Lakes growers.

Among the participants in the tasting were Tia Walker, David Barish Adena Geiger as well as quite a few bloggers and chroniclers of nightlife and the scene. The rainy evening was offset by the complex, dry, yeasty -- in the best possible way -- 2008 Reisling, among the first wines that attendees tasted. The wines, it seemed to me, were presented in varying degrees of complexity by Mr. Shaw. The 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon, by contrast to the first wine, was crisp, velvety and sweet. But the Riesling made a stronger, actually the strongest impression upon me -- aren't Rieslings supposed to be sweet? -- but both were noteworthy. The 2008 Reserve Pinot Noir had, of course, a richer flavor, was almost Sherry-like (and that, to me, is good). The 2010 Pinot Grigio was on the sweeter side of the spectrum, with a floral, almost fruity bouquet. The 2011 Savignon Blanc was young and fun and a bit tawny.

Among the harder stuff, the Barbados Cockspur rum was standout, absolutely excellent -- absolutely pure sipping, molasses based. I have had a few excellent rums from Barbados, but nothing like this. Also standout among the harder liquors was the 25-year old Maison Comandon Cognac, complex, seductive and tasting of high seriousness. Diablito Mezcal, from Mexico, had the characteristic smoky notes offset by welcome suggestions of vanilla.

Thanks to the Shaw's for a great evening. And get thee to that fantastic 2008 Riesling -- shnell!

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