[Update: Silver Decoy Winery has since changed their name to Working Dog Winery]
Our 2012 NJ wine journey began with Silver Decoy Winery in East Windsor. My husband, Tom, my sister, Kristie and I made plans to go to this particular winery. It was a beautiful day – one of the first warm days at the end of the winter that gets you excited for spring – a perfect day for wine tasting.
When we arrived at Silver Decoy, we entered the cozy tasting room. There was daylight coming into the room from the back door and the front door. As we walked further into the room, we were warmly greeted by the fireplace glow. The fire came through a window of a wood burning stove that sits against a stone wall near the far end of the wine bar. Next to the stone wall hangs an older picture of the gentleman who is the essence of the winery, Russ, the Silver Fox. If you want to know more about this ask him when you get there. In this picture that looks like it’s from the early 80’s, Russ is displayed with a smile, a plaid flannel shirt and neatly trimmed khakis holding antlers from a recent hunting trip. Expanding off this cozy wine room is a bigger, recently renovated room with TVs, a table shuffle board game, additional barrel tables and chairs. When attending a special event at Silvery Decoy, this room is perfect to comfortably hold a larger crowd. Out the back door of the tasting room is a lovely patio with more barrel tables and chairs looking over their vines. You are welcome to walk through these vines and pick the grapes off for snacking.
When entering the tasting room, there’s a table on the right with Silver Decoy glasses displayed ready to be used for tasting. We were kindly greeted by one of the partners of the winery and told that we can pick up a glass and walk right up to the bar for a tasting. We each grabbed a glass and stepped up to the wine bar. At the bar we were greeted by Russ, my favorite person at Silver Decoy that makes this experience even better. Russ helped us sample some of our favorite wines. I started with the French Oaked Aged Chardonnay. This Chardonnay runs down smooth and buttery. I can taste the oak quality in this wine which fits well in the environment of this room. This wine is slightly sweet. There’s a good balance between the oaky-ness and the sweetness. It tastes just right for a Chardonnay. Next up, is the Ugly Duckling White. I have to say I love the Ugly Duckling bottle and label; it’s cute. As for the taste, this wine is easily enjoyable. It’s light and fruity without being too sweet. If you enjoy wines a little on the sweeter side, you’ll like this one. This wine contains a hint of honeydew. I like a glass of this one during the summer. And here’s the moment we’ve all been waiting for… the delicious Ugly Duckling Red. Tom and I always think about getting a case for us and to share. I think we’d go through it too quickly. I tell everyone about this wine and whenever friends or family visit we have them try the Ugly Duckling Red. Everyone has loved it. I really think this is the perfect wine and I’m a usually a white drinker. This wine is best slightly chilled. Even chilled there’s a slight warmth to it because of the spicy quality. Ugly Duckling Red has a great balance of sweet and spice. It’s certainly not too sweet. It’s such a treat for your taste buds. I asked what makes this wine so amazing and they said the chambourcin grape. This is a MUST TRY. I hope you like as much as we do. Next on our list is the Sangiovese. I told Kristie she HAD to try this one. If you’re a red fan, you HAVE to try this one. You’ll know this bottle by the little Italian flag on it. The Sangiovese is a grape that’s used in Chianti. Silver Decoy has used this grape in other wines, but it was so good they had to introduce it as its own wine. This wine is gently sweet. It’s not overbearing, but just right. You can tell the quality of the wine while you sip it. It’s different and delicious. I recommend trying this one. Kristie ended up buying 2 bottles. Last on the list for us this day was the Sunrise Blush. This is my favorite blush wine. My tastes have grown away from blush over the years, but if you like blush wine you will probably leave with a bottle of this. The color of this wine is beautiful and so is the bottle, but we’re not here for the labels. This wine is probably one of the sweetest of their selection, but still enjoyable. This would be a nice summer treat too. Grab a glass of this and sit outside on their patio and relax. Actually, I can say that about most of the others I’ve mentioned so far too.
My taste leans toward the sweeter side. On our next visit, which I’m sure will be soon, I’ll write about Silver Decoy’s other wines that I didn’t mention here. I look forward to sharing them with you.
I may have written more about Silvery Decoy because out of all the wineries I’ve been to in NJ, NY, PA, and VA, this one is my absolute favorite and I would recommend it to everyone. The staff is great, the ambiance is cozy and inviting, and the Ugly Duckling Red is the best wine I’ve ever had. I hope you go and enjoy your stay. Feel free to take a picture next to the picture of the Silver Fox.
5 Wine Glasses! (Out of 5)