Archive for August, 2013

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We recently attended our very first virtual wine tasting (Virtual Vines) and it was awesome. I commend Old York Cellars for being so progressive and bringing the tasting experience to your home. After all, when we buy wines, they will be consumed at home or with friends and family, so why not do a tasting in the comfort of your living room or kitchen.

This live, interactive, online, tasting session with their wine maker, Scott Gares, included a bottle of Chardonnay, a bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon, 6 chocolates from Laurie’s Chocolates, and dinner pairing suggestions. Tom cooked up wild mushroom ravioli with tomato sauce  (not one of the suggestions), we poured ourselves glasses of wine, and tuned in to the live stream from Old York Cellars.

We started with the Chardonnay. Here’s what the vintner had to say:

NJ provides growing conditions similar to France which is why quality Chardonnay grapes are harvested at Old York Cellars. This particular Chardonnay was bottled in September and for about a year since then. The wine gets softer while sitting, which is how it avoids “bottle shock”. The just released Chardonnay smells of the American Oak that’s used in the fermenting process. It’s easy going, gives more nose, and is soft on the palette. The taste is apple on the finish, buttery, medium oak, and not overpowering. The wine felt soft and light. The oaky quality seemed mild to me. If you take a breath over the Chardonnay on your tongue, the oak flavor releases more. I also felt that the wine tingled a bit on my tongue, but that might have been just me, since no one else mentioned it during the session. Lighter foods were recommended with this wine since light food pairs well with lighter wine. Laurie’s Chocolates caramel milk chocolate went well with the Chardonnay.

We tried the Cabernet Sauvignon next:

The”king of the red grapes,” Cabernet, started in Bordeaux. Now, it’s grown and finished at Old York Cellars’s where they grow, crush, press, and age the wine. Old York Cellars’s approachable Cabernet Sauvignon is well balanced in fruit and alcohol. The tannins and mild acidity give the Cabernet a good back bone. I don’t typically enjoy reds. When we do drink them, we usually serve it slightly chilled, which isn’t really advisable. We loved it, it was really good. I think it was even better than their 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon. Last year’s growing conditions may have enhanced the flavor. They had a later harvest because of all the rain we received in NJ. Like the Chardonnay, their Cabernet Sauvignon was also bottled in September. To me, the Cabernet Sauvignon gave off aromas of Fall. It was fruity at first with a cherry quality and a slight tobacco taste on the finish. They recommended tasting this wine with Laurie’s Chocolates truffles. In addition to some other dishes, they said this wine goes well with fuller body cheeses. I enjoyed the Cab with our mushroom ravioli.

Old York Cellar’s next Virtual Vines Online Wine Tasting will be on November 14th. Keep track of Old York Cellars’s wine events at NJ Wine with Me or on their website at www.oldyorkcellars.com/events.



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