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Northforker file photo
Northforker file photo

It’s official. A visit to long Island Wine Country is just as good of a getaway as a pricey Napa Valley jaunt — at least according to food, drink and travel website Thrillist, anyway.

The article, however, doesn’t focus on the quality of Long Island’s cabernet francs and merlots or the crisp, natural acidity of its sauvignon blancs. Admittedly not a wine connoisseur, writer Tony Merevick instead hones in on the experience of visiting the region.

“What I was pleased to discover — through extensive drinking and more drinking — is that Long Island wine country is just as great as Napa Valley,” Merevick wrote. “And if you think otherwise, well, you’ve probably never been to Long Island wine country, so uh, put a cork in it.”

The biggest selling point of a Long Island Wine Country visit, he said, is its easy access to New York City.

“If you’ve ever been out to the North Fork, you know that it’s a stunning rural departure from Long Island’s long highways and long strip malls, and a coastal paradise compared to NYC,” the article reads.

Other positives are its navigable size, stunning views and the atmosphere at wineries like Lieb Cellars and Kontokosta Winery.

However, the Thrillist writer did have one major gripe with Long Island wine.

“Yet, there’s one thing about Long Island wine country that pisses me off beyond belief,” the article stated. “I can’t find Long Island wines outside of Long Island.”

While recent press in publications like Wine Spectator and The Wine Advocate surely raise the region’s profile among serious wine drinkers, an article like this from Thrillist can put Long Island wine of the radar of your everyday, wine-loving New York City residents.

So that’s pretty cool.

But although the article is overwhelmingly flattering, it clashes with the message that some industry leaders are trying to put out there: that Long Island wine deserves attention for its superior products and not for agritainment.

As our wine columnist put it, “It has to be about the wines and their quality if this region is to succeed longer term.”

Plus, he said, Napa is probably not the most appropriate comparison.
“And any comparisons to Napa are straight out of the 1990s,” he said. “No one thinks of Napa as the Mecca anymore.”

You can read the full article here.