Eleven Long Island wine producers were honored today with “Best of” awards in upstate Watkins Glen at this year’s New York Wine and Food Classic, the premier event for judging New York State wines.
Not surprisingly, the North Fork took home honors for best merlot and cabernet franc, which are widely considered to be the best varietals produced on Long Island. Clovis Point in Jamesport and Kontokosta Winery in Greenport won those awards, respectively.
Wölffer Estate Vineyard in Sagaponack also continued to reap praise for its Descencia Botrytis Riesling/Chardonnay, with its 2015 vintage winning the award for the state’s best dessert wine. Last year, Wölffer’s 2012 Descencia Botrytis Chardonnay received a score of 94 points in Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate, tying Wölffer’s Diosia Late Harvest for Long Island’s highest-rated wine ever.
The competition’s two top awards, “Winery of the Year” and the “Governor’s Cup,” went to two wineries in the Finger Lakes region this year. Keuka Spring Vineyards and Billsboro Winery took home those honors, respectively.
This year is the first time since 2012 the “Winery of the Year” honor didn’t go to a North Fork vineyard. McCall Wines was named Winery of the Year in 2013, Macari Vineyards won the award in 2014 and Paumanok Vineyards received the honor in 2015.
This year’s competition included 893 New York wines, 20 hard ciders and 38 craft spirits from several regions across the state, including Long Island, Hudson Valley, the Finger Lakes, Niagara Escarpment and Lake Erie. The awards were based on blind tastings by 22 expert judges.
Here’s a complete list of Long Island winners:
Best Sparkling Wine — Sparkling Pointe Vineyards and Winery’s 2013 Brut Methode Champenoise
Best Dessert Wine — Wölffer Estate Vineyard’s 2015 Descencia Botrytis Riesling/Chardonnay
Best Unoaked Chardonnay — Lieb Cellars’ 2015 Bridge Lane Chardonnay
Best Pinot Grigio — Duck Walk Vineyards’ 2015 Pinot Grigio
Best Other Vinifera White Varietal — Palmer Vineyards’ 2015 Albarino
Best Vinifera White Blend — Bedell Cellars’ 2015 Taste White
Best Cabernet Sauvignon — Osprey’s Dominion Vineyards’ 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve
Best Merlot — Clovis Point Vineyard & Winery’s 2013 Vintner’s Select Merlot
Best Pinot Noir — Osprey’s Dominion Vineyards’ 2014 Pinot Noir
Best Cabernet Franc — Kontokosta Winery’s 2013 Cabernet Franc
Best Other Red Vinifera Varietal — Influence Wines’ 2015 Malbec
Best Vinifera Red Blend — Harbes Vineyard’s 2014 Red Blend, Proprietor’s Reserve
Best Late Harvest — Wolffer Estate Vineyard’s 2015 Descencia Botrytis Riesling/Chardonnay
Best Vinifera Sparkling White — Sparkling Pointe Vineyards & Winery’s 2013 Brut, Methode Champenoise
Best Vinifera Sparkling Pink — Sparkling Pointe Vineyards & Winery’s 2013 Topaz Imperial, Methode Champenoise