It takes less than two months for Macari Vineyards’ Early Wine to go from vine to glass.
The Mattituck vineyard released its 2016 version, which the New York Times once called “fruit salad in a bottle,” in its tasting room on Tuesday. Perennially the first wine of the North Fork harvest to be released, it’s made from 100 percent chardonnay grapes and costs $18 a bottle.
“[It] offers green apple, lime and floral aromas,” said Macari winemaker Kelly Koch. “A slight effervescence and bright acidity keep it fresh and balanced.”
Macari harvested the fruit Sept. 12 and bottled the wine Nov. 1. It goes well with Peconic Bay scallops, which as of Monday became available at local fish markets.
“It’s always the first wine from the new vintage to hit store shelves, serving as a harbinger for Thanksgiving as well as the winter holidays,” our wine columnist Lenn Thompson wrote last year. “You really can think of it as Long Island’s white Beaujolais Nouveau — except it’s delicious.”
Originally inspired by the jungwein (“young wine”) of Macari’s consulting winemaker Helmut Gangl’s native Austria — where it is often served shortly after harvest — the Early Wine is meant as a celebration of the season and the harvest.
As for the rest of the harvest, Koch said, “Across the board the 2016 vintage was a successful one for us — we are very happy with the quality of the fruit we got from the vineyard this year. Most of the whites are just finishing up with fermentation and are offering great aromatics and flavors this year. The reds are still mid-fermentation but are showing a lot of promise.”