11/18/16 6:00am
Macari Vineyards 2016 Early Wine

A bottle of Macari Vineyards 2016 Early Wine. (Credit: Lenn Thompson)

The third Thursday in November, which was yesterday, is kind of a big deal in the wine world. It’s Beaujolais Nouveau Day, when, under French law, the new batch of Beaujolais Nouveau is released at 12:01 a.m., just weeks after the gamay grapes used to make it were picked.

In France — particularly in the Beaujolais region — it’s a day celebrated with festivals, fireworks and much revelry. Here in the United States, you’ll probably find stack after stack of the stuff at your local wine shop.

Though it’s a fun concept, a very-early taste of the new vintage just in time for Thanksgiving, most of the wine is mediocre or worse. There are some good ones, but they are harder to find and aren’t worth chasing down.

Don’t bother. Pick up a bottle (or six) of our wine of the week: Macari Vineyards 2016 “Early Wine” Chardonnay. (more…)

11/19/15 6:26am
A bottle of Macari Vineyard's 2015 Early Wine. (Credit: Lenn Thompson)

A bottle of Macari Vineyard’s 2015 Early Wine. (Credit: Lenn Thompson)

Over the time that I’ve written about Long Island wines, I’ve gained a reputation as someone who doesn’t like chardonnay. Actually, “gained” isn’t the right word. I’ve earned it. But the truth is, there is plenty of chardonnay that I like – just very little of it is made locally. I drink Chablis – French chardonnay made in a region of the same name – and I’ve recently discovered some California chardonnay that I enjoy as well. Look for the Lioco label. You’ll thank me later.

But most Long Island chardonnay falls flat for me. Many of the barrel-fermented editions are just too oaky – or as a friend of mine says “they aren’t over-oaked, they are under-wined.” They are flat or lifeless or just not distinctive. That’s perhaps the biggest crime – lack of distinct Long Island character. Many of them could be made anywhere. (more…)