04/18/19 6:00am

It’s fitting that one year after our cover story about the evolution of Long Island winemaking, our latest issue marks several more changes within the local wine industry. In the above podcast, our staff discusses some of the bigger changes.

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10/02/17 6:01am

Charolais cattle at McCall Vineyards and Ranch in Cutchogue. (Credit: Connor Harrigan/McCall courtesy photo)

The white Charolais cows that roam McCall Ranch’s 40 acres are unlike traditional American cows. They are leaner, devoid of spots and stark white. According to the men and women who work with them, the cows nuzzle up against people, the way dogs do. (more…)

09/29/17 6:01am

Rex Farr at his Calverton farm on Monday, Aug. 14, 2017. (Credit: Randee Daddona)

It’s a mid-August morning at The Farrm in Calverton, which means the cows and burros must be fed and the tomatoes and peppers inspected for ripeness. But it’s also a fruit day, according to the biodynamic calendar, which means the not-yet-ripe grapes are about to get some attention.

So first, farmer Rex Farr has to create a vortex. (more…)

09/28/17 5:59am

A bottle of Bedell Cellars merlot. (Credit: Randee Daddona)

Narrowing down the nearly two cases of merlot tasted for this story into a Long Island merlot “six-pack” was incredibly difficult. Nearly every wine was worthy of inclusion.

Ultimately, these choices cover a wide range of what is available, mixing some more-affordable options in with some of the region’s best. (more…)

09/28/17 5:57am

merlot

Vineyard workers at Lenz Winery harvest merlot grapes in 2016. (Credit: Krysten Massa)

Look out the window the next time you find yourself on the East End. If you see grapevines, there’s a fair chance they are merlot, which makes up nearly 30 percent of the total grape plantings on Long Island. Roughly 700 acres of local vineyards are dedicated to merlot, making it the most-planted red grape variety. Its dominance is on full display in local tasting rooms, too, where you’ll find merlot bottled by itself, as well as in many red blends, rosés — and a few wineries even use it in sparkling wine production.

The importance of merlot to the local wine industry simply cannot be overstated. It is a workhorse for the region while also leading to some of its most lauded and adored wines. (more…)