Sunday, September 27, 2009

Brotherhood Winery New York Riesling NV

A friend of mine went to New York on business recently, so I asked him to try and get some New York wine. Wine has been made in New York for almost 400 years, and some of it is apparently pretty good.

I mentioned Finger Lakes Riesling, because while knowing pretty much nothing about New York wine, I had heard that something resembling that had won some sort of medal/competition. However, my friend brought back this instead - what appears to be a non-vintage wine is a blue glass bottle. Basically, instead of discovering the Dr. Loosen of New York, he found the Blue Nun of New York.

Brotherhood is apparently "America's oldest winery". I don't know if this wine is the same one advertised on their website - the label looks different (this one says "New York" in big letters on the top) and I'm not really sure what's going on with the vintage. There is no vintage declared on the label, which leads me to assume it's a non-vintage wine. The wine itself isn't great - it's extremely fruity, ripe to the point of it tasting like rotten fruit. Not a lot in the way of complexity either. Some sweetness, which is fine but coupled with the overripe fruit taste it's a bit too much. Jon said this wine was 2 for $30 (US). That is, quite frankly, an enormous rip-off for a wine of this quality.

It would be nice if I had a bit more information about this. I love trying wines from different regions. This winery seems like it's a relic. They produce wines with names such as "Burgundy" and "Chablis" and "Sauterne". I'm sure that was fine 100 years ago, or even 30 years ago, but get with the times please. New York is a proper wine region in its own right - why sell wines under these fake French monikers? I'm sure this winery has a loyal following, and every one's happy with everything just how it is, but it could only help the image of New York wine to promote its own, unique identity.

New York Riesling NV
Washingtonville, New York

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