Monday, May 10, 2010

Harpersfield Vineyard “Les Reves” (Dreams) Chardonnay

Heading back from a Geneva wine conference recently wesunset funnel cloud 2 decided that there was time to visit one winery before returning to the Toledo area. I exited and headed toward Ferrante. Ferrante is one of the largest wineries in Ohio’s wine country and produces some very nice wines. But we came to a fork in the road and as for me, I took the road less travelled.

Outside Harpersfield Vineyard I saw the flag indicating they were open and even before I could make a conscious decision, I was turning left and rumbling up the drive to their old world tasting room. This was different than our last visit, when the tasting room was bustling with customers and flames were crackling in the large fireplace.

The sun was coming out and it was turning into a beautiful afternoon. Green Dragon and I were the only visitors on this weekday and so I had a nice chance to converse with co-owner Patty Ribic.
Harpersfield was noticeably absent from the Ohio Wine Producers Association event we had attended and I asked Patty about it. She said that Harpersfield was an estate winery and that many of the OWPA members don’t grow their own grapes. She is interested in authenticity and being true to the wine.

As she laid out her philosophy we sampled wine and the Harpersfield terriers scooted through the tasting room and into the sunny courtyard. I shared my thoughts about how wine, friends and new experiences blend to make wonderful memories.

On our previous visit we really savored the wine. The grapes are all hand-picked and the terroir really shines through. There are no fads or folderol here, just honest juice without the heavy hand of interventionist winemaking.

We were reluctantly preparing to go when Patty pulled out a special sample for us, “Les Reves” Chardonnay, which is French for dreams. The wine was beautifully layered with green apple, light oakiness and vanilla. A touch of caramel highlighted the taste. I envisioned a wispy cloud wafting about with the sun poking through. This was certainly a very special wine. I grabbed my credit card so we could procure a bottle.

Patty firmly told me to put it away and presented the bottle as a gift. Here, she said, take it and enjoy it with friends. But drink it soon, don’t wait. That, she said, is what wine is all about.

And so we did.

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