Friday, April 4, 2014

Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellars: Finger Lakes Winery Visit

Another in our continuing series of reports on our Finger Lakes winery visits.
Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellar is an impressive temple-like structure in Lodi on the east shore of Seneca Lake. When traveling north, it is poised in a scenic location right before you have the option of traveling north or cutting east to Cayuga Lake. It’s not a bad idea to delay the decision altogether and stop in to sample their amazing lineup of wines.
The tasting experience at Lamoreaux is a feast for the eyes, nose and tastebuds. The striking architecture of the winery frames scenic views of the lake and brilliant blue sky. Guests can choose from a standard tasting (featuring six wines), specialty offerings of sparkling, library and dessert wines or an assortment of flights. All told, there are almost 30 wines on the tasting menu.
Our tasting team of four began with the 2011 Gruner Veltliner, the first release of this grape by the winery. It offers light herbal notes and good minerality. Lamoreaux is known for their great Riesling and we sampled four different bottlings. The ‘09 Reserve Riesling is dry and complex, benefitting from whole cluster pressing. The ‘11 Dry Riesling delights with soft lemon notes. At only $13.99, it is a great value and one of our top picks. The 2011 Round Rock Vineyard Riesling was my favorite with a creamy texture and citrus flavors. The 2011 Red Oak Vineyard Riesling is fragrant with floral scents and expansive on the palate. It offers tastes of soft tropical fruit.
We sampled two other whites, the 2012 Gerwurztraminer (traditional feel with aromatic nose) and the 2009 42 North (blend that includes Muscat with 2% residual sugar). Then it was on to the reds.
Lamoreaux Landing is a Finger Lakes winery that does reds right. They rock Cabernet Franc and excel with their own blends. We were pleased to be able to do a side-by-side tasting of the 2011 T23 Cabernet Franc and the 2007 Cabernet Franc. The T23 is aged in steel tanks and has the lightness of a Loire wine with nice acidity and cranberry flavors. The ‘07 is aged in oak barrels and is a richer wine with complex flavors of coffee and leather in addition to the cherry notes.
We wrapped our tasting experience with the 2010 76 West blend. While Lamoreaux offers a non-vintage Estate Red blend, the 76 West is the flagship wine. It is a Bordeaux style blend of 52% Cabernet Franc, 24% Merlot and 24% Cabernet Sauvignon. It provides a pop of fruit within a nice framework of tannins. The flavor of blueberry shines through on the long finish.
Lamoreaux Landing is a third generation family winery that uses sustainable practices. It has one of the most beautiful tasting rooms in the region and consistently wins top winery honors. Blend this with superb wines and you have a “must see” winery for your next Finger Lakes visit.
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