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Two More Quality 2011 Finger Lakes Rieslings from Lucas and Ravines


As I noted in my last post, every year, the Finger Lakes Wine Alliance (“FLWA”) sponsors a series of virtual tastings for the media to spread the word about the latest vintage of Finger Lakes rieslings. This is the second year that I have participated. So, here is the disclaimer: I received the wines reviewed in the post and six others as a free sample package from the FLWA. I promised no positive reviews, or any reviews at all, in exchange for these bottles.

Please read my first post in this series for a little background on the Finger Lakes Wine region. Tonight, I am writing about the next two wines I have tasted from the FLWA’s sample, Lucas Vineyards‘ 2011 Dry Riesling and Ravines Wine Cellars‘ 2011 Dry Riesling.

Lucas Vineyards began in 1974 with Ruth Lucas and her family left the Bronx to grow grapes. The family harvested their first grape crop in 1978 and released its first vintage in 1980, after Ruth became one of the first female winery owners in the region. Lucas now grows 14 grape varieties, including Riesling, Cabernet Franc, Syrah, Chardonnay, and Gewurztraminer.

Lucas’ 2011 Dry Riesling was the result of a hot, sunny season with late rains that required a quick harvest. It has 1.0% residual sugar (btw, here is a helpful article on understanding and measuring residual sugar). The wine has citrus aromas with subtle floral notes and hits the palate with high acidity. It has flavors of citrus fruits and unripened peaches. Simple, enjoyable, and a solid value, it is a good go-to wine for spicy faire, Asian food, or just as an every day sipping wine. 1/2, Appx. $13.99/bottle.

Ravines Wine Cellars was founded by Morten & Lisa Hallgren.  Morten Hallgren is the progeny of a wine making family from the Provence region of France, which is famous for its elegant rose wines. He spent his first harvest as an oenologist in Bordeaux before moving to the United States. He passed through wineries in West Texas and North Carolina before moving to the Finger Lakes to work at Dr. Konstantin Frank’s Vinifera Wine Cellars, a winery with which readers of this blog are very familiar.  The Hallgren’s purchased their shale stone-soiled property on the Eastern slopes of Keuka Lake in 2000. While the Finger Lakes is famous for its whites, Ravines’ reds have also received high praise, including multiple vintages of the winery’s Meritage blend.

Ravines 2011 Dry Riesling has 0.4% residual sugar, clocks in at 12.2% ABV, and was left on lighter lees until late February. It presents with aromas of tropical fruits and petroleum. A high acidity wine, it has flavors of limes, pineapples, and other tropical fruits. A subtle layer of minerality adds complexity. This is a crisp, refreshing wine that was an excellent compliment to jerk chicken. Another fine offering from a producer with a stellar reputation. , $16.95/bottle.

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