Millbrook Winery - A Special Hudson Valley, New York Wine Tasting @millbrookwinery


Wrapping up our month long focus on the Hudson Valley wine region of New York, we enjoyed tasting two wines from Millbrook Winery, a Tocai Friulano and a Cabernet Franc.

Millbrook Winery is located in the Hudson River Valley just 1.5 hours from both New York City and Albany, New York. They have been called "the Hudson Valley's flagship winery" by The New York Times and "a great place to visit" by The Wall Street Journal. Visit any time of year for a tour and for wine tasting.

Millbrook Winery has cultivated thirty vineyard acres. Current varietals include Chardonnay (13 acres) Pinot Noir (5 acres), Cabernet Franc (7 acres), Tocai Friulano (5 acres) and Riesling (5 acres). Winemaker John Graziano has been crafting wines for Millbrook since 1984. He studied plant pathology and entomology at Cornell University. Currently, John is producing approximately 10,000 – 14,000 cases of  wine annually from estate fruit, as well as fruit from across New York and their California vineyards. He has been the only winemaker at Millbrook since its establishment.

A big thank you to Protocol Wine Studio and Debbie Gioquindo,CSW for arranging and guiding us through a wonderful introduction to Hudson Valley wines. Tasting notes and Hudson Valley wine region information follow.

Tasting Notes 2013 Tocai Fruilano:

Color: Straw, shiny clear, green highlights.
Nose: Tropical floral, mineral, white pepper, with air pear and savory.
Palate: Wow, really good. Fruity crisp with lemon, tropical fruit and lively acid on the palate. Noticed some slight effervescence with a lemony finish. Think of a city cafe with good friends and fresh seafood.
Day two: Fresh, herbal, honey, pear on nose. Expressive, lemon-honey, creamy, tropical finish. No effervescence. Would be lovely with chicken and Mediterranean food.

Thoughts: Enjoyed at home with sauteed shrimp, and broiled salmon. Day two it was a good pairing with baked herb'd chicken. This wine wants food. Recommended.

Blend: 100% Tocai Fruilano
No oak, No malolactic
Closure: Natural cork
ABV: 13%
SRP: $20
Production: 1060 cases
Winemaker, John Graziano
Sample provided by the winery

Note:  The Italian wine grape known as Friulano from Friuli-Venezia Giulia was known as "Tocai Friulano" until March 31, 2007 when the European Court of Justice of Luxembourg set the prohibition of using the name "Tocai" in the name of the wine (as stipulated in a 1993 agreement between the European Union and Hungary). Since 2007 Tocai Friulano is merely known as "Friulano" in Friuli and is labeled as such. It is also known as Sauvignon Vert. "The grape is believed to have originated in the Veneto region and from there traveled to other Italian regions especially to the Friuli region were it was cultivated since 1600." Source: Sauvignon vert - Wikipedia

Tasting Notes 2012 Proprietors Special Reserve Cabernet Franc: 

Color: Garnet.
Nose: Enticing, focused, candied, spicy, leather, black currant, tomato (leaf), after 50 mins petrol jelly in background. 
Palate: Smooth, creamy, dry, cherry, spice. Nose and palate more dominant, medium finish after 30 minutes. After 3.5 hours it began to show deeper flavors and aromas.
Day two: Tomato on the nose, white pepper, dry sage, olive juice and blackberry in the background. It drank dry, with cherry and blackberry in the background, tannin most noticeable on the teeth (like). Tacky dry on the tongue, with black currant into the finish. Showed well on day two with an even longer finish. Eminently drinkable.

Thoughts: Day one it paired well with broiled salmon. I would suggest pairing with red meat too, but not heavily seasoned dishes. It showed greater depth and complexity on day two. There's life in this vintage. Strongly recommended.

Blend: 95% Cabernet Franc, 5% Merlot
Malolactic Fermentation: 100%
Closure: Natural cork
ABV: 13%
Winemaker, John Graziano
Production: 336 cases
SRP: $30
Sample provided by the winery

Millbrook Winery
26 Wing Road, Millbrook, NY 12545
Phone: (845) 677-8383; (800) 662-WINE

Owner: John S. Dyson
General Manager: David H. Bova
Winemaker: John Graziano
Hours of Operation: Open 7 days a week, from 12:00-5:00p.m.                                      
Summer Hours: Memorial Day through Labor Day 11:00-6:00p.m.
Vineyard Grille & Café Hours: May 28 through October 12:00-5:00 p.m. Weekends Only
Vineyard Express Shuttle Service: June 1 - October 27/ Weekends Only
CLOSED: Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years Day

Hudson Valley Wine Resources:
Last month on #winestudio we discussed and tasted the Hudson Valley wine region of New York. We began our tasting of Hudson Valley wines with the Whitecliff 2013 White Rose, a white wine composed of 75% Traminette and 25% Gewurztraminer, All Estate Grown fruit. The following week we tasted a 100% sparkling Chardonnay from Americas oldest winery, the Brotherhood Winery NV Brut Sparkling Chardonnay. Ending our tasting visit with the two lovely wines from Millbrook Winery helped reinforce the impression of quality and terroir from the Hudson Valley wine region. An educational and tasty experience.

New York Wine Regions.

The Hudson Valley Region

Beginning just one hour north of New York City, the Hudson Valley is the oldest wine region in the United States. French Huguenots planted the first vines in New Paltz (Ulster county) in 1677. The first winery was established in 1837 because of the need for sacramental wine. The Hudson Valley has a shorter growing season of 180 to 195 days compared to the Finger Lakes wine region with 190 to 205 days. Wineries in this region tend to be family owned, farm wineries. Today there are 25 wineries in the Hudson Valley.

"The Hudson River Region AVA is the oldest continually-productive wine region in the United States.  Though most people refer to this wine region as the Hudson River Valley or the Hudson Valley, on July 6, 1982 the BATF—in its wisdom—granted the AVA but chose to call it by another name in order to avoid confusion with a winery that already bore the name, Hudson River Valley Winery (no longer in production)." Source: Wine, Seriously "Viniculture in the Hudson River Region-background"

Growing wine regions need your help. I encourage you to visit local wineries and to buy from small producers. All 50 states produce wine. When you are traveling, seek out the local producers and give them a taste. You could be surprised and impressed by the quality you discover. Add the Hudson Valley wine region to your must visit list and taste some delicious New York wines.


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