5 Wines You Must Try This Fall
Fall appeared to sneak up so quickly. Summer was just here, long sunny days and warm evenings. Before you know it, the leaves are changing and the nights are longer. Fall was here without warning. Fall is definitely here. Just like the seasons are transitioning, people are transitioning to earthier, spicier and fuller body wines. We found wines that will make your transition to fall easier. Here are five wines you must try before fall ends.
Rocky Shoals, Slack Farm (Leonardtown, MD)
There is never a bad time to have sparkling wine. Have a tough day at work; have a glass of sparkling. Win the lottery; have a glass of sparkling. It is 4:00 pm; have a sparkling glass of wine. See what I mean, never a bad time.
Slack Farm’s Rocky Shoals sparkling wine is always good to enjoy. Fall is a better time of year to enjoy this cranberry red color, demi-sec sparkling wine. You are immediately greeted with a lot of fuzz and mellows to a mild effervesces. There are fruity notes of strawberries and raspberries on the nose. You will enjoy tart cherries and rhubarb on the palate.
Zuccàto Pumpkin Spice, Mount Felix Vineyard & Winery (Havre de Grace, MD)
In this season of pumpkin spice this and that, it is not surprising there is a pumpkin wine. Someone had to do it. Pumpkin wine sounds odd and gimmicky. But, it is not. Trust me. Zuccàto wine puts you in the mood to go to the pumpkin patch or visit the apple orchard. Its color is striking, brilliant autumn gold. Clove, nutmeg are the spices you smell. The spices are more pronounced when you taste the wine. You also get hints of applesauce on the palate and baked bread. This is a seasonal wine. Mount Felix only produces this wine this time of year and it sells out every year. Do not wait to try it.
Peach Kissed, Harford Vineyard &Winery (Forest Hill, MD)
Why are we recommending a peach wine in the fall? Shouldn’t we wait until the spring to discuss peaches? Its name, Peach Kissed, leads you to believe it is a light airy wine. By its name, it is expected that it is a sweet wine. Its name is deceiving. It is not a fruit wine. It is a wine that has hints of peaches. It is not a sweet wine, but an earthy wine. The wine is pale straw color. What is most striking are the spice flavors, you would enjoy in a warm peach pie. The finish lingers in anticipation for your next sip.
2015 Concerto, Harmony Vineyards and Winery (Baltimore County)
Harmony Vineyards is one of Maryland’s lesser known vineyards because it does not have a public tasting room. However, if you frequent Baltimore restaurants or Mills wine store Harmony wines are very popular. I stumbled upon Harmony’s Concerto at Mills and I am happy I did. Concerto is a blend of Merlot 66%, Cabernet Sauvignon 22%, Petit Verdot 5%, Barbera 4% and Syrah 3%. Aged in 18 months in new and old French oak. It is the perfect wine to serve at Thanksgiving dinner or sip by itself. Its color is velvet. The black fruit aromas capture you when the bottle is uncorked. An enjoyable medium body, mild tannin wine has mineral notes and cook fruit like plums and currant on the palate. Concerto is an excellent excuse to go out to dinner.
2015 Pinot Noir, Black Ankle Vineyard (Mt. Airy, MD)
As far as I am concern Oregon and Washington winemakers have a foot up on us when growing Pinot Noir grapes. Not saying west coast winemakers are superbly smarter or better. They just have better conditions to grow Pinot Noir. Pinot Noir is an extremely difficult grape to grow well on the east coast. You have to have the right, maybe even perfect, growing conditions to cultivate this grape. These conditions influence what goes into the bottle. I have tried many right coast Pinot Noirs and very few have left a meaningful impression until this weekend.
It was by chance I had an opportunity to try this particular Pinot Noir. One of the Tour Ambassador’s became sick and I had to substitute for her. The tour was to Black Ankle Vineyard on the Westminster Regional Tour. One of Black Ankle’s Assistant Managers told me have to try this Pinot Noir. Skeptically, I thought not even Black Ankle can make a noteworthy Pinot. I was wrong. Aged 18 months in French oak, it is a beautiful jewel tone garnet. Fruit forward on the nose, but not overwhelming. You are greeted with Bing cherries, currants and smoke. There is generous minerality, soft tannin, and medium body. Black Ankle’s Pinot Noir is limited in production. If you are interested in being wowed, take a trip to Black Ankle.
Cheers to fall! You can purchase most of these wines from the vineyards’ websites.
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