Wines & Vines Home
   
 
Welcome Guest
LOGIN |  CREATE ACCOUNT
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 
 
 
05.27.2014  
 

Long Island Focuses on Merlot

Winery group hires executive director as part of plan to promote 'Merliance' winery trail

 
by Andrew Adams
 
 
“long
 
The Long Island Merlot Alliance debuted its 2011 Merliance blend—along with a winery trail by the same name—during Memorial Day weekend.
Cutchogue, N.Y.—A new winery trail formed by the Long Island Merlot Alliance (LIMA) debuted this weekend to help draw attention to an area its members consider one of the best places to grow Merlot in the United States.

The alliance formed its Merliance Wine Trail in conjunction with the May 24 release of its 2011 Merliance cooperative Merlot. The wine is made with grapes from each of the alliance wineries, which include Sherwood House Vineyards, Clovis Point, T’Jara Vineyards, McCall Wines, Lieb Cellars, Raphael and Wolffer Estate Vineyard

Member wineries pledged between one and four barrels of finished wine to make Merliance, for which the inaugural vintage was 2004. The final blend is assembled during a blending session attended by the winemaker from each member winery. The wine then ages in barrels for another year before its release.

Most of the wineries in the alliance make less than 10,000 cases of wine per year, according to the Wines Vines Analytics database. Wolffer Estate is the exception, producing 30,000 cases annually.

LIMA hires executive director
As another step in its development, the group recently hired Deborah Brenner, a native New Yorker and author of the book Women of the Vine, as its new executive director. She is also a member of U.S. Sen. Kristen Gillibrand’s New York Agriculture Working Group and a partner of MORE Magazine’s wine club, which features wines made by women winemakers. Brenner says she’s focused on raising the profile of the alliance among the media and consumers.

“Next year LIMA will celebrate its 10th anniversary, and they have been making tremendous strides producing world-class wines,” Brenner told Wines & Vines. “I wanted to take the leadership position to help educate the media and consumers about the region and to assist them in growing the alliance.”

Roman Roth, winemaker and part owner of Wolffer Estate, is also the president of LIMA. He said Brenner’s “enthusiasm and expertise” would be vital to helping the alliance maintain its cooperative effort to promote the region.

Collaborative effort to ensure quality
In recent years, Roth said, the alliance members have been sharing information, equipment and supplies, and the group has hosted international vineyard and winemaking consultants to help members make better wine. The alliance also has hosted trade and consumer tastings at the East End of the Hamptons and in New York City.

“Young people seem to be more open to explore varietals and regions,” Roth said. “Our vibrant and elegant Merlots that are not too fat or bold, with alcohol content around 13% or 13.5%, are very much sought after now.”

Roth said the Long Island area is particularly well suited for Merlot because there’s no significant winter damage, allowing vineyard managers more flexibility in pruning for quality yield. Long Island also enjoys a longer ripening season since it is the last part of New York state to see frost. Since Merlot ripens earlier than Cabernet Sauvignon or Cabernet Franc, growers have a larger window in which to achieve balance, Roth said.

“We take Merlot seriously,” he said. “It is one of the great red wine varieties, and by having a clear goal to make top-quality Merlot, we are slowly and steadily succeeding.”

He said another key to a successful future is ensuring a consistent level of quality among all members over several vintages. To that end, Roth said the group benefited from Mother Nature last year. “2013 was the best vintage Long Island ever harvested,” Roth said. “A vintage one only reads or dreams about.”

SHARE »
Close
 
Currently no comments posted for this article.
 
CURRENT NEWS INDEX »


 
Wines & Vines Home
 
866.453.9701 | 415.453.9700 | Fax: 415.453.2517
65 Mitchell Blvd., Ste. A San Rafael, CA 94903
info@winesandvines.com
Wine Industry Metrics
 
Off-Premise Sales » Month   12 Months  
February 2015 $643 million
7%
$7,954 million
5%
February 2014 $601 million $7,560 million
     
Direct-to-Consumer Shipments » Month   12 Months  
February 2015 $132 million
4%
$1,823 million
14%
February 2014 $126 million $1,598 million
     
Winery Job Index » Month   12 Months  
February 2015 275
26%
238
16%
February 2014 219 206
     
 
MORE » Released on 03.13.2015
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Direct To Consumer
Wine Shipping Report
2015
 
Download full report »
 
 

Practical Winery & Vineyard Library
 
Search the PWV archive »
 
 

CALENDAR
  • April 17
     
    Newsom Grape Day
     
  • April 17-19
     
    Earth Day Food & Wine Festival
     
  • April 21
     
    Ahead of the Curve
     
  • April 25-27
     
    World Wine Meetings America
     
  • MORE »
 

READER COMMENTS
 
Article: Is Organic Grape Growing Possible in the East? »
 
Some Long Island, NY, vineyard farmers are already using nearly organic methods. They have worked...
Reader: envcat
 
Article: Loosening AVA Regulations »
 
When I see 'Napa Valley'on a wine label, it doesn't only suggest the flavors I...
Reader: Guest
 
Article: Loosening AVA Regulations »
 
I should be able to live in MA, buy Napa, CA grapes, truck them across...
Reader: Guest
 
Article: The Stark Disparity in Critical Tastes »
 
The disparity is all well and good for consumers. More opinions and a kind of...
Reader: Guest
 
Article: Commercial Teaching Winery for the Midwest »
 
Please visit www.lakemichigancollege.edu/wine for more information about the program.
Reader: Guest
 
 


Directory/Buyer's Guide — Your Wine Industry Marketplace
 
 
WINERY SEARCH
 
 
Advanced Search »
SUPPLIER SEARCH
   by Product
 by Company Name or Brand
 
Browse by Category »
2015 Directory/Buyer's Guide
The Wines & Vines Directory and Buyer's Guide
 
 
EXPANDED ONLINE SEARCH INCLUDED WITH PURCHASE
 
ORDER NOW »
 
LEARN MORE »
 
 
Wines & Vines Magazine
 
 
LEARN MORE »
 
SUBSCRIBE »
 
Digital Edition Now Available!
Wines & Vines Digital Edition Now Available
 
LEARN MORE »
 
ORDER NOW »
 
 
The Wines & Vines Online Marketing System
 
The Industry Standard winery marketing application
 
FREE LIVE DEMO »
 
VIEW VIDEO »
 
 
 
 
Latest Job Listings
 Accountant
 Saint Helena, CA
Finance
 Tasting Room Sales Ass...
 Kenwood, CA
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 Graphic Designer (Juni...
 Santa Rosa, CA
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 Harvest Positions
 Sonoma, CA
Cellar, Lab and Production
 Tasting Room Associate
 Healdsburg, CA
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 Business Analyst
 San Francisco, CA
Sales and Marketing
 Cellar Master
 St. Helena, CA
Cellar, Lab and Production
 Harvest Cellar Worker
 Calistoga, CA
Cellar, Lab and Production
 2015 Harvest Intern
 Yountville, CA
Cellar, Lab and Production
 Tasting Room Professio...
 St. Helena, CA
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 
More Job Listings >>
Follow Us On:
 
 





Home  |  About Us  |  Editors  |  Subscribe  |  Print Edition  |  Digital Edition

Advertise  |  Site Map  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy
 
 
Copyright © 2001-2015 by Wine Communications Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
No material may be reproduced without written permission of the Publisher.
Wines&Vines does not assume any responsibility for any unsolicited manuscripts or materials.