When we were presented with this Wine Blogging Wednesday idea, “At the Source”, by the founder, Lenn Thompson from The New York Cork Report, we were to go and pick a vineyard or winery, drink a wine the with the winemaker there and blog about it. I chose Waters Crest because of a contact I made on Facebook. Waters Crest may not have fit the bill at first. You see, Waters Crest Winery is not your everyday winery. When you think of Long Island, Sound Avenue, Route 48, North Country Road and wineries, what comes to mind; vines! Well don’t go to fast in Cutchogue, just keep your eyes on the left side of the road or you may pass Waters Crest Winery. And if you don’t pass it, and pull in to Waters Crest Winery, your first thought might be, “Huh?”
But that “Huh?” will quickly turn to “WOW!”
It was not easy to choose, just one wine from Waters Crest. I had four that were standouts in my opinion and my notes. The 2008 Reserve Chardonnay, 2006 Merlot, 2006 Cabernet Franc Private Reserve and the Late Harvest 2007 Night Watch. So by process of elimination, I decided to purchase two of the four. And one of those would be my selection. I purchased the Merlot and the Cabernet Franc.
I went home and reviewed my notes, wrote a little about my visit and reflected on the wine. My wife came home and looked at my notes and noticed something; my write-up for the Night Watch was extensive and very positive. “Did you buy it?”, she said. I said no.
The following week we went to Jamesport Manor Inn. Looking over the wine list there was a good amount of Long Island wine and some Waters Crest wine, then I noticed the Desert Wine section…and staring me in the face was, Waters Crest Night Watch. Hmm.
About a week later, I opened and tasted both wines I purchased recorded my notes and enjoy the wine. I let them sit another day and retasted, they were still showing nicely. However, that Night Watch was call me. So on Monday I had an appointment with another winery, and went to Waters Crest for the Night Watch…too many coincidences, I had to pick it up, it was calling my name.
This wine, Night Watch ($44.99) is a desert wine. It is a blend of 70% Chardonnay, 20% Gewurztraminer and 10% Riesling. It has a dark golden color.
On the nose, there are a lot of Tropical notes; I was getting some pineapple, mango, peach and apricot. There was a toasted nut aroma happening too. A world of aromas that I could just sit and sniff for hours.
The taste was even more enjoyable. There was a wonderful honey vanilla flavor with a creamy peach, apricot and a touch of lychee fruit going on. There was a bit of spice happening too, you could really pick up the Gewurztraminer here.
There was an excellent balance between the sugar and the acidity. It had a wonderful smooth and silky mouth feel.
I had asked Jim about the method used to make this wine. Jim said “the fruit is harvested late in the season and is placed into a freezer where it is kept for about six to eight weeks. When the temperature falls below 38 degrees the fruit is then brought in, late at night, and the process begins of pressing the wine”. This process is an 18 hour process cycle where he uses a bladder press. Jim is looking for a certain gravity measurement of sugar to alcohol. Jim went on to say, “As the water moisture is converted over to sugar the brix content is extremely high in the beginning. As the sugar then gradually converts to water the brix comes down. This helps keep the viscosity and definition to the wine along with the apricot elements to the wine”.
I was so intrigued by this process mainly because he does not have his own vineyard. I wondered how it was done. Jim went on to tell me that because he does this so late at night, sometimes until 2:00 AM, he is watching this into the night…alas, “Night Watch”.
I highly recommend this wine to you. Melissa and I had a glass last night and she drank this before me. I savored this, enjoyed every little sip I took. I am not really a desert wine fan; I just could never find the right one. But I think I did with this wine. The process intrigued me, the name intrigues me, and the winery intrigued me. That is why I chose this wine as my wine for Wine Blogging Wednesday, “At the Source”.
Another reason why I chose this is because of the man who puts his everything in to this and all of his wines, Jim Waters. Jim made me feel so at ease and comfortable; (remember this was part of my first Long Island visit for my blog). Jim welcomed me in and as he described his process and ideas, you could feel his passion for great wine, and you sure as hell could taste it.
Looking back at my notes. The first word I wrote was WOW! And the last word I wrote was WOW! This wine will WOW you for sure.
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