Shinn Estate Vineyards, “Coalescence” White Blend, North Fork, New York
Wine of the Week with Annette Tomei
Long Island is east of New York City and may be best known for its seaside getaways for a century of rich and famous. Also, as being a large bedroom community of “The City”. For ages, the North Fork of Long Island has been an agricultural community where wonderful potatoes, sweet corn, and happy oysters come from. In the past 40 years, they’ve added world-class wines to that list. And ones that are producing some really interesting blends like this juicy white wine.
Shinn Estate was established in 2000, just as the North Fork was awarded AVA (American Viticultural Area) status. The first vintage was in 2002. In 2012, the vineyards were certified as sustainable by the Long Island Sustainable Winegrowing authority.
About this Wine
Coalescence is a unique blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, and Riesling with a touch of Semillon. Though the Riesling is not the primary grape, it really comes out in the floral aromatics. Each grape in this blend is fermented separately. The subsequent wines are blended in stainless steel.
The aromatics of this medium-bodied wine are super floral – roses, jasmine, honeysuckles and a hint of butter. On the palate, juicy citrus, ripe melon, and apricots come together deliciously. The finish is a touch astringent with herbal, green notes coming from the Sauvignon Blanc.
I enjoyed this wine with a mild creamy cheese and salty Marcona almonds. In keeping with the sense of place, I’d recommend this wine with delicate white fish (flounder), oysters and other shellfish. I’d also recommend this a a great pairing for the so-called difficult vegetables to pair – asparagus and artichokes, because of the bright acidity, lush mouthfeel, and the astringent finish.
I like that this juicy white wine is a unique blend that doesn’t take Chardonnay so seriously… I’d recommend it for that alone (Chard needs to be taken less seriously – it’s more fun that way!). This has been a go-to wine for me since I first tasted it over 5 years ago. It continues to bring a smile to my face, as well as memories of sunny days on the Long Island Sound ala The Great Gatsby! Though this may be a difficult wine to find, even in New York, it is available on line for $15-20 per bottle.
My new mission… to taste things I’ve never tasted before – either because I’m a snob, I can’t afford it, or it’s just a little too weird. I’ll let you know what I thought, and then you can decide for yourself if you will make the splurge, or take the leap into the strange but potentially delicious unknown!
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