The 2018 vintage showed how much weather conditions can change during the growing season. Budbreak and flowering were a bit late, beginning in June. July recorded some of the hottest and driest days in the Finger Lakes, perfect conditions for ripening. Several weeks of rain in September forced us to be very selective in the vineyard. Several tries through the vineyard dropping poor fruit before harvesting only the best quality bunches. Harvest finished earlier than normal.
Riesling was first brought to the Finger Lakes by our founder. Those original vines dating back to 1958 are still in production. Riesling blocks on our Keuka vineyard were planted in 1958, 1962, 1968, 1976, 1999, 2006, and 2012 with various clones (88, 90, 11, 318, 239, 49, 110, 38). Soils here are shallow, shale-based which add minerality, acidity, and elegance. Riesling was planted in 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2012 on our Seneca estate vineyard with 90 and 356 clones. Temperatures here are a few degrees warmer than Keuka thus providing riper fruit notes. Soils on Seneca are characterized by deep honeoye silt loam.
Delicate at first then tropically ripe, brimming with apricot, nectarine and a touch of pineapple. A bit drier (by 0.2%) than the previous vintage, lemon citrus and acacia blossom balance the sweetness effortlessly.
Middle Eastern, Moroccan, Thai, and Asian cuisines. Pairs well with Spicy and Aromatic Ingredients like Pepper, Ginger, Curry, Sesame, and Soy. Spicy BBQ and Wings. Pork.
Dr. Konstantin FrankView all from Dr. Konstantin Frank
The Legacy of Dr. Konstantin Frank
Dr. Konstantin Frank ignited the "Vinifera Revolution" a movement that forever changed the course of wine growing in the Finger Lakes and the United States. Dr. Frank's vision, knowledge and determination are credited with elevating the New York wine industry from a state of happy mediocrity to a level that today commands world attention.
A European immigrant, Dr. Frank and his family arrived in the United States in 1951. After a brief stay in New York City, Dr. Frank, a professor of plant sciences who held a Ph.D. in viticulture, moved upstate to take a position at Cornell University's Geneva Experiment Station.
Dr. Frank believed from his years in the Ukraine that the lack of proper rootstock, not the cold climate, was the reason for the failure of Vitis Vinifera vines in the Finger Lakes region. He continued to promote his beliefs and to seek a sympathetic ear, which he found in Charles Fournier, a French champagne maker and president of nearby Gold Seal Vineyards. Communicating in French, Dr. Frank revealed his research for growing the delicate European vinifera grape varieties in cold climates. For the first time the Northeastern United States could produce European varieties of wines.
In 1962, merely a decade after arriving in America, Dr. Frank founded Vinifera Wine Cellars. The winery quickly earned a reputation for spectacular Rieslings and its original planting of vines formed the backbone of New York's world-class wines and champagnes.