Lenz Merlot “Estate Selection” 2000 wine review by (PB)
Full disclosure--As is our custom, whenever our friends from various wineries around the country send us wine to review we are sure to let you know that. One reason is that it helps us remain objective! We do not believe it helps anyone to give an inflated review just to stay in the good graces of a winery in order to obtain samples.
The folks at Lenz Winery on long Island New York sent each of us at the wine cask 6 bottles to review. Founded in 1978, the winery has some of the most mature vineyards in the region with nearly 70 acres of their own. (Although some tasting notes were included, I have not looked at those notes to again, insure objectivity)
What will be fun is for you to see how each of us rate the same wines. Since we live in different parts of the country, they will appear at random so keep visiting with us often.
This is my first experience with this winery and to be honest I am skeptical of any red wines coming out of New York. But you must read on--
This wine is a nice black cherry in color with a purple rim showing its youthfulness even though nearly 7 years old. There is an under bouquet of gentle fruit with a hint of dill but as you go deeper into the nose there seems to be a rather disturbing tone of alcohol.
First taste on opening is a trace of toluene with some toast and not much flavor. I will let this breathe.
With 50 minutes of air—bing, bang, boom! Some wines you just HAVE to breathe and this is one. This is NOT your typical “new world” wine and reminds me much more of an old world creation that is more subtle and layered and nuanced and thrilling. This turns into something totally unexpected with the benefit of air.
There is still a touch of dill in the nose, which I love, with a fruity raspberry and cherry bouquet. In the mouth there are subtle vanilla notes, then another layer of fruit then another layer of mystery; I am bewildered by this wine—it is well made, mysterious and still young! The enclosure with the wine says to drink within three years but this wine still has more time to age on it and will benefit from additional maturity.
Okay, so I am blown away by what has totally destroyed my preconceived notions about New York red wine. The reference price on this wine is $23. Now I can’t wait to try the others. Raise a glass to “Lawn Gyland!”