I gotta admit, I was skeptical. Then I had a fantastic Texas Rosé called Dandy, at the Rosé Mansion and thought, maybe I was wrong… Again, my wine snob was showing. Expecting only awesome wines from certain areas, whether in the US or Europe, is limiting. I really did want to be swept off my feet by something outside of the expected. The idea that different areas in the United States could not only grow great grapes, but could also produce wonderful wines makes me happy. And thankfully, Early Mountain Vineyards in Virginia does not disappoint.
Let’s start with their rosé. Early Mountain Rosé 2017 Virginia. This dry rosé is packed with the awesome juiciness of ripe red fruit and balanced with wonderful acidity. I actually found more acidity in the front of this wine with a lovely suppleness on the finish that has you coming back for more. The blend of 73% Merlot, 18% Syrah, 7% Malbec, 2% Cabernet Franc is lovely. The price, $25, is perfect.
Next up, Early Mountain’s red blend Eluvium 2015. Chocolate, cherry and tobacco on the nose. Dry, ripe red fruit on the palate. Awesome. It is dry, with good minerality and lovely tannins on the finish. It’s priced at $38 and while on the higher end for some shoppers it is a red blend well worth the money.
Lastly, Early Mountain Cabernet Franc 2016. At $34 it is a beautiful expression of Cabernet Franc. Cabernet Fanc is one of my favorite grape varietals, but still somewhat off the radar for most New York wine buyers. A little lighter, less fruity, which translates to most palates as dryer, and with more earth than Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc is a food friendly wine that can also be enjoyed on its own.
So Virginia isn't just for lovers, but for wine lovers too!