Last year, when this wine won "Best Cabernet Franc" and "Best Red Wine" at the 2007 New York Food & Wine Classic, I was inundated with emails from surprised readers, emails asking things like:
"How can that possibly be the best red wine in New York?"
"Have you had that wine yet? How is it?"
"How can anyone take these results seriously no?"
I didn't have much in the way of answers. I hadn't tasted the wine at the time and for a variety of reasons, I still say that it's hard to take the event 100% seriously.
But this wine impressed in a recent tasting. It impressed me quite a bit in fact.
I've disliked previous vintages of this wine. They were thin, overly green and poorly balanced, but this wine fell victim to none of those shortcomings.
The nose is inviting with expressive aromas of black cherry, blackberry, earth and basic-tarragon. Black cherry flavors dominate the medium-bodied, gently structured palate, with subtle mushroomy flavors, sweet herbs and asparagus. It's ripe, like many wines from the dry, hot 2005 vintage, but not overly so.
Maybe this wine is just an example of a terrific growing season helping a lesser producer produce a wine beyond their usual output. Maybe winemaker Jason Damianos has simply learned how to coax the best from his cabernet franc vines. I don't really care, this is a good wine that I'd recommend.
Is the best wine that I tasted last year? No. Is it even the best cabernet franc I tasted? No again, but I wasn't a judge at the competition. And again, this wine impressed. It's a prime example of how important blind tasting can be.
Sold out at the winery, I'm sure you'll be able to find it in retailers throughout New York. No Long Island winery has wider distribution than Pindar.