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1 December, 2015

2015 Finger Lakes Riesling Launch

Posted in : Dessert Wine, Riesling, White Wine on by : The Gourmez

For the second year in a row, I took part in the Finger Lakes Wine Alliance Riesling Launch, a live-tweeting event that invites wine writers and bloggers to check out the newest vintage (2014) of the region’s signature grape varietal together, virtually at least, with the wineries. I received sample bottles of three different rieslings, one each in the dry, semi-sweet, and sweet categories. Obligatory disclaimer: Samples means these wines were given to me free of charge.

FLX launch

I poured my glasses, set my chilled wine out about a half an hour before the event so I could get a better sense of their noses, and began. The first wine was from Thirsty Owl and…


…it turns out I got the wrong bottle! That was quickly apparent, as the tasting moved from driest to sweetest wines, and the Thirsty Owl was assuredly sweeter than the semi-dry bottle from Lakewood.

But that didn’t stop me from enjoying it!

thirsty owl

Seriously, I think it’d make a great tequila chaser.  Perhaps a good fit for drunken pork or chicken?

Next up was the Lakewood Vineyards Riesling.


Expecting this one to be sweeter in comparison to the Thirsty Owl actually increased my enjoyment of it, as I really am more of a dry fan when it comes to rieslings and at 18.5 g/L of residual sugar, this assuredly is not one of those. But those expectations made me hone in on the acidity in the glass with a sharpened focus.


It wasn’t as balanced as I’d like, but I appreciated those acidic undertones and think it would go well with crisp salads.

The final bottle was dessert all the way and made no apologies for it. How could it when Juicy Sweet is part of the name?


Imagine my shock, as a lover of dry whites, to find I enjoyed the Fulkerson Estate Juicy Sweet Riesling the most of the trio! It had savory and yeasty notes that were fun to pick out from the bevy of preserves.

Fulkerson Juicy Sweet

I think it could deepen my appreciation of a simple bowl of vanilla ice cream.

Once again, I enjoyed being part of the Finger Lakes Wine Alliance’s riesling launch. Funnily enough, I didn’t have much riesling during the 2015 Wine Bloggers Conference in Corning. Knowing I would quickly OD on the stuff, as it forms such a primary core of the Finger Lakes wine industry and my white wine preferences are solidly on the dry side, I chose instead to focus on trying as many of the Finger Lakes’ reds and experimental whites as I could. So digging into rieslings once I was back home functioned as a mignardise course for that whole Finger Lakes experience. But it left me craving an aperitif. Can we include ice wine next year? Pretty please?

You can get all three of these bottles straight from the wineries’ websites for $13–$15.

This Finger Lakes Wine Alliance Riesling Launch took place on 30 September 2015.

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