Old York Cellars Sweet Riesling & Merlot


Estate: Old York Cellars is located in the Ringoes section of Hunterdon County and contains some of the oldest vineyards in New Jersey. Owner David Wolin currently has 12 acres of vineyards, cultivating a diverse selection including Barbera, Chenin Blanc, Pinot Gris, Syrah and Riesling. In addition to award winning wines and a lovely tasting room, they also hold special events such as art exhibits, yoga classes and Master Chef Dinners. Check out their website Old York Cellars for current special offers and to purchase the tasty wines below.

Old York Cellars Sweet Riesling 2013
Gold in colour with radiant aromas of honeysuckle, lime and fresh herbaceous elements. Sweet red apple and honeysuckle flavours are balanced by hints of pleasantly bitter citrus zest. A versatile, sweeter Riesling that is great on its own or fantastic with a wide variety of dishes, from fruit, chocolate to cheddar cheese.
100% Riesling

Old York Cellars Merlot NV
An interesting example of the innovative spirit of the winemaker, this is a blend of the 2013 and 2014 vintages. 2013 was a huge, bold vintage, whilst 2014 saw young, light grapes. Winemaker Scott Gares excersised his artistic flair by blending the two together to create an well balanced wine.

Garnet in color with floral aromas highlighted by strawberry preserves and earth notes. Fruity and plush with cherry and strawberry flavours joined by hints of baking chocolate in the medium body, culminating in a big smoky earth finish. This pairs wonderfully with hearty dishes.
100% Merlot
13.3% Alcohol


samples submitted for review purpose

Mountain Merlot 2011

Soft and velvety, this is a straightforward, glugable value that pairs with a wide variety of dishes.

Winery: Renowned, self-taught pioneer winemaker Charles Smith is the founder and winemaker behind The Magnificent Wine Company. He established the winery in 2004 with the goal of “bringing outstanding wines into people’s homes at an affordable, everyday price. Mountain Merlot is one of the latest additions to the range and joins well known wines as ‘House Red’ and ‘Steak House’.

Winemaking: Grapes are sourced from vineyards located throughout Columbia Valley “which provides the freedom to tailor grape selection exactly to our winemaking needs”.

Tasting Notes: Dark garnet in colour with compelling aromas of cherry, vanilla, licorice and dusty earth. Black cherry, blueberry and herbaceous nuances culminated with chocolate and hints of vanilla in the velvety finish.

82% Merlot, 10% Syrah, 8% Cabernet Sauvignon
Colombia Valley
Produced and Bottled by Original House Wine
13.5% Alcohol
Enjoy now

Falesco Merlot 2012


The Falesco estate was founded in 1979 by winemaker brothers Renzo and Riccardo Cotarella with the goal of recovering ancient vineyards located in the volcanic hills between Lazio and Umbria in central Italy. Today the family run estate is looking forward towards its 4th generation to continue the family’s philosophy of “a deep sense of belonging to the territory of origin and a scientific approach” along with a passion for rediscovering Italy’s indigenous varietals and creating quality wines.

Dark ruby-red in colour with aromas of red fruits, wildflowers and fennel. Light on its feet with soft raspberry and plum flavours merging into smooth tannins and earthy chocolate notes lingering deftly between each sip. Delightfully easy drinking, this is a versatile, crowd-pleasing Merlot.

100% Merlot
Bottled by AZ Vinicola Falesco
13.5% Alcohol
Enjoy now thru 2016

Rated 88 points by the Wine Advocate
Rated 88 points by Wine Enthusiast

North Fork Project Merlot 2011


I had found North Fork Project Merlot 2010 delightful so I was enthusiastic to give a pour to the 2011. The North Fork Project is a collaboration between Pellegrini Vineyards in Long Island NY and importer/distributer Martin Scott Wines. Their goal is to introduce their estate grown, sustainably produced, food-friendly wines to a wider audience. Pellegrini Vineyards are located in Cutchogue NY, which has a parallel climate and rainfall to that of Bordeaux. With a motto of “think global, drink local”, they strive to bring high quality, great tasting sustainably produced wines to the table.

Dark garnet in colour with aromas of cherry, green olive and hints of white pepper. Tasting quite comparable to the 2011 with black cherry, earth and traces of oak in the medium body, along with black peppercorn, dried herbs and bitter dark chocolate on the lengthy finish. Very accessible with jammy fruit and soft tannins, this is a sharing-friendly and budget friendly bottle for the table.

85 Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc
North Fork
New York
Produced and Bottled by Tgidget Wines, Cutchogue
13% Alcohol
$12 [1 litre]
Enjoy now


Fairview La Capra Merlot 2009

I am always seeking out family owned, environmentally responsible vineyards. Fairview winery is renowned for their budget friendly wines and remarkable achievements in sustainability, so I pick them up whenever I find them. Fairview is a third generation family owned vineyard located in the Western Cape region of South Africa. Records show that winemaking on the property extends all the way back to 1699. With this sense of history and responsibility; the Back family is committed to protecting the environment and sustainable farming. They use environmentally friendly products in both the vineyards and cellar, they are committed to water conservation and the restoration and planting of indigenous vegetation. They have the honour of being awarded as the first Carbon Neutral Cheesery on the African continent. The La Capra label is inspired by the La Capra festival, and created in easy drinking fruity style, meant for “early enjoyment and relaxed dining”. The grapes were sourced from vineyards located in Darling, Stellenbosch and Paarl.

Dark garnet in colour with aromas of cherry and earthy, barnyard funk. Black cherry, blackberry and licorice flavours merged into a velvety finish of smoky campfire and hints of crushed pink peppercorn. With a few years under its belt [the 2012 vintage is currently out, although not in my local shops], the fresh fruity Merlot has been transformed into a fascinating, smoky, Pinotage-esque glass, reminiscent of snuggling up to a cozy fire.

Merlot [I could not verify varietal percentage]
South Africa
Produced and Bottled at Fairview, Paarl by Charles Back and the Fairview Team
14% Alcohol
Enjoy now