New York City Top Red Wines

December 20, 2013

Some could be surprised to learn that New York is home to over 300 vineyards/wineries. Although they can be discovered all over the state, the four major American Viticultural Areas (AVA) are the Finger Lakes, Hudson Stream, Lake Erie, and Manhattan AVAs. The Manhattan region is particularly noted for its robust red wines; moderate temperatures and a long growing season led “Wine Spectator” mag to dub the Manhattan AVA “New York’s Bordeau.” Hudson Valley’s Brotherhood Winery, which introduced its first commercial vintage in 1839, is the oldest operating winery in the US. Since then New York wines have continuously increased in renown and status.

The most popular red wines from New York include Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, and Syrah (also called Shiraz). Here are among the best Manhattan red wines.

Owner’s Reserve Sauvignon 2001, Castle Lafayette Reneau

This prize winning wine made from 100 p.c cabernet sauvignon grapes is described by the Finger Lakes region winery as an “elegant wine with layers of black cherry and plum fruit…with a silky finish of chocolate and spice.” One of New York’s most renowned red wines, it will set the buyer back about 43 dollars.

2008 Reserve Merlot, Bedell Cellars

Considered one of the very finest Manhattan red wines, it is produced from some of the oldest merlot vines on Long Ialand. Aged for 12 months in small oak barrels, Bedell Cellars 2008 Reserve Merlot is noted for its odour of “violets, beach plums, and brambles.”

2008 Estate Syrah, Arrowhead Spring

The tiny, family controlled and managed Arrowhead Spring vineyard in the Niagara Escarpment area is known for using traditional strategies to craft their wines by hand in tiny lots. “Wine Observer” gave Arrowhead’s 2008 Estate Syrah the highest score the magazine has ever given to a Syrah wine.

2002 Premier Cru Merlot, Wolffer Estate

This is the New York red wine to serve or order when desiring to electrify an administrator or customer. At approximately $125 a bottle, it's the Long Island region’s most dear wine.

Meritage, Casa Larga

This prize winning red wine is a mix of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc that has been aged for 18 months. The medium- to full-bodied wine has a smell of dark berries.

Classic Red, Hunt Country

This lightly-oaked red wine from the Finger Lakes area has a complex fruit character that's harking back to Chianti. It is particularly acceptable to pour it with pizza or Italian foods.

Cabernet Franc, Swedish Hills

Swedish Hills winery, established in 1986 in the Finger Lakes region, soon gained a rep for making a reasonably-priced superior product. The mouth-watering Cabernet Franc, priced at only $15/bottle, is Manhattan state's only three-time winner of the distinguished Governor’s Award (1994, 2008 and 2010).

All of New York’s wine-producing regions have winery tours that include the vineyards, production process, wine-tasting, and regularly a delectable lunch. A wine lover’s perfect day!

Jeff Myers has been fascinated by wine bars in nyc for a number of years. He has written many articles about this topic, including short lived histories and the top most engaging facts. For more information about nyc wine bars please visit


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