D’Amato & Szabo: Wine Thieves – New York Wines Episodes

Farming in the Forks: Long Island’s Maritime Vines

The Wine Thieves find themselves in a New York state of wine as they begin a new series investigating the disparate terroirs and wealth of wine styles in the only US state that borders both the Atlantic Ocean and the Great Lakes. Long Island is their first destination, a stone’s throw from New York City. This maritime-influenced region was first planted with grapes in the 1600s, and has been producing wine commercially for almost 50 years. Its sandy-gravelly soils and moderate climate make it a natural for Bordeaux varieties. But John and Sara find out that there are more than bold reds on offer in Long Island, such lush chardonnays, rosés, sparkling wines and a host of other styles. The trend towards less oak  and more limited intervention seems to resonate well with their biggest market that radiates from Manhattan.
John and Sara speak with Gabriella Macari of Macari Vineyards and Kareem Massoud of Paumanok Vineyards at their wineries in the North Fork of Long Island. Together, they explore the three AVAs of Long Island, discuss the differences between the North and South Forks, the threat of hurricanes as well as the soaring price of real estate in The Hamptons. Despite all of these challenges, you’ll find out why these growers persevere. We’ll uncover the latest trends, delve into a little history and finish off with a lobster roll and sparkling wine, and Long Island duck with cabernet franc. 
This episode was produced in partnership with New York Wine & Grape Foundation. 

Finger Lakes, New York

The Wine Thieves continue their journey through New York, venturing into the best known wine region of the 4th largest wine producing state in the USA, the Finger Lakes AVA. Encompassing 11 slender, glacially carved, finger-like lakes running roughly north-south, this diverse region may be best known for its riesling, but John and Sara discover just how many more grape varieties are actually planted. From widely-praised cabernet franc, to delicate pinot noir,  stony chardonnay, plus grüner veltliner, blaufränkisch, saperavi, rkatsitelli and many more,  Finger Lakes vintners have not finished experimenting just yet. We’ll turn back time to the earliest days of vinifera plantings in New York State by stubborn visionaries Dr. Konstantin Frank and Hermann Wiemer, delve into the importance of site specificity, as keen here or even more so than anywhere else on planet wine, and open the discussion of hybrids (and native American vines) and their sustainable merits, among other enlightening subjects.
The Thieves welcome a round table  of special guests: Kelby Russel of Red Newt, Meaghan Frank of Dr. Konstantin Frank Wines, Dave Breeden of Sheldrake Point and John Wagner of Wagner Vineyards to help navigate the waters of the surprisingly vast Finger Lakes AVA (1 million acres!) and its sub-AVAs, Seneca and Cayuga Lakes. The Loire, Alsace, Mosel and Burgundy are all referenced in attempt to contextualize Finger Lakes wine styles. Sara and John also tap into some historical similarities to the neighbouring Niagara wine region of Ontario. You won’t want to miss this week’s acid-driven episode of Wine Thieves!