Last fall, my brother and his wife rented a waterfront house in New York's Finger Lakes region, where I went to college, and my husband and I joined them for a weekend of hiking, enjoying the colorful foliage and, of course, tasting at wineries.
We made a point of stopping at wineries I hadn't visited before, including Anthony Road—one of the area's best producers—on the west side of Seneca Lake. My favorites were from the top-of-the-line Martini Reinhardt Selection series, and I purchased the Riesling (James Molesworth recently wrote about the 2005) and the 2006 Vignoles Berry Selection, made from hand-selected grapes that had developed botrytis. The hybrid Vignoles variety has high natural acidity that counters the wine's 14.5 percent residual sugar.
Last week, I wanted something sweet to top off dinner, and discovered I still had the bottle of Vignoles. Colored orange-gold, the wine was rich and viscous, evoking dried apricot, honey, candied orange peel, golden raisins, baked apples and pumpkin pie spices. Though intensely sweet, it remained lively and finished juicy and fresh. 90 points, non-blind. A wonderful way to end a meal, reminiscing about a great trip and thinking ahead to another one.
Wine Spectator.com members: Read the original blind-tasting review for Anthony Road Vignoles Finger Lakes Berry Selection Martini Reinhardt Selection 2006 (89, $45).
• Plus, check out James Molesworth's Tasting Highlights on 25 of the latest noteworthy red, white and rosé releases from the Finger Lakes.