Old Field is a really charming place, with a rustic feel. In the summer, you can stand on the deck outside the tasting room or sit at a picnic table surrounded by trees and look at the chickens running around (they sometimes have eggs for sale) and the old barn buildings. The tables are covered with calico tablecloths, decorated with pretty wildflower bouquets. In the winter we have had fascinating conversations with the owner about the history of the farm and the ghosts that sometimes haunt it! This time we are here with our son after an afternoon on the water. They offer three tastings: 3 whites for $4, 4 reds for $6, or a mixed tasting of 5 for $7. The servers know a lot about the wines and are fun to talk with. Actually, almost every time we come here we end up in interesting conversations, one time with two women who were bicycling from the South Fork, across Shelter Island, and through some of the wineries. The North Fork is great for bicycling, by the way, with good bike routes and mostly level ground.
1) 2009 Chardonnay $20
This is a mostly steel fermented chard, but some of it spends a short time in oak. The aroma is lemon and apricot, and the flavor is pleasant, typically chardonnay.
2) 2009 Barrel Chardonnay $25
This one has been through malolactic fermentation, and is definitely more assertive than the first white. It is creamy but not too buttery.
3) Rooster Tail $18
We’ve often bought this red by the case, as it is a good table wine and goes well with lots of meats, especially with lamb. The aroma is berry, and the flavor black cherry/plum.
4) Cacklin Rose 2009 $18
Chickens–cacklin–Rosey–rose–You should be humming a tune right now if you’re of a certain age. Anyway, this is a good rose, with aromas of strawberry and watermelon and some melony sweetness, though the finish is rather sharp.
5) Cabernet Franc 2007 $32
This one is similar to a Pinot, with an aroma of mixed berries and some mineral. Not a sipping wine, but would be good with food, with enough tannins to stand up to steak. Good!
6) 2005 Merlot $25
The Merlot was aged 24 months in French oak, and does have the typical earthy aroma of North Fork Merlots, though not unpleasantly so. The flavor is also somewhat earthy, and we decide it would be great with roasted portobello mushrooms for some reason. The finish is dry.
7) 2004 Merlot $22
This one spent 30 months in oak, and the aroma strangely reminds us of hot pepper jelly! The flavor also has some sweet pepper notes and a bit of mustiness.
Reasons to visit: really rustic setting–barns! ducks! chickens!; Rooster Tail red wine, worth buying by the case for an everyday red; laid-back feeling; sometimes you can buy eggs, too.