One Woman Wines & Vineyard: For True Wine Lovers May 20, 2018

https://www.onewomanwines.com/

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This is the tiny tasting shack for One Woman wines.

The conversations in the tiny tasting shack—a repurposed 19th century tool shed—were all about wines and wineries.  The knowledgeable and interested server had plenty to contribute to the discussion.  He recognized us from our last visit, a year ago, and was enthusiastic about sharing his love for One Woman’s wines.  As we’ve noted in the past, every new vintage brings changes, in this case both in how the wines taste and in what wines are on the menu.  We learned that, since she started, Claudia Purita, the one woman behind One Woman, has increased her acreage of vines from seventeen to thirty.  (Actually, given the active participation of her daughter, maybe she should change the name to two women!)  Her daughter encouraged her to add Chenin Blanc to her line-up, a good choice in our opinion.

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Heed the warning on this sign. They mean it! No big groups without an appointment.

Our first topic of discussion was the rather draconian sign outside the property, adamantly insisting on no groups over six and no limos or buses.  However, once you have been there it is clear that the place is too small to accommodate large groups, though you can make an appointment to come before the opening time.  Given the quality of the wines, it is worth heeding their warning, and coming with just a few people.

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A tasting consists of your choice of two, three, or four wines for $6, $8, or $10.  In the past, two tastings of four each would have covered all their offerings, but there are also three Reserve wines, for $4 per taste, and five limited production wines which are not available for tasting.  The pour is moderate, so the two of us felt comfortable sharing two tastings, covering all eight of their standard choices.  Wines are also available by the glass, at prices ranging from $10-$15 each.

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  1. 2017 One Woman Rosé                            $26

Now that Croteaux has had to close their tasting room and garden, due to some issues with the town of Southold, we are on the lookout for a rosé we like as much as we like theirs.  This one is in their category of light, tart, yet fruity rosés, with tastes of strawberry and raspberry, so we may return to buy a bottle or two.  It is made primarily from merlot, with some pinot noir and dolcetto grapes as well.  Our server informs us that they are the only winery on Long Island with dolcetto grapes, which they primarily use as a “blending grape.”

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The Sauvignon Blanc and the Rose, our first tastes. We like the view out the back window.

  1. 2016 Sauvignon Blanc $32

This is not as citrusy as some sauvignon blancs we’ve had, but is more minerally and vegetal, with an asparagus aroma.  (Asparagus is in season, and we’ve been buying it every week from the farmstands, which may be one reason why we thought we smelled it!)  Very light, it would be better with food, perhaps a delicate fish or seafood dish, than sipped on its own.

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Usually there are flowers inside as well, but I guess it is early in the season.

  1. 2016 Chenin Blanc $35

This is the first time they’ve offered chenin blanc, with only 50 cases produced.  There was some discussion of the fact that chenin blanc can vary greatly in taste, depending on the terroir and how the grape is treated.  Though One Woman’s chenin is steel fermented, it has a bit of the mouth feel of an oaked wine.  The aroma is a little funky, but the wine itself is light and pleasant.

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I meant to ask about the “antipasto platter” on the sign, but got sidetracked. I would say that charcuterie would be a good snack with the whites.

  1. 2016 Grüner Veltliner $26

The Grüner Veltliner is their signature wine, both because no one else on Long Island produces this wine and because it is quite good.  When a couple came in and asked to taste just one wine, this was the one the server suggested.  Good idea.  We really liked it, and bought two bottles.  It has a sweet flowery aroma, like honeysuckle, but it is not sweet.  We taste citrus and gooseberry and some minerality.  The taste is complex, with also some notes of spice.  “White pepper?” suggests our server.  “Awesome,” say I.  If we can keep it that long, I may serve it with our Thanksgiving turkey (which I would buy from 8 Hands farm again, since last year’s was delicious).

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  1. 2015 Gewürztraminer $28

We get to taste this side by side with the 2016, and the comparison shows once again how important vintage is.  The aroma is somewhat typically flowery, maybe orange flower, with some pine, too.  The taste is delicious, with just a touch of sweetness.  It is fruitier than the 2016 Gewürztraminer, but also has plenty of minerality to balance it.  There is some discussion of the effect of salt spray, from our maritime setting, on the grapes.  This is a wine that would be nice to drink with something moderately spicy, but could also be sipped on its own.

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Two gewürztraminers, side by side tasting.

  1. 2016 Gewürztraminer $28

Though the aroma is similar, this one’s smell is more complex, with a touch of funkiness.  The wine is dryer, more austere, with less fruitiness.  The finish is shorter and the legs are longer!  I prefer the 2015, but I can see how some might like the 2016 more.

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Two chardonnays–you can see the color is slightly different.

  1. 2015 Chardonnay $26

Aged partly in steel and the rest in oak, this is a nice, not too buttery chardonnay.  It is dry, with some citrus and minerality and tastes of vanilla and almonds.

  1. 2013 Estate Reserve Chardonnay $38

“Would you like to try the Estate Reserve Chardonnay?” asks our server.  Oh sure. I never turn down an offer like that!  This one is aged for sixteen months in new French oak, and is definitely for those who like the California style of buttery chardonnays.  Not my preference.

  1. 2014 Merlot $40

A fairly typical North Fork merlot, this is aged eighteen months.  It has aromas of dark fruit and olives, is dry, and could be fruitier.  I would say, based just on this wine, that whites are definitely One Woman’s strong suit.

  1. 2012 Estate Reserve Merlot $48

On the other hand, the Estate Reserve Merlot is delicious!  This is another extra taste, and I’m glad we tried it.  The taste is more like a cabernet sauvignon than a merlot, I think, and our server agrees.  It has plenty of tannins and could use more aging, so we buy a bottle to label 2020 for the wine cellar.  This is an interesting wine, with lots of dark fruit tastes, and would go well with lamb.

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If Claudia Purita’s daughter is there, say hello. She’s lively and fun to talk with.

Reasons to visit:  you really like wine and would like to chat about it with someone who shares your enthusiasm; the intimate setting; it is a bit off the beaten track—on a side road off Sound Avenue—so in general those who come here are here for the wines; the Gewürztraminer, the Grüner Veltliner, the Estate Reserve Merlot, the rosé; off in the field you can see the cows, from whose milk Frank Purita will be making his excellent gelato, accompanied by Freddie the bull.

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One warning–these are the “facilities.”

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One Woman Wines and Vineyard: Happy to be Back April 29, 2017

https://www.onewomanwines.com/

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Somehow we had let more than a year elapse before our return to one of our favorite wineries, so we were delighted to come back to One Woman.  One of the servers was happy to see us back, as well, remembering that we had come before in the fall!  That personal touch is no surprise at this tiny winery, which is very much the work of one woman, Claudia Purita, who, according to her web site, is totally hands on in the vineyard and the winery.  Her devotion shows in the wines, which are all well worth seeking out.

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Some ad hoc entertainment.

Out on the porch, a large group was celebrating what seemed to be one person’s birthday, and had arrived in a huge RV.  A friend of the winery serenaded them with his guitar.  They had made a reservation, which was fortunate, because the winery is very firm about no groups larger than six without a reservation.  Our friend the server urged us to come in the summer, when they have bonfires and movies on Saturday nights.  The tasting menu offers various options, and we decided to share four tastes for $10, forgoing tastes of the chardonnays and the rosé.

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The menu offers various options.

  1. 2015 Tribute     $26

A blend of all their white grapes—chenin blanc, chardonnay, grüner veltliner, and gewürztraminer—this is a perfect warm weather wine, great for sipping chilled.  It has a flowery aroma of honeysuckle and peach, and also has some peach tastes, as well as a lovely minerality.

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  1. 2015 Grüner Veltliner    $26

At the moment, they are the only winery on Long Island with this grape, though our server told us that Macari has planted some, so they may be producing a grüner too.  It smells fruity, maybe like gooseberries.  The taste is mouthwatering, dry, with some mineral and stone.  It would be good with a rich chicken dish, like a creamy casserole.  It is steel fermented.

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  1. 2015 Gewürztraminer                  $28

Mmm.  Smells so good.  Flowers, fruits, vegetables.  Delicious!  I think this may be the best gewürztraminer on Long Island, dry yet with lots of fruit taste.  The server takes pains to point out that it only has 1% residual sugar, since some people think all the fruitiness means it is sweet.  We also taste minerals and salt.  It would be great to sip, but would also pair well with food.  Our other server notes it is perfect for Thanksgiving—so we buy two bottles just in case we have turkey some time soon.

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  1. 2013 Merlot      $38

This is aged in new French oak for 18 months, and has the typical cherry flavor of local merlots.  Light and dry, with good tannins, this might benefit from further aging.

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An aerial photo shows the extent of the vineyards.

Reasons to visit:  a bunch of excellent wines; an intimate setting off the beaten track; the Tribute, the Grüner Veltliner, the Gewürztraminer.  Because we bought two bottles of wine, our tasting was free.

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One Woman Wines and Vineyards: A One-Woman Show? August 31, 2014

http://www.onewomanwines.com/

Busses actually means kisses, but my guess is they're referring to the vehicles.

Busses actually means kisses, but my guess is they’re referring to the vehicles.

It seems One Woman has been discovered.  Last year we basically had the place to ourselves, but this year it was fairly full, including hipsters in straw fedoras stepping up to the bar in the tiny tasting barn.  Yet the youthful servers managed everyone with aplomb, including our server, a young man who kept careful track of where we were and managed to share observations on each wine while also taking care of several other groups.  (For comments on the one woman whose winery this is, see my entry from last August.)

One Woman has expanded its list of offerings, but they still have the only Grüner Veltliner around, and that alone is worth the trip.  Large signs outside warn that buses (spelled busses, which actually means kisses!) and limos are verboten, as well as groups of more than six.  They really don’t have the facilities for large groups, but if you are a small group this is a good place to taste some lovely wines.  The menu offers two tastes for $6, three for $8, or four for $10, out of a list of eight wines.  You can also sample the Reserve wines, a menu of four for $14 (or one for $4).  What does Reserve mean?  Here it means the grapes have spent about another two weeks on the vines for a fuller flavor and that the grapes have also been hand-picked one by one with a tweezer-like implement by Claudia Purita (the One Woman) herself.  We decided to share four from the regular menu plus the four Reserves.

Part of the outside area.

Part of the outside area.

  1. 2013 Grüner Veltliner                    $20

“I’ll start you off with the 2013,” says our server, “since it is the lightest of your choices.”  And he is right.  We scent a bit of honeysuckle, taste some roast pear. Tart and light. Though this is purely steel fermented, we could swear we taste oak.  Our server chuckles and says that is common.

  1. 2012 Grüner Veltliner              $20

What a difference a year makes!  I love this one!  Our server calls it “a white for red wine lovers,” and I can see why.  It is deep and full of flavor, with some toasted caramel notes.  Again, hard to believe this is all steel fermented.  This is also a great pairing to show people why the year and how the wines were handled matters.

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  1. 2012 Gewürztraminer      $23

Very floral aromas, including some lavender, introduce a rather tart gewurzt.  0% residual sugar, notes our server, who also suggests this would pair well with Thai food.  My husband compares it to sour apple candy, and I get it.

  1. 2013 Gewürztraminer      $23

“Claudia says this is the most typical Gewürztraminer she’s ever made,” says our server.  “It has 3% residual sugar.”  It is certainly sweeter than the 2012, with an aroma of thyme honey and lavender and some gooseberry tastes.  A bit too sweet for us, though not unpleasantly so.

  1. 2011 Estate Reserve Chardonnay      $32

Very oaky, which is not surprising given that it is completely oak-fermented.  We smell vanilla and those scented pine cones you can sometimes buy in the fall.  We taste a touch of citrus, but then the oak takes over.  If you like a California-style oaky chardonnay, this is for you.

The pour is about average in size.

The pour is about average in size.

  1. 2010 Estate Reserve Merlot      $48

Our first red of the tasting, the merlot is nice but not all that interesting.  A bit of forest scent, blackberry tastes, fairly soft, and the end is a bit too oaky and tart.

Dessert wine

Dessert wine

  1. 2008 Estate Reserve Merlot      $48

The smell reminds me of a cabin on a lake—that slightly damp smell of exposed wood. This has more to it than the ’10, with nice legs. The server describes the scent as smoked paprika, but I don’t get that.

  1. Estate Reserve Dessert Wine       $39

Okay, so it’s not as good as Chateau D’Yquem, but it’s pretty nice.  I would drink this with paté de foie gras any day!  Or even a chocolate mousse.  It is quite delicious, made with late harvest Gewürztraminer grapes.

The tasting barn

We decide to buy two bottles of the 2012 Grüner Veltliner.  Because at the crucial moment of the end of our tasting our server was distracted, and took a little while to get back to us, he doesn’t charge us for the tastings, a nice courtesy.

Reasons to Visit:  Long Island’s first, and possibly still only, Grüner Veltliner; tasting some nice wines in a peacefully bucolic setting; the Gewürztraminers; the dessert wine; oh, and you can buy D’Latte gelato from a little freezer case.

We've been told in the past that Claudia Purita even arranges the flowers.

We’ve been told in the past that Claudia Purita even arranges the flowers.