Long Island is noted for its wonderful wineries and vineyards on the North Fork, with some also located on the South Fork. It's said that Long Island's East End features a micro-climate similar to that of Bordeaux, France, and the wines produced here reflect that. But what if you can't afford to buy an expensive bottle of wine? No problem. There are many affordable Long Island wines that you and your guests will enjoy. Please drink responsibly and never drink and drive. Here's a sampling of some of the many delicious, affordable wines produced on Long Island.
23005 Main Road
2. Macari Vineyards & WineryThis vineyard and winery is dedicated to a more natural approach to winemaking. Try their Early Wine Chardonnay for $16.99/bottle, their Sette (a blend of 50 percent Merlot and 50 percent Cabernet Franc) for $16.99/bottle, or one of their excellent Rosés for $14.99.
Macari Vineyards & Winery
150 Bergen Avenue
3. Shinn Estate VineyardsThe grapes on this sustainably farmed vineyard are grown in all-organic soil without chemical fertilizers. They harvest and ferment their selections separately, blending them into a finished wine after many blending trials. Their oak comes from a number of different forests and give unique aging characteristics to each wine. Try their 2006 Estate Merlot for $23/bottle. The wine is a blend of 95 percent Merlot and 5 percent Malbec, and carries the aromas of chocolate, coffee and vanilla.
Shinn Estate Vineyards
2000 Oregon Road
4. Lieb Family CellarsLieb produces two lines of wine. Bridge Lane is their line of great value wines. their Bridge Lane Chardonnay is 100 percent steel fermented, and costs $16. Lieb Cellars' Bridge Lane Merlot is just $15/bottle.
Lieb Family Cellars
Tasting Room at 35 Cox Neck Road
5. Laurel Lake VineyardsAlthough it's the fourth oldest vineyard on the North Fork, Laurel Lake has one of the newest and most modern winery buildings. Their light and fruity, dry wine, Wind Song Red, is just $11.99 a bottle. And their crisp 2006 Chardonnay sells for $14.99.
Laurel Lake Vineyards
3165 Main Road (Route 25)
6. Jamesport VineyardsAt the 2008 N.Y. Food & Wine Classic, Jamesport Vineyards won a Silver Medal for its 2006 East End Cinq with its dark fruit aromas, but you can buy it for the bargain price of $15.95 per bottle. "Cinq" means "five" in French, and the wine is made from a a blend of five grape varietals: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Pinot Noir and Syrah. This excellent wine sells for only $15.95.
Main Road, Route 25
7. Baiting Hollow Farm VineyardAmong its many wines, Baiting Hollow Farm Vineyard produces, one good value is their Red Table Wine, a blend of 70 percent Cabernet Franc, 25 percent Merlot and 5 percent Cabernet Sauvignon. It's aged in older oak barrels, and features a bright cherry fruit aroma. Great with burgers or pizza, this wine sells for $14.99.
Baiting Hollow Farm Vineyard
2114 Sound Avenue
One excellent wine that is also affordable is Corey Creek Rosé , a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. It retails for $9-13 a bottle.
Bedell North Fork, LLC.
36225 Main Road (Route 25)
9. Bouké WinesSituated on the North Fork of Long Island, Bouké Wines offers a number of excellent blends. Among these is their affordable, dry and crisp 2008 Bouké Rosé, with a blend of 74 percent Cabernet Sauvignon and 26 percent Merlot. The wine is soft and round, with both volume and a lingering finish. It sells for $16/bottle. Bouké staff say that their 2008 Bouké Rosé pairs well with roasted portobello mushrooms, hummus and pita bread, salmon, barbecued chicken or spicy crab cakes.
35 Cox Neck Road
10. Sparkling PointeIn the mood for some champagne, but don't want to spend a lot of money? Then try a champagne alternative made right here on Long Island's North Fork, using traditional French methods. Opened in 2008, Sparkling Pointe, as its name implies, produces only sparkling wines. These bubbly wines have already won awards and are now served at the Waldorf=Astoria's Peacock Alley. For those on a budget, try Sparkling Pointe 2004 Brut for $29/bottle.
39750 County Road 48
11. Waters CrestThis winery on the North Fork is family-owned and operated, and features small-production, award-winning wines. If you're looking for a good wine at an affordable price, try their first Sauvignon Blanc, produced in 2008. This crisp wine has a fragrant bouquet of grapefruit. Only 100 cases were produced. The 2008 Sauvignon Blanc retails for $19.99.
22355 Route 48
12. Croteaux VineyardsThese vineyards were planted in 2003 on a 14-acre site in Southold. The fruit is harvested by hand to ensure as little damage as possible to the vines and for more quality control. Their 2007 Croteaux Merlot 181 Rosé is served at the North Fork Table & Inn, in Southold. You can buy this elegant wine with its honeysuckle aroma for only $18/bottle.
1450 South Harbor Road