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The Best Wines In New Jersey

At a blind taste test held at Blue Morel restaurant in Morristown, seven wine experts and one intrepid reporter sat down to determine the best wines in New Jersey. After trying 52 wines from 26 wineries, they selected these vintages as the best of the best.

Posted February 15, 2012

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Not only does cream rise to the top, the best examples of the vintner’s art do as well. Of 52 wines our panel sampled, many had merit, many had character, but only these had enough to win our gold and silver awards.

Cabernet Sauvignon


Gold:   Amalthea Cellars Outer Coastal Plain Cabernet Sauvignon, 2008
Retail price: $25
Tasting Note: A complex nose of blackberry, dark plum and vanilla, followed by a silky feel on the palate.
Winery: 209 Vineyard Road, Atco (856-768-8585; amaltheacellars.com)

Silver:    Cape May Winery & Vineyard OCP Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve, 2008 
Retail price: $24
Tasting Note: A pleasant aroma of cherry and herbs, followed by flavors of blackberry with a touch of spice.
Winery: 711 Townbank Road, Cape May (609-884-1169; capemaywinery.com)

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Merlot

Gold:    Valenzano Winery OCP Merlot, 2009
Retail price: $16
Tasting Note: This wine is true to the grape and has a nose of plum and ripe fruit.
Winery: 1090 Route 206, Shamong (609-268-6731; valenzanowine.com)

Silver:    Auburn Road Vineyard & Winery Merlot Reserve, 2008
Retail price: $24.99
Tasting Note: Well balanced with medium-bodied texture, this wine is aged in American oak and has flavors of vanilla and cherry.
Winery: 117 Sharptown-Auburn Road, Pilesgrove (856-769-WINE; auburnroadvineyards.com)



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Cabernet Franc

Gold:    Amalthea Cellars OCP Cabernet Franc, 2006
Retail price: $25
Tasting Note:  An enjoyable wine with plum and subtle oak flavors.
Winery: 209 Vineyard Road, Atco (856-768-8585; amaltheacellars.com)

Silver:
   Four JG’s Vineyards OCP Cabernet Franc, 2008
Retail price: $18
Tasting Note:  This wine has slight earth and sweet-oak characteristics.
Winery: 127 Hillsdale Road, Colts Neck (908-930-8066; 4jgswinery.com)




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Other Red

Gold:    Valenzano Winery OCP  Cabernet/Merlot, 2010
Retail price: $10
Tasting Note:  A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc, this wine has a touch of oak, blueberry and blackberry flavors.
Winery: 1090 Route 206, Shamong (609-268-6731; valenzanowine.com)

Silver:   Plagido’s Winery OCP Chambourcin
Retail price: $16
Tasting Note: This full-bodied wine has a pleasant texture and distinct spicy and gamey flavors.
Winery: 570 N. First Road, Hammonton (609-567-4633; plagidoswinery.com)

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Chardonnay

Gold:    Cape May Winery & Vineyard OCP Barrel Fermented Chardonnay, 2010
Retail price: $20
Tasting Note:  Tropical fruit and pear on both the nose and palate, this wine is well balanced, with bright acidity.
Winery: 711 Townbank Road, Cape May (609-884-1169; capemaywinery.com)

Silver:   Hawk Haven Vineyard & Winery OCP Chardonnay, 2010
Retail price: $17
Tasting Note: An elegant Chardonnay with apple and pear notes.
Winery: 600 S. Railroad Avenue, Rio Grande (609-846-7347; hawkhavenvineyard.com)



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Other White

Gold:    Bellview Winery OCP  Traminette, 2010
Retail price: $12
Tasting Note: An aromatic and palate-pleasing wine with plenty of flavors, including floral notes and lychee fruit.
Winery: 150 Atlantic Street, Landisville (856-697-7172; bellviewwinery.com)

Silver:
  Old York Cellars Pinot Gris, 2010
Retail price: $17.50
Tasting Note:  This wine has a fresh nose of peach, a taste of tangerine rind, and balanced acidity, with a long finish of pleasant fruit flavors.
Winery: 80 Old York Road, Ringoes (908-284-9463; oldyorkcellars.com)

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Fruit Wine

Gold:    Plagido’s Winery Cranberry Wine
Retail price: $15
Tasting Note:  Pleasing and well balanced, the wine is true to the fruit, with a tart cranberry taste.
Winery: 570 N. First Road, Hammonton (609-567-4633; plagidoswinery.com)

Silver:   Four Sisters Winery Mia’s Blueberry, 2010
Retail price: $14
Tasting Note: This blueberry wine has perfectly balanced components of sweetness, acidity and fresh blueberry flavor.
Winery: 783 Route 519, Belvidere (908-475-3671; foursisterswinery.com)

 

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Comments
Best Wines in NJ

While I have my personal favorites (Sugar Plum from Heritages), Plagido’s Cranberry Wine is THE BEST Cranberry wine I have ever had. There are a few of us who think they MUST be included in the NJ Cranberry Festival, as they use NJ Cranberries to make such a wonderful wine. They use the best to make the best!

Posted by: WENDY C HELMS, WEST DEPTFORD | Feb 24, 2012 07:06:37 AM |



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