When I think of exciting grapes currently being experimented with in the Finger Lakes and Niagara Wine countries, there are three or four that get my blood flowing. The first is Syrah. Not those jammified Syrahs that you can find anywhere. I'm talking about cool climate ones that combine good acidity with pepper and light tannins.
The other two grapes are the Austrian grapes Gruner Veltliner, Blaufrankisch, and Zweigelt. Spelling them is tough enough let alone pronouncing them. I know Hermann Wiemer is growing Blaufrankisch and Gruner Veltliner, funny enough cause I picked up a couple of each last time I visited the winery. Currently I believe they are just blending grapes in his arsenal. I've tried Lemberger, our not much friendlier name for Blaufrankisch, from Fox Run Vineyards, Goosewatch, and Seneca Shore Vineyards in the Finger Lakes. The latter of the three was surprisingly my favorite. As for Zweigelt, a cross of St. Laurent and Blaufrankisch, I know Konzelmann Winery in Ontario makes it as well as a few others wineries in Canada.
All this wine geek banter takes me to my point and the reason I got excited enough to update my site while I run around in circles of sh*t to do in my new country home. The New York Times done did an article and an interactive feature on Zweigelt and Blaufrankisch the other day. Cheers to that. The reviews were obviously Austria intensive as they should have been, while fascinating at the same time. Too bad I'm not in NYC anymore cause I don't think I'll find these wines in my area. So if you can, try some of them for me.