Saturday, August 2, 2014

#VirtualVines with Old York Cellars & Hometown Heroes

This past week Old York Cellars hosted another #VirtualVines online tasting featuring their What Exit Wine brand: a Jersey-centric line of wines that raised $5.000 for the Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund. The winery has now turned their philanthropy support to Hometown Heroes, where $1 from each $18 What Exit White, Red, & Blush Wine where be donated to the charity. During the  #VirtualVines, Old York winemaker Scott Gares and Sommelier Laurin Dorman were joined by Hometown Heroes President & Founder, Mike Schwartz, to discuss wine and the charity's goals. The embedded video below describes the organization.

Photo courtesy of Old York Cellars
During the session Gares also answered questions on the current harvest and the affect of Sandy at the winery. During the hurricane, most of the grapes had already been harvested, but blocks of Malbec were sitting in the press when the winery lost power. The juice sat on it's skins for eight days - fortunately it was Malbec. Gares also had to use generators to operate punch downs for juice in fermenting tanks. As for this year, the cool, but dry summer will lead to an early harvest; the grapes are accumulating high concentrations of sugar already.

On to the wine, we started with the What Exit White, a 90-10 blend of Chenin Blanc and Cayuga White. It is completely dry, with a floral-apple nose with some decent depth on the palette. The finish is clean and acidic. The What Exit Red is a 6-40 blend of Barbara and Merlot. This is a fruit forward wine, with a slightly spicy nose, followed by dark berry flavors and finishing softly with nice acids. Our tasting finished with the What Exit Blush, basically the White with some Cabernet Sauvignon added for color. Thus, it's dark than most rosés, but don't let that full you to think this is a sweet blush. There is only 1% r.s. and it is closer to a Provence-style as it drinks dry with strawberry characters and a refreshing acidic finish.

These are very nice examples of local NJ wine. Remember, $1 from each bottle sold is donated to Hometown heroes and if you use the coupon code HEROES up until August 8th, you receive 20% off of any What Exit Wine. During our #VirtualVines tasting Old York Cellars donated $1 more to the charity for every #VirtualVines tweet that night. $300 was raised; good for them. Cheers.

Hometown Heroes is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization whose main purpose is to foster an environment of goodwill, generosity, and encouragement by supporting local communities in times of crisis. We provide assistance with meeting unexpected needs in our communities, and do not discriminate based on ethnicity, gender, or age. The organization provides an opportunity for all of us to give back to our neighbors through professional services, financial help, and advocacy. Hometown Heroes assists those in need to find solutions to problems that appear overwhelming. Our non profit has supported our neighbors through the Restore the Shore campaign, as well as providing assistance for individuals facing homelessness, domestic abuse, drug addiction, disability, and more.

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