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Screen Shot 2015-02-05 at 3.57.31 PMWhenever someone grows wine in a region like Virginia where it is very difficult to get the heat and dryness to get good grapes, that person is putting their life and finances on the line. Whenever a person decided to grow a grape varietal that isn’t really known in the new world and in an area that is already having difficulties, that person is super passionate and possibly crazed.

But for the ones who get to taste their trials and tribulations, we rejoice at the fact that they spent the money, researched the rootstock, planted the grapes, waited 3 years and then finally made some wine.

The grape Lemberger is mostly known in Austria and almost nowhere else. That brings us to the 2012 Ox-Eye Vineyards Lemberger from Staunton, Virginia in the Shenandoah Valley. I have previously reviewed a rose from Virginia that has Lemberger in it and a Austrian cuvee with Lemberger (by it’s Austrian name) in it.

Obviously, this will not tell me what a true red Lemberger from Virginia will be like. I got this bottle from a winery up the road that was waiting on their wine labels to be approved and in the mean time sold other local Virginia wines. Ox-Eye has a very basic WordPress site and here are the few notes that they have from the winery’s website:

  • Lemberger  2012  Silver Medal 2014 Finger Lakes International Wine Competition Dry  Full-bodied with nuances of ripe cherry, raspberry, and mocha. Pairs with grilled meats and smoked salmon, among other things. Lots of other things.
    $20.00

So how was it?

Color – Ruby red with some notes of purple.

Nose – Luscious black currant and fig. Lots of fruit.

Taste – Plum, black pepper, and leather.

Finish – Medium to long with medium acid and supple smooth rounded tannins.

Overall, this is a very good wine. It is complex and has fantastic tannins that leave you wanting more. It is mostly fruit-forward but has some earthiness on taste as well. The nose is really bright and almost any red lover would love this. I highly recommend trying this one.

Rating: A-

~Justin