Northeast Pennsylvania Wineries Deliver Award-winning Wines

November 7, 2018

France’s St.-Joseph Offers Quality Rhône Wines At Lower Cost

Because of their limited availability, local wines don’t often appear in this space. However, I’ve always been supporter of local wineries, and some make world-class wines.

A recent visit to three of the pioneering local wineries offered a chance to check in.

Everyone who knows Sal Maiolatesi knows he prefers dry wines. But he puts the same care in making sweet and fruit wines as he does dry ones. He needs sweeter wines on his tasting sheet to accommodate tasting room visitors, tourists and attendees of events at the seemingly ever-expanding Scott Twp. facility. Using an otherwise forgettable wine grape, chancellor, and blending it with fruit results in fresh, authentically tasting wine that avoids the pitfall of cloying sweetness. Try Maiolatesi Blueberry Chancellor. $14. ★★★★

Nimble Hill Vineyard & Winery 2017 Toczko Vineyards Riesling takes a step in an elegant, refined direction. Made from the oldest block of Nimble’s own estate vines in Mehoopany, now more than 10 years old, the wine smells of white flower and tastes of delicate lime and pear with minerality, balanced with a satisfying acidity that belies the posted 3 percent residual sugar. An accurate approximation of an Alsatian riesling, this wine last month was named “Best of Show” in the 2018 Pennsylvania Sommelier Judgment. $17. ★★★★ 1/2

For a fruit salad in a glass, try Grovedale Winey North Branch White made from a hearty hybrid grape called la crescent that bursts with citrus and pineapple. While it certainly is sweet, the wine has solid acids that keep it from having a heavy finish. The result is an ideal sipping wine that just earned the “Best Hybrid Wine” honor in the American Wine Society Commercial Wine Competition. $15. ★★★★ 1/2

GRADE: Exceptional , Above average , Good , Below average , Poor .

DAVID FALCHEK, executive director of the American Wine Society, reviews wines each week.

Update hourly