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Rooster Hill Announced Theme Months

Rooster Hill Vineyards in Penn Yan will feature fine wines each month during the heart of the 2008 tasting season. Starting with Chardonnays in April and finishing with Lembergers in September, each month at the winery will include tastings of the featured wines and a chance to learn more about the different varieties. The chosen wines are grown in the Finger Lakes and around the world. In addition to receiving some wine education, visitors will have the opportunity to take “vertical flights,’’ tasting different years’ vintages of the same type of wine. The theme month spotlight will be turned on in April with Chardonnays and continue through September:APRIL: Sip a Chardonnay on a spring day America’s No. 1-selling white wine, Chardonnay remains popular throughout this country and the world. Rooster Hill Vineyard’s 2006 Chardonnay is getting high praise from Wine Enthusiast Magazine, which will feature the local wine in its April issue. The 2006 Rooster Hill Chardonnay is rich with layers of lemon, grapefruit and buttered toast aromas and flavors that mingle on the palate. Smoky oak, vanilla, and hazelnut linger in the background. It is creamy and full and ends with a honey finish. MAY: A Riesling to celebrate May is Riesling month. Rieslings trace their roots back to vines in Germany in the 15th century. Today, Finger Lakes wineries make some of the world’s finest and most distinctive Rieslings, including Rooster Hill’s 2006 Estate Semi Dry Riesling. This wine was named in October as a Top 10 Riesling in North America at the Hyatt International Riesling Challenge in Canberra, Australia.JUNE: Life is a Cabernet … and Meritage Cabernet Sauvignon is the most highly prized of the Cabernet grapes and one of the world’s most widely planted varieties. It is the biggest wine in Bordeaux and the most successful red wine in California. Previously thought to be an ancient variety, the grape is actually a hybrid offspring of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc. Rooster Hill offers a Cabernet Sauvignon, a Cabernet Franc and a Cabernet Franc Reserve, all from 2003. The Cabernet Franc Reserve won a silver medal at the Florida State Fair in 2005. Meritage rhymes with heritage and is a combination of the words “merit’’ and “heritage.’’ The word was coined in 1989 to define Bordeaux blends of grapes done on non-French soil. Red Meritages must be blends of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot. White Meritages, which are less common, must contain Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon and Muscadelle.JULY: Enjoy Gewurztraminer and Traminette and don’t worry about the spelling Gewurztraminer is a cold-climate grape that makes a most aromatic white wine. Its name comes from the German word Gewurz, which means “spiced,’’ and Traminer, a green-skinned grape that gets its name from the Italian village of Tramin. Places where Gewurztraminer is now produced include France, Germany, Italy – and the Finger Lakes. Traminette is a spicy, flavorful white wine that shares characteristics with a famous parent, Gewurztraminer. The result of a 1965 cross between Seyval Blanc and Gewürztraminer at the University of Illinois, the grape was named and bred in Geneva at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station. It was released by the Cornell University-affiliated station in 1996.AUGUST: Drink in the Pinot Noir Mystery A complex wine that stirs the passions of its fans, Pinot Noir received high praise from connoisseur-characters in the 2004 movie Sideways. Pinot Noir is one of the oldest wine varieties to be cultivated for wine and was enjoyed by the Romans. It’s called the “heartache grape’’ because it is difficult to grow and process, but Pinots pair well with many foods and are rich in resveratrol, which is reputed to boost the immune system, protect against heart disease and prolong people’s lives. Pinots are now grown in regions around the world, including Oregon, California, New Zealand, Australia, Germany, Italy and, of course, the Finger Lakes. SEPTEMBER: Lemberger – It’s not the cheese Although its name sounds like a particularly pungent type of cheese, the Lemberger wine of the Finger Lakes region and Washington State is typically light and fruity with a deep red color. Lemberger has carved out small niche markets in the Finger Lakes and Washington, and is also produced in Europe. The wine is known by many names: Limberger in Germany; Blaufrankisch in Austria; Kekfrankos in Hungary; and Franconia in the Friuli region of Italy.Rooster Hill is located at 489 Route 54 south of Penn Yan. In April, the winery is open Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. From May through October, Rooster Hill is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Hours in November and December are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. The winery is closed January through March.For more information about the theme months or the wines crafted at Rooster Hill, call (315) 536-4773 or e-mail info@roosterhill.com.

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