' Coyote Moon Vineyards - 21 Brix, Coyote Moon Score Big Right out of the Box.
21 Brix, Coyote Moon Score Big Right out of the Box.
News from New York Wine & Grape Foundation

Not so long ago, new New York wineries were a suspect lot based on the quality (or lack thereof) of their wines in their start-up years. No longer, at least for two new wineries that have hit the ground running--fast.

21 Brix Winery (www.21Brix.com), in the Lake Erie region, so far this year has won 33 Gold, Double Gold, Best of Class, or Best of Category medals in major competitions, with its 2011 Vidal Ice Wine winning Best of Class at both Indy and Pacific Rim, along with Best Dessert Wine at Amenti del Vino, while its 2012 Chardonnay won Best of Category at Atlantic Seaboard and the Ellatawba took Best Rose at Long Beach. 21 Brix makes a broad range of wines from Native American, French-American, Cornell, and classic European grape varieties, all of which have won top prizes, demonstrating quality across the board. In addition, young winemaker Kris Kane (a super nice guy) was recently cited by California-based trade publication Wines & Vines as one of America's top 100 wine makers. It also helps that the superb quality grapes come from one of the region's oldest and best vineyards (225 acres), Olde Chautauqua Farms owned by Kris's parents Michael and Marion Jordan, whose other son Brian also is part of the team.
Coyote Moon Vineyards (www.coyotemoonvineyards.com), in the Thousand Islands region, makes wine fun as well as good. Since its opening three years ago, Coyote Moon has won over 600 medals, and this year has already won 32 Gold or above in major competitions. Virtually all of Coyote Moon's wines are made from the relatively new, extremely cold-hardy "Minnesota varieties" like Brianna and LaCrescent (both white), Frontenac and Marquette (reds). They took Best of Class for La Crescent, Fire Boat Red, and Casa Papa Red at San Francisco Chronicle; LaCrescent at Long Beach; Brianna at U.S. National; and Island Mama and Razzle Dazzle Raspberry at Riverside. Their Marquette and Twisted Sister won Best of Category at Atlantic Seaboard.

Owner Phil Randazzo is a veteran marketer from other businesses who understands the value of "branding" and establishing a reputation for quality. In the wine business, entering good wines into serious wine competitions is one major way, especially since it is highly unlikely that the three major consumer-focused wine publications would seriously review new and unfamiliar varietals like Brianna and Marquette, while the trade publications have already done so. Entering competitions requires an investment--but it also provides a great return.

Coyote Moon, like 21 Brix, is a family affair, with Phil's artist wife Mary the label designer, son Tony the general manager, daughter Lori the outside events manager, daughter Kristina (Randazzo) Ives the public relations and marketing manager, and her husband Christian Ives the wine taster an food pairing expert. In addition, both Coyote Moon and 21 Brix also make wine fun, from the fanciful names of their wines to their colorful labels, a giant pink elephant in front of the 21 Brix winery (for whom some wines are named), the howling coyote symbol at Coyote Moon, which also hosts a never-ending series of special events. They're a breath of fresh air from the snobby ambiance so common in the wine industry.
Post By:   Tony Randazzo