June 2, 2023
Strawberries at the farm stands! 83 degrees and sunny! It finally felt like summer, and we decided this warm, breezy afternoon was the perfect time to do a tasting. We had tried Ev & Em (the strange name is the result of Dan Abrams, the owner, wanting to name the winery after his children) in March 2022, when they really weren’t fully open. For one thing, they didn’t yet have their furniture. So we figured by now they’d have it together; and they do.
We were met at the door by a hostess, who escorted us out onto the breezy porch, which has roll-up plastic windows we’ve also seen on boats, and to a table for two. I had asked if we could be seated at a table for four, but she demurred, saying she didn’t know if it was reserved. Really? At 3:30 in the afternoon in the middle of the week? And as it happened, the only other people who entered were a family group with children, who were escorted down the stairs to a table on the lawn, which is apparently the policy. But okay, we were fine.
As we perused the menu—which asserts that this is “where Napa meets the Hamptons” (um, this is not the Hamptons, but okay)—we were served a nice cold bottle of water and two cups. Our waiter appeared, and asked if we had any questions. We discussed the fact that they still have the same winemaker as the winery’s previous iteration, when it was called Laurel Lake, and that there are still a few bottles of Laurel Lake wines around. On the other hand, he noted that this is the first vintage that is really an expression of their wine-making philosophy. As we chatted, I thought he looked familiar, and suddenly he said, “I’ve seen you before! I used to work at One Woman.” Ah ha. It is a small world out here.
There were three flight options available—the Classic Flight, of four wines for $35; the Chocolate Pairing Flight, of four wines and four chocolate truffles for $50; and the Ev&Em2 flight, of four Ev&Em2 wines for $32. We decided to share a Classic flight, with the thought that we might get a glass afterwards of any other wine we wanted to try from their list of eighteen wines. We also ordered a $6 bag of North Fork potato chips (and used the leftover chips to make a delicious omelet the next day from a recipe I found in the New York Times). They also have a variety of cheeses and charcuterie available. Soft pop jazz played in the background as we sipped and chatted.
- 2021 Rosé $32
I expressed surprise at the appearance of the rosé, which is so pale as to look almost like a white wine, or as my tasting buddy said, “You wouldn’t know by looking that it’s a rosé.” Our waiter had me hold the glass against the white of the menu, and then I could see the faint pink tinge. The wine is a blend of sauvignon blanc, chardonnay, gewürztraminer, and pinot noir, so three whites and one red, which must account for how pale it is. It also drinks like a crisp, mineral-y white. It has some complexity, but if you are looking for a fruity rosé, this is not it.
- 2022 Sauvignon Blanc $40
This steel-fermented sauvignon blanc has almost no aroma, and again is a crisp, refreshing wine, though my husband says it is “not exciting.” The menu describes the taste as “gooseberry and grass,” and if you’ve ever chewed on a blade of grass you get that. I think it is sophisticated, and would pair well with charcuterie, but we agree that the price is somewhat out of line for the North Fork.
- 2022 Stainless Steel Chardonnay $40
Another white with lots of minerality, and not much fruit. Maybe white peaches, but no citrus. Pleasant.
- 2021 Pinot Noir $55
Our waiter informs us that this is aged 70% in new oak and 30% in neutral oak. I get lots of minerality again, which seems to be part of their style, with an aroma of eucalyptus and berries. I taste a bit of licorice in this fairly light red. The price? Hmmm…
- 2019 Merlot $40
If you’re keeping count, you can tell that we’ve come to the end of our tasting, but we have plenty of potato chips and time, so we decide we might like a glass of some other wine. I ask our server, who had been properly attentive—as in there when you want him to be, and not when you don’t—which wines he thinks are the best, and he brings us a small taste of this merlot. It is lean, not fruity, with some minerality. I’m not in love with it, so he offers a taste of one more wine.
- 2021 Barrel Fermented Chardonnay $45
He’s a bit chagrined when I say I’m not fond of oaked chards, but this one is fine, not too oaky. It fits the general style here, which is lean, not fruity, and sophisticated.
Reasons to visit: pleasant outdoor porch setting; all the wines if you like them with more minerality than fruit, none if you don’t; nice menu of cheeses and charcuterie. Though my tasting pal says he “wouldn’t go out of my way,” I’d come here again for the nice setting and relaxed vibe. Note: they say on their website that groups including children will be seated down on the lawn.