Ev & Em:  Summer Is a Coming In

From the outside, it looks like Laurel Lake, but the inside is quite different.

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.

I’m wondering if they’ll add more inside seating in the winter.

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.

In this close-up, you can see the faint pink tinge of the rose.
  • 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.

On this warm afternoon, we really appreciated the nice cool water.
  • 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.

The area where they seat parties including children. Looks comfy!

Suhru Wines: Early Return (Not Election Related)

November 12, 2022

This photo was taken in February, the last time I was here.

Because there are so many wineries on the North Fork, I generally don’t return to one more often than once a year.  However, my daughter and a group of her friends were having a little reunion of their group, and invited me to meet them at Suhru, which I had last been to in February.  How could I resist? 

Suhru was a perfect venue for the six of them (plus me) to get together, since they were able to sit comfortably at a table, the room was cozy and quiet, and the server combined just the right amount of service and letting be.  She started the afternoon off right by bringing us chilled bottles of water and glasses.

I still wasn’t going to blog this visit, but then I saw that the menus, both for drinks and food, had changed, so I fished some scrap paper out of my purse and jotted down a few notes.

The menu of flights has four possibilities:  Holiday Favorites ($19), Whites & Rosé ($14), and Red Wines ($19), each consisting of four tastes.  You could also put together your own four tastes for $19.  As it happened, everyone opted for the Holiday Favorites, with much discussion about who was hosting Thanksgiving and what wines would go with turkey.  We all agreed, as my daughter learned when she and her husband toured the Champagne region of France, that sparkling wines go with everything. 

The snack menu has also changed.  I was glad to see they no longer offered the measly portion of marcona almonds for $2.  The group, wanting to try local products, ordered the North Fork Cheese Plate, which, for $32, included a good-sized scoop of Goodale Farms herb chevre and a small slab of goat gouda, plus crackers, honey, and candied orange rind (all out of apricots).  They also got artichoke and lemon spread, a small container whose label we read to be sure it was okay for the lactose intolerant in the group, which came with (at least a dollar’s worth of) marcona almonds and crackers.  Plus two bags of North Fork potato chips.  It was plenty.

  •  NV Brut               $29

According to the tasting notes, this has won a number of medals, and I can see why.  It has a lovely bready aroma and tastes of ripe apple and minerals. Lots of tiny bubbles.  Everyone likes it.

  • 2020 Sauvignon Blanc                   $21

“Grassy,” says my daughter as she sniffs and sips this one, and I agree.  It reminds me of the smell of fresh-cut grass.  I also taste green apple and some minerality, and smell thyme honey.  Very nice.

  • 2021 Riesling                     $19

Our server explains that Suhru is a winery without a vineyard, and they buy all their grapes from various North Fork vineyards—except the riesling, which they buy from the Finger Lakes, a region famous for its rieslings.  I was glad this was a dry riesling, since I often find sweet rieslings undrinkable (except for dessert, or with very spicy food).  I explain the aroma, which some describe as “cat pee,” but for me reminds me of the smell of water that has had flowers in it for a bit too long.  Fortunately, it tastes better than it smells, with some stone fruit and flower notes.

  • 2021 Teroldego                $30

This and the sauvignon blanc are both new releases.  (The emphasis, by the way, is on the second syllable.)  This is an easy-to-drink red, and could go with turkey (as could all of the wines we tasted!).  It has notes of cherry and tobacco (from aging in oak), and is dry, with a touch of tannins. 

You can see how distracted I was by the lively conversation–I forgot to take a photo of the tasting until it was gone!

Reasons to Visit:  cozy, intimate tasting room with a beachy vibe; all the wines, including one I did not taste but others in the group tried, Ember; nice menu of snacks.

Kontokosta Winery: Absorbing the Crowds May 28, 2017



The grey skies meant many people opted for wineries rather than beaches.

We should have known better than to try to go to a winery on a non-beach Sunday over Memorial Day weekend.  But we had friends visiting, and we wanted to take them to Croteaux for a tasting.  As we headed east, we passed winery after winery where the parked cars had spilled over onto lawns and roadsides.  Uh oh.  And indeed, Croteaux was filled, with Michael Croteau outside, waving off cars trying to cram into his small lot.  Where to go?  Our friends hadn’t been to Kontokosta since shortly after it opened, and we figured that as far east as it is, and as big as the tasting room is, we would be able to get in there.


There was plenty of room when we arrived, but by the time we left all the seats were filled.

We were right, and even though parking there had also extended to a grassy area, there was room at one of the long tables in the tasting room for us to sit and enjoy our tasting.  However, by the time we left, it was SRO!  We also observed many people who had chosen to take a glass of wine out onto the expansive lawn and wander down to the Long Island Sound, visible in the distance.


You can see the Long Island Sound in the distance.

A tasting consists of any three wines from the menu for $12, so we decided to get three whites and three reds, not tasting the rosé or a few of the others, while our friends opted to share a tasting.  Maybe next time we’ll check out the others.  We also got a couple of bags of my favorite chips—North Fork Potato Chips.  If you haven’t tried them, do.  They are crispy kettle-fried chips, and totally addictive.  Kontokosta also has a menu of cheeses and charcuterie, plus non-alcoholic drinks.  The server poured out our nine tastes, explaining each one, and we took our glasses to a table.

  1. 2015 Sauvignon Blanc   $25

We were talking about getting some oysters later, so we decided to start with what is often a perfect oyster wine.  This wine smelled great—like mango and flowers—and tasted pretty good, too.  We found it tart, with some nice kiwi and vegetable tastes, with a pleasant finish.  One nice detail—it was not served too cold!

  1. 2015 Viognier    $25

Sometimes I think I like to order this wine because the name is fun to say.  In any event, I don’t think I would choose this particular viognier.  My husband’s first judgement was “restrained flavors,” to which I added “undistinguished.”  It has a bit of a wet basement smell, though also some minerality.  The taste is very light and uncomplicated.


The server lining up our tastes of the whites.

  1. 2015 Field Blend             $22

Our friend also ordered this one, and she immediately categorized it as a “dessert wine.”  It is on the sweet side, though not cloyingly so.  A blend of 47% riesling, 41% viognier, and 12% sauvignon blanc, it has a candy and honeysuckle aroma and tastes like peaches.  We decided it could go with spicy Thai food, where the fruit of the wine would match well with the coconut and peppers of Thai, but not so well with Indian dishes.  You could also have it with charcuterie.

  1. 2014 Merlot      $34

The server tipped the end of the bottle into our glass, which meant we ended up with a fair amount of sediment.  Oh well.  This is a pretty typical North Fork merlot, with lots of cherry tastes, pleasantly dry, with some tastes of tobacco and chocolate.  Nice.


The reds (of course).

  1. 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon           $29

We liked this one better, with lots of dark fruit tastes like purple plums and berries, plus some tannins.  It is more complex than the merlot, though the finish is quite short.  Dry.

  1. 2014 Cabernet Franc Reserve     $40

Though, as is often the case with Long Island reds, we felt it was not worth the price—and our friends, who also tried this, agreed—it is very nice indeed, with fruity aromas and soft tannins.  We tasted raspberries and a touch of spice, like pepper.  If I were to get a glass with which to wander down to the water, I would choose this.

  1. 2013 Anemometer Red                $50

Our friends also tried this one, and said it was very good.  A Bordeaux-style blend of cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon, syrah, and merlot, it has lots of oak and cherry tastes.


Snack menu. I highly recommend the North Fork Potato Chips!


Reasons to visit:  a pretty location next to Long Island Sound, walking distance from Greenport; the sauvignon blanc and the cabernet sauvignon; an attractive modern tasting room with a soaring ceiling and long tables; usually not too crowded, even on busy days—except not this past weekend!



In the background you can see their wind turbine, an increasingly frequent sight on the North Fork.