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North Fork Wine Wins WSJwine's "Annual Dozen" Tasting

Nicole Barylski

Lieb's Pinot Blanc is the first dry wine from Long Island to be awarded at the event. (Photo: www.facebook.com)

Lieb Cellars' 2013 Reserve Pinot Blanc has been awarded top honors at WSJwine's prestigious "Annual Dozen" Tasting. The annual invite-only blind tasting is held to find some of the finest wines in America. Lieb's Pinot Blanc is the first dry wine from Long Island to be awarded at the event.

"We were excited when invited to enter but figured it'd be an extreme long shot upon hearing that the judges would be tasting over 400 wines this year," shared Lieb Cellar's general manager and certified sommelier Ami Opisso. "When we received the note saying that our Pinot Blanc had won, we were literally jumping and screaming."

This was the 6th anniversary of the "Annual Dozen," which is widely considered to be one of the definitive tastings of American wines. Over 400 wines were rigorously blind tasted and judged by a panel of experts including world-renowned wine writer and critic Hugh Johnson. Only 12 were named the best. "We've known for years that we have something truly special with our Pinot Blanc," Opisso added. "It's incredible validation to know that these judges agree and a testament to the overall quality of Long Island wines."

Lieb Cellars has been making Pinot Blancs, its signature wine, since 1999. Winemaker Russell Hearn explained the wine's style as "clean, bright and mineral-driven with subtle citrus fruit notes." The wine's fresh taste pairs well with the local East End shellfish cuisine.

"We're no longer 'up and coming.'" noted Opisso. "Our wines have arrived. They're some of the best in the country."

On Friday, October 23rd, Lieb will host a reception to celebrate the winning wine from 6 to 9 p.m. at their Cutchogue tasting room.

Lieb's Cutchogue tasting room is located at 13050 Oregon Road in Cutchogue. For more information, call 631-734-1100 or visit liebcellars.com.

Nicole is the Editor-in-Chief of Hamptons.com where she focuses on lifestyle, nightlife, and mixology. She grew up in the Hamptons and currently resides in Water Mill. www.hamptons.com NicoleBarylski NicoleBarylski

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