Damiani Wine Cellars '07 Meritage and later picked that wine in a poll to win top honors at the New York Wine and Food Classics's annual competition. The Governors Cup was won by an outstanding Riesling, but the Damiani Meritage won double gold medals for the best vinifera red blend. So, when I found the 2008 Meritage at the recent Finger Lakes Riesling Festival I couldn't wait to get a bottle home and at least compare against my notes from last year. What I found was somewhat nicer, at little more fruit, but not much difference. Aromas were still black cherry, some tobacco with some added dark plum and hints of new leather. In the mouth were lots of cherry and plum with a spicy and peppery feel on the sides. The finish was very long, dry, with some pepper and anise.
This wine went very well with grilled turkey burgers covered with salsa and a tomato, cucumber and mozzarella salad with oil and vinegar. Although I enjoyed a glass after dinner, I believe the wine is meant to be enjoyed more with food. Tonight with some left over BBQ chicken the wine was delightful. I did save 1/2 glass for a night cap though.
If you order from the winery, their website is still showing the 2007, so you may want to call your order in at 607-546-5557. The price should be the same at $20. Ask for Amy and tell her Why Wine Blog sent you.