Roanoke Vineyards is dedicated to making exquisitely crafted, quality wines. Their production is extremely limited, and since Roanoke wines are only available at their tasting room or on their website, they have no imposed production quotas and no obligations to distributors, restaurants or retailers. This allows the winemakers at Roanoke to do their work in the vineyard and the cellar with no limits on their creativity. They believe there should be limitations when it comes to making the best wines for their customers.
Roanoke Vineyards is also a leader in wine-focused programming. Unlike some North Fork wineries, you won’t find a seventies revival band in the Roanoke tasting room, but you will find exciting events like the Winemakers Smackdowns, The Judgment of Riverhead, and the Winemakers Roundtable, where you can meet great winemakers from around the country and get a chance to taste their 90-point plus wines.
The New York Times declared “Roanoke has mastered Cabernet Franc,” and their Gabby’s Cab Franc is the highest Parker-rated Cabernet Franc on the Atlantic Seaboard. Their western location puts them out of the fog zone, yet fully exposed to the southwesterly sea breezes, allowing them to fully ripen Cabernet Sauvignon without the pressure of disease. Chardonnay wines that were planted in 1983 repeatedly deliver extremely concentrated fruit that Roanoke uses for its highly regarded “The Wild” ferment Chardonnay. Roanoke’s exciting red blends serve as the creative platform for head winemaker Roman Roth, and these high-scoring wines have proven themselves in head-to-head tastings with great wines from California and Bordeaux.
Roanoke proudly says “we can’t offer you a pony ride, but Roanoke will show you some of the best wine you’ve ever had.” Those wines include Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Rose, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and a selection of both red and white blends.
If you want to visit Roanoke Vineyards, it’s a good idea to do it soon – as of December 31st, 2015, Roanoke will be completely closing to the general public. The winery and tasting rooms will only be available to the winery’s 1000+ members. It will be the first producer on Long Island to go private.
“With a tsunami in tourism on Long Island’s North Fork, largely focused on the region’s wine industry, it’s not unreasonable to expect all of the tasting rooms to be packed in the coming years” according to Roanoke’s owner, Richard Pisacano. “This move ensures Roanoke’s energies will remain focused on the wines, and our wine club.”