L’uva Bella, Vineyards at Pine Lake Take Medals at Show

LOWELLVILLE, Ohio – L’uva Bella Winery’s Bourbon Barrel Aged Cabernet Sauvignon won best in show in the specialty wine category at the Ohio Wine Competition. Also winning medals was wine produced by the Vineyards at Pine Lakes in Columbiana.

The top prize, however, went to Gervasi Vineyard’s Sognata Vidal Blanc, which won the overall Overall Best of Show and Best of Ohio awards at the competition, which was held May 16-18 at the Lodge at Geneva-on-the-Lake.

The Best of Ohio designations are awarded to the Best of Show wines that are made from a minimum of 90% Ohio-grown American/Labrusca, Hybrid and Vinifera grape varieties, and have received the Ohio Quality Wine seal designation, according to the Ohio Department of Agriculture.

“Winning Best of Show was a great accomplishment for the team. Without the efforts of each individual, it would not have been possible,” L’uva Bella winemaker Garrett Lattanzio said. “We are excited to have that sort of recognition for our hard work and we will continue to produce top-quality wines with pride right here in the Youngstown area.”

There were 386 total entries this year with 322 receiving medals: 38 double gold, 42 gold, 148 silver and 94 bronze.

The Bourbon Barrel Cabernet Sauvignon, which received a double gold medal, was produced from California-sourced grapes that were aged in a mix of new and neutral oak wine barrels, Lattanzio said. A portion of the wine was then finished in ex-bourbon barrels sourced from Buffalo Trace Distillery.  

“The wine barrel aged and the bourbon barrel aged wines were then blended together with the goal of creating a wine that was still varietally expressive and not overwhelmed by the bourbon,” he said. The wine has great dark fruit character typical of a Cabernet Sauvignon, as well as hints of vanilla, brown sugar and spices from the bourbon barrels.

“Winning Best in Show, Specialty means a great deal to me. We are doing everything we can to put quality first at L’uva Bella,” Marisa Sergi, chief growth officer, said. The wine, which L’uva Bella has offered since November, is sold exclusively at L’uva Bella Bistro in Lowellville.

“We have recently invested in the best equipment we can get our hands on from France as well as a state-of-the-art wine analysis system,” Sergi continued. “We also have some of the best talent at the winery working together toward the same mission, produce and share the best wines, possible,” she continued. “This award shows that all our hard work is paying off and shows that we are at the top of our craft when producing our new vintages.”

A total of nine L’uva Bella wines took home medals from the competition.

Reserve Collection Zinfandel and Purple Rain Tri-Blend took silver medals, and Signature Grenache Syrah Mourverde, Red’s Sweet Rose, Purple Rain concord, Purple Rain sangria, Passion Blackberry and Passion Peach won bronze.

The Vineyards at Pine Lake in Columbiana took home 20 medals for its wines, including double gold for its Gewurztraminer and Syrah wines, and gold for its Winemaker’s Signature Series: Gewurztraminer and Vineyards White.

Its Winemaker’s Signature Series: Muscat Canelli, Winemaker’s Signature Series: Cabernet Sauvignon, Pine Lake Red, Dual Staved, Lindale, Blue Orchard and Bubbly Lindale all won silver medals. Bronze winners for the winery were its Winemaker’s Signature Series: Riesling, Cabernet Sauvignon, Winemaker’s Signature Series: Frontenac, Hidden Cherries, Bubbly Hidden Cherries, Bubbly St. Croix, Bubbly Avily, and bubbly Blue Orchard. 

Copyright 2022 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.