Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery was named by Wine & Spirits Magazine as one of the Top 100 Wineries of 2019. In the international field of 100 wineries, Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery joins such prestigious wineries as Champagne Krug, Domaine de Pégau, Joh. Jos. Prüm, Marchesi Antinori, Ridge Vineyards, and many others. Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery was the only winery named from the Finger Lakes region of New York. The winery previously was named Wine & Spirits Magazine Top 100 in 2016.
“We took a different approach to our tasting this year by focusing on specific regions and delving deeper into them,” said Joshua Greene, editor of Wine & Spirits Magazine. “Our concentrated tastings led to fiercer competition among the great wines of the world to earn a spot in our Top 100.”
“We are honored to be in the Top 100 wineries in the world for a second time in 2019,” exclaims third-generation owner and current President Fred Frank. “This is a true testament to our dedicated vineyard and winery team who are committed to the highest uncompromising quality of our fruit.”
Fourth-generation owner and current Vice President Meaghan Frank elaborates, “I like to think Konstantin would be proud to see how far we’ve come in the last 60 years. Our goal is to keep moving forward; that means embracing new technology and equipment, continuing to develop estate vineyards and investing in the people that make our winery so special.”
The success of the wines tasted by Wine & Spirits were a combination of many factors integrating together. “The 2016 and 2017 vintages were picture perfect for us,” said Mark Veraguth, Head Winemaker for over 30 years. “2016 brought bold flavors and beautiful ripe tannins in the reds while in 2017 we had clean, delightful aromas with perfect acidity levels from the moderate temperature weather.”
Dr. Konstantin Frank 2014 Brut, which received 92 points from Wine & Spirits, was the outcome of an ideally natural vintage. “Everything ripened evenly,” explains Sparkling Winemaker Eric Bauman. “The grapes were very clean with no rot. The technical analysis of the wine was perfectly in balance and needed no adjustment. The vintage gave us fruit with very bright acidity, full fruit concentration, and a rounder mouthfeel.” Bauman trained with J Vineyards and Piper Sonoma in California before joining Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery in 2005 where he trained with Barbara and Willy Frank.
“The biggest impact on the success of the wines is the overall health and condition of the fruit, especially in aromatic whites where it is hard to hide imperfections,” explains Assistant Vineyard Manager Brien Gardner. “We cannot take any shortcuts and we need to be in the vineyards every day taking care of the grapes.”
“In 2018 we spent a year going through old documents written by Dr. Konstantin and his first vineyard manager Walter Volz,” says Brand Manager Brandon Thomas. “One of the major influences to the success of our wines is our old vines. They are more adapted to our environment, and the roots dig much deeper into the soil to pull out more nutrients which in turn develops more complexity in the wines.” During the research it was confirmed the home vineyard on Keuka Lake has Pinot Noir and Riesling aged 61 years old, Chardonnay aged 57 years old, and Gewurztraminer aged 51 years old. Their Pinot Noir planted in 1958 represents the second oldest Pinot Noir vines in America.
2019 marks another exciting year for Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery. The winery continues to make advances in vineyard and winemaking equipment adding state-of-the-art technology to help the teams in their work. They have expanded upon the success of the 1962 Reserve Tasting Room by remodeling each tasting room and allowing each guest to choose wines to taste from the entire list including Reserve and Single Vineyard wines. The Terrace at 1886 allows guests to enjoy flights of wine paired with local cheeses on the new outside terrace overlooking the vineyards on Keuka Lake. On its fourth year, the 1886 Food and Wine Experience continues to evolve offering guests a thorough educational tour and tasting paired with creative small bites.Over the past 12 months, Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery was awarded as one of Wine & Spirits All-Stars of 2018, an international list of only 50 wineries and the only New York winery listed; Winery of the Year in 2018 by the New York Wine Classic; 10 Best Tasting Rooms in America by USA Today; and One of 11 Best Wineries in the United States by Men’s Journal.