Miguel has his first glass of wine with his dad when he was 16. His father taught him that wine is food and to share it with family and friends and make every moment unique. Miguel went on to secure a degree as an Agricultural Engineer from Universidad Politecnica de Madrid as well as a Masters in Enology & Viticulture from UC Davis. He started making wine in 1989 in Spain. He’s also worked in California, Chile, Australia, Spain and New York. His first job in Long Island was at Le Reve winery (1989, now Duck Walk, Water Mill). Since 2006, he has been the Winemaker and General Manager at Palmer Vineyards.
What are the unique characteristics of your winemaking style?
It’s true that the wines are made in the vineyards. Yes, It’s true. I am very involved at the vineyards. I want to have the best possible grapes to make the most delicious wines to express the uniqueness of the Long Island terroir. My goal as a winemaker is to keep intact the aroma profile of our grapes and to make well balanced wines.
Describe the relationship between the Long Island wine community and the agriculture, aquaculture and overall East End culinary culture.
We are all a farm community. The wine industry in Long Island is responsible for more than 3000 acres of grapes. This has attracted an incredible number of talented chefs, and foodies from all over the world that using our local ingredients and their creativity are making the LI wine region a premier food a wine destination. This is just beautiful.
What foods are paired best with the wines of Long Island?
Very diverse from Oysters and scallops (Albarino, Sauvignon Blanc, Unoaked Chardonnay) to Duck (Cabernet Franc and Merlot).
What Long Island wine would you recommend to someone just discovering the region?
I love Chardonnay and this grape grows very well in Long Island. You have consistency year after year. I really like the wines from Roanoke Vineyards and the Sauvignon Blanc from Macari.
What are your passions outside of wine?
I love to take care of my vegetable garden during the summer. Most weekends you will find me pulling weeds and talking to my tomatoes. Also, I love to cook and my other passion it’s to travel with my family all over the world or just around the corner, to discover that special food and market and keep bringing good memories year after year.
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