Looking for fellow Long Island wine lovers, Lettie Teague decided to organize a Meetup—a real-life gathering for friends who meet online. Here, five excellent bottles she discovered in the process.

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5 Great Party Wines

Great Wines for Any Meetup:

2007 McCall Vineyards Merlot ($24)

Russell McCall has grown grapes for more than a decade, but this is the first Merlot under his own label. A big, broad-shouldered wine, it's made by Gilles Martin, a Frenchman who also produces a very nice Merlot for Sherwood House.

2007 Wölffer Estate Late Harvest Chardonnay ($37)

Although winemaker Roman Roth crashed the Meetup (he couldn't figure out how to RSVP online), his delicious dessert wine was a welcome addition.

2006 Bodegas El Nido Clio ($42)

A cultish Mourvèdre-Cabernet blend from Spain's Jumilla region, this is a voluptuous red with notes of spice and oak.

2007 Robert Foley Petite Sirah ($60)

2007 Jamesport Vineyards Petit Verdot ($100)

This inky North Fork red was the wine everyone at the Meetup was talking about: "Who knew Petit Verdot from Long Island could be this intense?" It will be available this spring.

More Wine Tips:

Making Real-Life Wine Friends Online
A Sparkling Wine and Cheese Tasting Party
Lamb Chops with Frizzled Herbs
Frying herbs like rosemary, parsley and sage for less than 45 seconds in a half inch of oil makes them ultracrispy; they are delicious with tender lamb chops.
| Credit: © Con Poulos