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Name that grape

Grapevines hang with ripening grapes at Bedell Cellars,

Grapevines hang with ripening grapes at Bedell Cellars, a winery in Cutchogue on the North Fork. (Aug. 3, 2010) Credit: Randee Daddona, 2010

Attention, grape nuts.

Two new grapes will be released from Cornell University's breeding program and scientists want your help naming them.

One is a hearty white; the other, an organic red.  Both could be grown on Long Island.

The dark red is especially disease resistant and suggests blueberry; the white, aromatic, floral and citrusy, said grape breeder Bruce Reisch.

Currently, they're known as NY76.0844.24 and NY95.0301.01, which don't exactly have the musical lilt of chardonnay and cabernet. NY95.0301.01 has been studied at the Cornell Cooperative Extension in Riverhead.

Reisch said the red could yield a wine similar to a Beaujolais; the white, one with the characteristics of a muscatel. Reisch said they're both suited for cooler climates and could grow in north-central states such as Ohio and Indiana, as well as upstate.

"They definitely could grow on Long Island," Reisch said. The region, however, is planted with popular grape varieties and it would be difficult for a new one to supersede any of them. Chardonnay is the most widely planted white. Popular reds include merlot, cabernet sauvignon and cabernet franc.

Reisch is accepting submissions by email: bruce.reisch@cornell.edu until Aug. 6. The winning names will be announced at the Viticulture 2013 conference, to be held in Rochester from Feb. 6 to Feb. 8. There already are more than 100 entries.

At Bedell Cellars in Cutchogue.

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