Newsman Dan Abrams at his Ev&Em Vineyards in Laurel. May...

Newsman Dan Abrams at his Ev&Em Vineyards in Laurel. May 28. Credit: Newsday/Mark Harrington

After a yearlong face-lift and expansion, the former Laurel Lake Vineyards has officially opened with newsman Dan Abrams’ stamp as Ev&Em Vineyards.

Abrams at a grand-opening event  on Saturday said his plan is to operate the establishment as a luxury winery, with crafted wines in its Reserve collection that may top $125 a bottle. Offerings on the current list of nine wines sell for between $32 and $40 a bottle.

“We’ve created a luxury Long Island wine that can compete with the finest wines from Napa Valley and the world,” Abrams said. “I’m going to put my heart and soul into this.”

And money. The multimillion-dollar overhaul brought new indoor and outdoor tasting areas and a cellar dining area for private events that features a long, wood table surrounded by racks of wine barrels. There’s an upper deck tasting area that overlooks the Laurel vineyard, new winemaking facilities and a food truck. The name Ev&Em is derived from Abrams' children's names, Everett and Emilia.

The new outdoor tasting area at Ev&Em Vineyards.

The new outdoor tasting area at Ev&Em Vineyards. Credit: Newsday/Mark Harrington

New to the wine list are Classic Estate 2021 wines including a Sauvignon Blanc, a Pinot Gris, a Stainless Steel Chardonnay and a Rose. Entry-level wines under the E2 line include a 2019 merlot, a 2019 Cabernet Franc, a 2019 Gewurztraminer and a 2020 Stainless Steel Chardonnay. The winery is also selling out the remainder of Laurel Lake-branded wines.

The plan is to increase the current output of about 4,000 cases per year to more than 8,000, Abrams said. The company has already planted thousands of new vines on the 44-acre property, but is also taking advantage of vines that have been in the ground for up to 40 years. New to the vineyard are Malbec grapes, said winemaker Juan Sepulveda, who had been the longtime winemaker for Laurel Lake.

Vanessa Price, a sommelier and former wine columnist at New York Magazine, will oversee day-to-day operations of the winery.

Abrams, a wine collector and aficionado who has a nearby home on the Peconic Bay, has been a longtime fan of Long Island wines. He named nearby Paumanok Vineyards as one of his favorites and an inspiration.

Abrams, founder of Abrams Media, is a longtime chief legal correspondent for ABC News, host of Dan Abrams Live on NewsNation and a bestselling author.

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