Finger Lakes & Wines

travel makers wineThe Finger Lakes are located in Central New York and home to some of the tastiest wines in the state. Depending on what time of the year you visit, you can enjoy a full day or half-day tour of specific vineyards. For example, The Cayuga Wine Trail West Taste & Learn is a half-day fully guided and narrated wine tour that features three Cayuga Lake vineyards, including Cayuga Ridge Winery, where the owner, will take you on a private, behind-the-scenes tour of the wine-making process. At Hosmer Winery, you’ll taste two of the vintages of the same wine, side by side, as well as enjoy a chocolate pairing featuring locally-made chocolate paired with one of the Hosmer wines.  Finally, it’s to the Sheldrake Point Winery, where you’ll taste their Rieslings and Ice Wine.

The Finger Lakes also offers a by-request-only Murder Mystery Wine Night called “In the Distill of the Night” where you, as a detective, or a suspect, unravel a mystery while you taste wine and tour vineyards, including Frontenac Point

If you want to explore on your own and at your own pace, here are a few vineyards to get you started:

Standing Stone Vineyards: Founded in 1991, Standing Stone Vineyards makes approximately 8000 cases on their 41 acres of vineyards. The wines are made and sold in renovated barns. You can taste Chardonnays and Cabernets right out of the barrels.

Damiani Wine Cellars: Located on the shores of Seneca Lake, Damiani Wines highlights some of the region’s finest vinifera reds, including Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir and Bordeaux-inspired Meritage. One tour combines chocolates with the Damiani wines.

Fox Run Vineyards: The 55 acres produces a Riesling, Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc and Lemberger (Blaufrankish). The Vineyards also produce a Meritage blended from Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc plus a Blanc de Blancs sparkler made from estate Chardonnay. There are also several wood-aged fortified wines. There are a variety of activities, including tastings, 45-minute tours of the winery every hour, food and wine pairings, and an annual garlic festival.

Fulkerson Winery: This family owned farm was established in 1989 and produces over 25 varieties of wine that are bottled on site. In the fall, 30+ varieties of fresh grape juice are available for home winemaking. (For beer lovers, they also carry what you need for making your own beer too!)  They offer an annual winemaker’s dinner and, if you want to stay and explore the region, their traditional four-bedroom farmhouse is available as a rental.

Travel Makers MD