finger lakes wineries [Moved from Wine board]
- cookie monster Aug 28, 2006 07:05 PM
so i'm headed to keuka lake with a group of friends for labor day weekend. we've been there several times before and selected wineries to visit pretty much at random, which resulted in tasting some excellent wines (mostly reislings and such, which i realize the region is know for), and some not so good ones (i now know that i'm definitely not a fan of honey mead. but one must try new things.). any recommendations of particular wineries to visit, and wines to look for there, especially in a relatively reasonable price range? in addition to the obvious goal of seeking out good wines, we're also happy to go to really pretty or unique properties, even if the wine itself is mediocre. thanks.
Dr Konstantin Frank is probably the best on Keuka Lake. Standouts are the brut champagne, reisling, gewurztraminer, and rkatseteli, a really aromatic white variety from eastern europe that I think you can only get at the winery now since it's so popular. Nice tasting area. Price-wise, they are fairly high...discounts for caseloads. The Dry Reisling on the website is $18.99 but I got it at PJ Wines in Manhattan for $12.
McGregor on the other side of the lake also makes some rkatseteli and another Russian variety, sereksiya. They also have red blend I think called Russian Red which is pretty good. Also a nice tasting room.
I've always liked the wines from Fox Run, but have never actually been there (hubby goes) so can't report on the winery itself.
I like the wineries around Seneca Lake. Try the website: http://www.senecalakewine.com. The events are fun to catch, and many have food pairings (which is a bonus for a foodie like me).
Glenora is at the southern part of the west side of the lake, very picturesque, decent prices. Hazlitt and Wagners are my favorites around the east side of the lake. Wagner is reasonable, and has a lot of variety and a brewery. Hazlitt is a lot of fun, I always have a great time there, they also have some new ports and sherries that are quite good (but pricey). Castel Grisch is a good one, I have heard good things about their food, very pretty also. FYI- the Belhurst Winery/Castle in Geneva is very pretty, but over priced and wine is so-so (IMO). Skip Anthony Road. Swedish Hill, Goose Watch and Penguin Bay are all the same owners, and you can normally buy all thier wines at any one of the wineries.
Bully Hill is fun if you are a 13 year old. Their wine is not good, and it's all a lot of hype. Lots of "souvenir" shopping if you like that sort of stuff.
Now, if you're going for the WINE:
I second Dr Konstantin Frank. By far the best wine in the whole Finger Lakes region.
Also I really like Hunt Country. Their Seyval Balnc is excellent. And, they have great dogs. :)
Lamoreaux Landing is my vote, I think not far from Dr. Frank. Their wines have gotten better and better over the past 13 years. In fact their Chardonnay just got a great rating from either Wine Spectator or Wine Enthusiast (I can't remember which.)
Knapp Vinyards, on the Western side of Cayuga Lake has a very pleasant restaurant. I am not a big fan of New York wines, but they do a champagne coctail with their various flavored armanacs (peach, strawberry, cherry) that is really tasty.
I visited several of the Cayuga Lake wineries last week, and the one that stood out, especially as I'm more partial to reds, was the Long Point Winery (one of the few on the east side of the lake). Head and shoulders above the rest:
Among the westside wineries, the Thirsty Owl had the best choices in my opinion.