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The Winery at St. George is located at 1715 East Main Street on Route 6 in Mohegan Lake, NY 10547. St. George is a New York State winery nestled in the scenic Hudson Valley wine region. Our wine making operation, visitor’s center, and tasting room are housed in the historic Old St. George’s Church in beautiful Mohegan Lake. The winery will produce limited edition, high quality wines from grapes grown at Hilltop Hanover Farm in Yorktown Heights. Our mission, our passion, is to advance environmentally sound organic agriculture while sustaining open land initiatives.
Planted on May 9th, 2007, the vineyard will be an integral part of Westchester County’s Conservation and Natural Resource Center. It boasts three grape varietals: Cabernet Franc, Seyval Blanc and Noiret (a Pinot Noir hybrid). We, the winemakers, look forward to years of abundant harvests and converting these fruits of labor into spectacular wines for all to enjoy. Press blue button for The Winery at St. George website.
Prospero Winery is located at 134 Marble Avenue, Pleasantville, NY 10570 in Westchester County. Over thirty years ago, a young man left his home in the Abruzzi Region of central Italy. Tony Prospero arrived in New York with a dream of starting a successful family business with his father, Guido, and brother, Pasquale.
History of the Winery "Just as those of a grapevine that run deep and true, so does the history behind Prospero Winery. Generations of Prospero’s were born and raised in L’Aquila, a charming city set within the Abruzzi region of central Italy. In the rich soils of this rustic and plentiful land, the Prospero’s planted a small vineyard to enjoy with their family and friends as a hobby. Tony, the youngest of three, kept their traditions close to his heart after making the long journey from Italy to New York.
Tony and his wife, Silvana, opened a fruit stand in 1973 in the town of Pleasantville, NY. They began selling fruits, vegetables and California wine grapes. The grapes received enormous attention and were a big hit for Westchester County’s growing population of home winemakers. Ever the visionary, Tony decided to expand his line of products to meet the manufacturing demands of these self vintners. In the years to come, what was once a small fruit stand expanded by supplying home and commercial wine making equipment both here in the U.S. and abroad.
After more than 30 years of harvesting California wine grapes in Pleasantville, Tony and Silvana wanted to share their love of wine with everyone. In December of 1999, a winery and tasting room was opened on the original site of Prospero’s fruit and vegetable stand. Today, Prospero Winery welcomes visitors daily to come in and experience the presence of fine Italian tradition surrounding them. Every variety tastes of the passion that went into its making, and each has roots hinting to the cultural lineage leading back to the original small vineyard that was planted to share with family and friends in their small town of L’Aquila."
Altamont Vineyard & Winery is located at 3001 Furbeck Road, Altamont NY 12009, Albany in the Hudson River Valley. We offer free tastings Friday, Saturday, and Sunday noon to 5:00 pm or by appointment. Vineyard tours start in May and winery tours are available by appointment. The store is open Friday through Sunday noon to 5:00 pm.
"We produce and bottle wines made from hybrid grapes grown on the premises. The grapes planted have been developed to sustain the cold-harsh winters and wet-humid summers. Vines were planted starting in 1981 to 1996 as experiments by Larry Grossi, who opened Larry’s Vineyard and Farm Winery in 1988.
"We have 23 different grape varieties in our vineyard, and all require a different kind of care. We’re a small operation with a limited budget. There are only three of us, so we all work long hours and depend on our friends and family, especially during harvest season." Call Altamont for more information.
Elk Hill Winery is located at 225 Prim Lane, Berne NY 12023, Albany in the historic Hudson River Region of New York. "Elk Hill is a no nonsense winery, lovingly and painstakingly built by the Primiano Family. Our winery is nestled in the Heldeberg Mountains, within twenty minutes driving time from Albany.
"As well as visiting us during our normal hours of operation, we invite you to come enjoy our annual wine festivals. During each festival, tours of the winery are available. Wine tasting is encouraged . . . Check out the live entertainment." Press blue button for more about Elk Hill Winery, winery tours, wine tasting, and the wine festivals.
Chatham Brewing is located at 30 Main Street, Suite 2, Chatham NY 12037, Columbia County in the Hudson Valley. From the owners: Chatham Brewing is the brainchild of two beer lovers, Jake and Tom. We were tired of the generic taste of mass-market beers. So we decided to brew our own. At least once a week. Every week. Except when we're on a fishing trip. Our beers are all natural. We never use additives or fillers. Just hops, barley, malt, yeast and that magic elixir called Chatham water. And while we aren't the green police, we do believe in recycling. Which is why we sell our beer in reusable growlers and kegs. . . . So watch out St. Louis and Milwaukee. There's a new brewing capital of the world. It's a town named Chatham. Summer Growler Hours Saturdays, 11am - 5pm
Tousey Winery is located at 1774 Route 9, Clermont (aka Germantown) NY 12526, southern Columbia County, bordering Dutchess County, in the Hudson Valley. Tousey Winery is part of a family farm renowned for honey bees, honey, candle wax, and fine local wines.
Ray Tousey is a farmer and a beekeeper. Ray has more than 250 hives. He is well known in those parts. He is a ubiquitous presence at farm markets in Columbia and Dutchess counties.
From honey to candles, and bulk beeswax for soap and candle crafters, Ray Tousey and his bees add their unique products to the markets. Kids love to check out Ray’s live bee display and vintage truck. Ray also features a variety of small fruits: currants, gooseberries, raspberries, and heirloom tomatoes. Ray brings hand-made fruit juices, preserves, and his own unique brand of cassis sweetened with honey, not sugar.
All the bee products and the wines can be found at the Rhinebeck Farmer’s Market and the Kingston Farmer’s Market, as well as at their new tasting room that will open this spring.
The Hudson-Chatham Winery is located at 1900 State Route 66, Ghent, New York, 12075. This exciting new winery, which specializes in small hand-made batches of wine, is dedicated to the richness of the Hudson River Valley, particularly its wine, agriculture, literature, art, history, and many other attractions that make it a rich and special region. The Hudson-Chatham Winery, located between the historic towns of Hudson and Chatham, is the first winery in Columbia County.
As well as creating fine artisanal wines, the DeVito family (including two dogs), and many valued friends, have worked hard restoring the winery’s grounds and its prestigious circa 1780 farmhouse. The winery features hand-crafted wines, cheeses and desserts, and includes vineyard tours and a gazebo with scenic views. Press blue button for more about Hudson-Chatham Winery in Columbia County.
Harvest Spirits at Golden Harvest Farms is located at 3074 US Route 9, Valatie NY 12184, Columbia County in the Hudson Valley. Harvest Spirits is the home of Core Vodka, the Hudson Valley's most popular distilled spirit made from 100% Hudson Valley apples. Located at Golden Harvest Farms, stop by and taste baked goods and cider, as well as fresh fruits and vegetables.
Tours & Tastings The distillery is open to the public for tours, tastings and sales every weekend or by appointment. Look for the large, yellow distillery sign. During business hours, you'll see a black "Distillery Open" road sign as you approach our farm. Tours and tastings are complimentary to those of legal drinking age."
Distilling 101, Learning How It's Made "We try to schedule our distilling on the weekends, so our customers can see how we make Core Vodka. In addition to learning how we make our award-winning vodka, we enjoy answering any questions we can about distilled spirits. A tour does not need to be scheduled in advance. Simply stop in during business hours."
Press blue button for more about Harvest Spirits at Golden Harvest Farms.
Cascade Mountain Winery & Restaurant is located at 835 Cascade Mountain Road, Amenia NY 12501 in the Hudson Valley. Cascade Mountain was founded in the spring of 1972 by the Wetmore family who pioneered the production of premium table wines on the eastern side of the Hudson River. Bill, along with his wife Margaret and their three children Charles, Michael and Joan, planted the vineyard in 1972, built the winery in 1977, and opened the restaurant in 1985.
Today, Cascade Mountain is a thriving business which features a full line of award-winning table wines and a restaurant. Customers come from all over the world to enjoy a few pleasant hours on top of the Berkshire foothills accompanied by good food and wine. Press blue button for more information about Cascade Mountain Winery & Restaurant.
Clinton Vineyards is located at 450 Schultzville Road, Clinton Corners NY 12514 in Dutchess County. Clinton Vineyards and Winery, located in the Hudson Valley is the premium producer of Seyval Blanc, white table wine, champagnes and dessert wines from grapes grown on the estate.
Imagine yourself walking among orderly, luxuriant rows of trellised vines laden with grapes with a backdrop of beautiful rolling hills. Then stop in a charming tasting room to sample premium white wines, méthode champenoise sparkling wines and luscious dessert wines, with sexy names like Romance, Embrace, and Desire. Meet the proprietor and winemaker and taste delicious food made from the bounty of local farms. These pleasures await you at Clinton Vineyards in Dutchess County in the Hudson Valley. You'll feel welcome in this setting, one of the most beautiful in Dutchess County complete with historic barns, a pond, lovely gardens and exquisite landscape.
Close to New York City, Albany and Danbury, Clinton Vineyards is open for tours and tastings. Press blue button for more about Clinton Vineyards' wines and winery.
Follow our Dutchess Wine Trail past the Vineyards, orchards and farms that provide the bounty of this beautiful valley. Along the way, you will sample wines that have gained international recognition while you tour the wine cellars and chat with the owners and winemakers. The Dutchess Wine Trail takes you to Alison Wines & Vineyards, Clinton Vineyards and Millbrook Vineyards, all within a half hour of each other. Complete list and descriptions of wineries.
En route, you'll pass by thoroughbred horse farms, dairies, orchards, woodlands, lakes and trout streams that will transport you to an earlier, simpler time. In addition, there are the Gardens of Wethersfield and Innisfree, as well as the fabled mansions of the Hudson River. Enjoy the many fine restaurants, country inns, bed & breakfasts and antique shops along the Dutchess Wine Trail.
At the wineries, you will be sampling a medley of European wine varieties vinified as sparkling wines, dry to semi-dry table wines and late harvest dessert wines that have won their share of Gold Medals in both National and International Competitions as well as the praise of wine critics across the country. Visit our wineries and sample our wines, each a taste of seasons past: The snows of winter, April showers, summer sunshine and crisp fall nights. It's all there in the bottle, waiting for you. Press blue button for more about The Dutchess Wine Trail.
Millbrook Vineyards & Winery is located at 26 Wing Road, Millbrook NY 12545, Dutchess County in the Hudson Valley. Millbrook Vineyards & Winery was the first vineyard in the Hudson River Region of New York dedicated exclusively to the production of vinifera grapes. Millbrook Vineyards & Winery’s 30-acres of vines include plantings of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, and an Italian varietal called Tocai Friulano. Dyson began planting vines at the Millbrook site in 1983. The southwest facing slopes and the gravelly soil proved excellent for viticulture.
Millbrook Winery officially opened for tours and tastings in 1988, and today produces 8,000 - 10,000 cases of wine a year, specializing in Chardonnay, Tocai Friulano, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc. The winery has earned recognition for these wines in such prestigious publications as The Wine Spectator, The New York Times, The New York Daily News, Hudson Valley Magazine, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Encyclopedia of Wine, and Bon Appetit.
Essential to the Millbrook Wine Experience is an informative and enriching tour of the Winery, which will leave you with an insider's view of the entire winemaking process, from careful tending of the vineyards to our Winemaker's art of vinification. Tours are complimentary and conducted every day. Millbrook Vineyards & Winery is open year-round, seven days a week with the exception of some holidays. Press blue button for more about Millbrook Vineyards & Winery.
The word is Called "the Hudson Valley's flagship winery" by The New York Times and "a great place to visit" by The Wall Street Journal.
Oak Summit Vineyard is located at 372 Oak Summit Road, Millbrook, NY 12545 in the Hudson Valley. We make the greatest Pinot Noir in the true Burgundian manner. Great wine can only be made from great grapes. Therefore we grow only healthy, luscious grapes without any herbicides. Thereafter we vinify only clean, pure Pinot Noir without any additives.
Our 6-acres of vines are planted in Dutchess Cardigan, a somewhat gravelly loam of great depth. The natural pH is 6.3, and the soil is rich in nutrients and well balanced in minerals, without the need for artificial amendments. Our Pinot Noir vines are all traditional Dijon clones grafted on American rootstock. They are hand planted and hand trained onto a VSP trellis system.
Oak Summit's PINOT NOIR has received an amazing array of awards including 3 Gold Medals, a Silver and a Bronze from the Hudson Valley Wine & Grape Association's 2005 Grand Competition at the Culinary Institute of America. And also, the prestigious CORNELL CUP for the best wine in the Hudson Valley AVA. And, among others, the DCEDC Agriculture Awards for 2005 and the Silver Medal from The American Wine Society's 21st Annual Competition. Press blue button to see photos of Vineyards, Tasting Room, Sunset View over the lake, and more about Oak Summit Vineyard.
Alison Wines & Vineyards is located at 231 Pitcher Lane, Red Hook, NY 12571 in Dutchess County. Alison Wines & Vineyards began in 1999 because Winemaker Richard Lewit dreamed of combining his numerous, but seemingly disparate, interests and loves including: the outdoors; New York’s Hudson Valley; biology and chemistry; wine and food. A native of Westchester and a graduate of nearby Bard College with a chemistry degree, Richard was working in New York City as a newspaper reporter when he realized that winemaking in the Hudson Valley combined what he wanted.
A few years later, after apprenticing at nearby Millbrook Vineyards and also with Oregon's renowned Ponzi family, Richard was ready to start his own winery. With six vintages completed, an impressive number of medals, and another vintage ready for the bottle, that dream is a reality. Fully established with a reputation for high-quality, affordable wines that are delicious and food friendly, Alison Wines is expanding with popular strawberry and blueberry dessert-style fruit wines as well as great-tasting apple wines.
We are proud to be a New York State farm winery in our favorite place, the Hudson Valley. We take care that our wines reflect the special climate and growing conditions found in New York. Happily, this produces just the sort of wines that we love: complex enough to enjoy over and over, accessible enough to sip alone, and versatile enough to complement any meal. For us wine is about everyday enjoyment with food, with family, and with friends. We hope you find the same enjoyment with our wines that we do. Press blue button for more about Alison Wines & Vineyards.
Breezy Hill Orchard & Cider Mills is located at 828 Centre Road, Staatsburg, NY 12580. Press blue button to browse our recipe section, check out our photo gallery or take a tour of Breezy Hill Orchard & Cider Mills.
"The Hudson-Berkshire Beverage Trail is the premiere beverage trail in New York State and the Hudson Valley . . . Tucked in between the Hudson Valley and the Berkshire Mountains, the trail extends from Southeast of Albany down to Hudson, New York. You’ll find handcrafted and award-winning and celebrated wines, beers, and spirits. And you’ll also be able to experience farm fresh produce, artisanal cheeses, baked goods, 100% natural maple syrup, fresh apple ciders, and other gourmet, local food products."
Follow the Trail
Hudson-Chatham Winery 1900 Route 66 Ghent, NY 12075 Columbia County 518-392-WINE
Brookview Station Winery 1297 Brookview Station Road Castleton, NY 12033 Rensselaer County 518-732-7317
Harvest Spirits at Golden Harvest Farm 3074 US Route 9 Valatie, NY 12184 Columbia County
30 Main Street, Suite 2 Chatham, NY 12037 Columbia County 518-697-0202
Tousey Winery 1774 Route 9 Clermont, NY 12526 Columbia County 518-567 5462
Furnace Brook Winery At Hilltop Orchards Rt. 295 / 508 Canaan Road Richmond, MA 01254 413-698-3301
Les Trois Emme Winery 8 Knight Road New Marlborough, MA 01230 413- 528-1015
Press blue button for more about the Hudson Berkshire Experience.
A Wine Lover’s Event Resource How many times have you found yourself looking for a really cool local wine event, wine education class, boutique wine shop or friendly wine club in your area? Or searched for wine events in destinations you plan on traveling to? After spending needless time searching inefficiently, you find very little or, worse, nothing more fun than visiting the local grocery store’s wine department. Or you could type www.LocalWineEvents.com into your browser and find it all at your fingertips.
LocalWineEvents.com offers a user-friendly city search feature in the state or country of your choice, making it easy to find out what’s going on in your part of the world. Once you have selected the specific city, you simply choose those events of interest or select the subject pages such as “Wine & Food Educators,” “BYOB Restaurants” or “Food, Wine and Lodging” located at the top of the city webpage. LocalWineEvents.com users may also sign up to receive “The Juice” newsletter and e-mails about local wine events happening in their area. . . Tom DiNardo, Wine Adventure Magazine.
From Lake Erie to Long Island New York Wine Country spans the entire breadth of New York State. View "Uncork New York" and click on the many New York Wine Regions. View the list of wineries found in each wine region as well as have the opportunity to view a short video clip on the region, peruse a map locating the wineries and check out the calendar of events for this particular region. You’ll also learn about each region’s specialties and find some general statistics.
If there are one or more “Wine trails’’ active in the region, we have provided links to their sites as well. Wine trails are groups of wineries that are related geographically and work cooperatively to encourage visitors to learn about the fine products they are bringing to the market. Many of the wine trails have special event programs that feature wine and food pairing events throughout the year. These events are listed along with the winery-specific events in the Calendar of events for the individual regions.
Map Center To see a statewide map indicating the location of the various regions. You can easily identify how to move from one region to another if you have time for an extended visit. By then clicking on the specific region of interest, you will get a more detailed map.
Hudson River Valley Wine Region North of New York City, graced by the beauty and temperature-moderating effects of the majestic Hudson River, lies one of America's most historic wine regions. Even more important than the water's effect on the air, the steep palisades funnel maritime breezes through the region, which today hosts more than 20 wineries building on the tradition of the oldest vineyard and winery in America. A pioneering region for French-American grape varieties such as Seyval Blanc and Baco Noir, the Hudson River Region has also proved hospitable to the more delicate European grape varieties such as Chardonnay and Cabernet Franc.
Within the larger Hudson River Region, on the West side of the Hudson River enjoy the "Shawangunk Wine Trail," named after a nearby mountain range. On the East side of the Hudson River is the "Dutchess Wine Trail".
New York Wine & Culinary Center is located at 800 South Main Street, Canandaigua, New York 14424 in Ontario County. "The New York Wine & Culinary Center is designed to engage, excite and inspire the people of New York State and the world in a celebration of New York wine and food. The Center is an educational and experiential gateway to New York State's incredible wine, food and culinary industries."
. . . Canandaigua New York was chosen as the ideal location for the New York Wine & Culinary Center. A small city perched on the north shore of Canandaigua Lake, it is a major tourist destination during the summer months. Canandaigua is known for its historical architecture, bustling main street and proximity to many farms and wineries . . . Overlooking the City's picturesque pier, the new Center building is designed to be inviting and a stunning showcase for exhibitions, classes and eating and drinking experiences. Press blue button to visit the New York Wine & Culinary Center website.
Palaia Vineyards is located at 20 Sweet Clover Road, Highland Mills, NY 10930 in the beautiful Hudson Valley. Come and visit us and see whats new. We have Added a Deck to the Tasting Room. It's a great place to enjoy the view of the vineyard and the background of the Skunnemunk Ridge - and just relax. We invite you to come and visit while you explore and celebrate the history around us.
History Palaia Vineyards "Pa-Lie-Ahh" is named for our winemaker's grandfather, Angelo Palaia who emigrated here from Italy and passed his winemaking skills on to his son and grandson. We have taken the basics he gave us , and with modern winemaking techniques have been able to make some truly outstanding wines. Here at Sweet Clover Farm, we believe in celebrating and preserving the history of our family, country, town and homestead. We are proud to be the owners of a working farm that has been in the Hudson Valley for over 200 years. Once a dairy farm, it is now home to over 10-acres of vineyards with more planned for the future. The 200 year old bank barn had been restored over the last 3 years and is now a beautiful winery on the lower level, with storage and a tasting room above preserving the look and feel of the historical building. We invite you to come and visit. Press "Blue Button" for history, photos and more about Palaia Vineyards and be sure to visit our winery.
Silver Stream Winery is located at 11 Kennedy Lane, Monroe, NY 10950. The Hudson Valley is a viticultural paradox. It is at once an exciting new wine region and also the oldest commercial wine producing region in the country.
History There was a hill in Orange County New York. The hillside overlooked what used to be an old Indian road used before the Dutch got here and then later it became a Colonial road leading to the local iron works and forge. The road ran alongside a stream for most of its distance, the name of the stream was Trout Brook, but us kids, we used to just call it Silver Stream.
Today there are five varieties grown here at Silver Stream Winery: Cabenet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Traminette and an Alsatian variety known by the tongue-twisting name of Gewurtztraminer. We are producing about estate grown wines and other New York State varietals. We also make a vinegar that will knock you socks off and then hang 'em up on the bedpost. Press blue button to explore the exciting wines that are available here in the Hudson Valley of New York and at Silver Stream Winery.
Pazdar Winery is located in Scotchtown, NY 10941. We started the Pazdar Winery in 1995 to produce Innovative Unique Boutique and Hand Crafted Premium Wines with Attitude. The first wines were released June 1996. To ensure quality, the wines are hand-crafted using the finest grapes, fresh pressed fruit juice, and finest winemaking techniques from Europe and the United States. They are carefully aged. It is only when they have reached the desired flavor, that they are bottled and sold.
At this time we choose not to have a tasting room. Instead we enjoy going into various communities and getting to know our customers on personal basis. On weekends during the spring, summer, and fall months, one of us is usually at a farm market or a local liquor store where the wines can be tasted and bought. If you would like a listing of where we will be, please e-mail us and we will add you to our mailing list. Press blue button for Pazdar Winery.
Applewood Winery is located at 82 Four Corners Road, Warwick NY 10990 in Orange County. Enjoy wine tasting at a real farm winery in New York's Hudson Valley. Discover New York wines at Applewood Winery. Our wines are made from our own vineyards, orchards and from across the state. We make Chardonnay's, Cabernet Franc, barrel fermented reds, in addition to that we have delicious fruit wines including Hard Apple Cider. Every wine is produced in a "limited edition" with almost every bottle spoken for as soon as its made. So you'll only find our wine at the tasting room and here in our online store.
Enjoy music every weekend in August. Music starts at 2:00 and ends at 5:00. The Cafe will be open serving fruit & cheese platters and sandwiches. Press blue button for more about Applewood Winery.
The Demarest Hill Winery and Distillery is located at 81 Pine Island Turnpike, Warwick, New York 10990 in the Hudson River Valley. As a young man, Francesco tended the family vineyards in Molise, Italy, learning the intricate skill of wine making from his father. He toiled long and hard in these humble surroundings, and he set out to build his dream. . . Francesco finally settled in America. Here he used his hard-earned money to purchase a large tract of land in Warwick, New York, where his vision began to take shape.
Francesco carefully selected and assembled the equipment that would allow him to demonstrate his wine making expertise. At first he only made a few barrels of wine, but as the years went by, his production began to increase. He continued to perfect his winery's quality, and in 1994, the first varietal, as well as blended wines were created: Chardonnay, Zinfandel, and Chenin Blanc.
Francesco has expanded his vineyard on a sun-drenched hillside, due to the ever-increasing demand for Demarest Hill wines. When asked why he makes wine, Francesco responds: "It's the people. When they take a sip of my wine and smile, that's my reward." Press blue button for more about The Demarest Hill Winery and Distillery.
Warwick Valley Winery is located at 114 Little York Road, Warwick NY 10990, Orange County in the foothills of the Hudson Valley. Situated between Mt. Eve and Mt. Adam, our tasting room provides the ideal setting for tasting wine, listening to music, and enjoying food. We invite you to come to the tasting room and celebrate Wine and Music and Food. Our wines and ciders are also available for purchase throughout New York and New Jersey.
Warwick Valley Winery & Distillery is open all year round. We sponsor a music series, "Uncorked and Unplugged n the Orchard" featuring live music every weekend - rain or shine. Our bakery is open every weekend year round. We offer fresh breads, pastries and specialty items, all prepared by our Culinary Institute of America trained chefs.
Pick-Your-Own apples and Pears Every autumn, our guests are invited to enjoy our orchards. Pear picking begins in August. Apples begin to ripen shortly thereafter in early September. With thirty varieties, we have an apple for every palate. Please, bring your family to meet our family and enjoy our farm, winery and orchards.
We sponsor a music series, "Uncorked and Unplugged in the orchard" featuring live music every weekend - rain or shine. Doc's Cider House is our new venue to enjoy music, wine and food throughout the year. Enjoy our Bakery where we offer fresh breads, pastries and specialty items, all prepared by our Culinary Institute of America trained chefs. Every autumn, our guests are invited to enjoy our lavish orchards and Pick-Your-Own apples and Pears. Pear picking begins in August. Warwick Valley Winery and Orchards' commitment to fine food and wine are why we are referred to as a "Bit of Tuscany in the Hudson Valley". Press blue button for more information about Warwick Valley Winery.
Brotherhood, America's Oldest Winery, is located at 100 Brotherhood Plaza Drive, Washingtonville, NY 10992 in the Hudson River Valley Region.
Winemaking is an ancient and honored art, and nowhere is this more evident than at Brotherhood, America's Oldest winery. The winery was established by a European emigre, John Jaques, who produced the first commercial vintage in 1839. Brotherhood has been in continuous operation since that time, making the winery the oldest in the United States. Brotherhood Winery is listed in the New York State Register of Historic Places and is listed as a National Historic Landmark.
The winery, nestled in the foothills of the Catskills, offers visitors the opportunity to "step back into history". Our original buildings house vast underground cellars comparable to those of famous European wineries. Visitors stroll the beautifully landscaped premises, tour the romantic underground cellars, and taste a variety of award-winning wines. Press blue button for more about Brotherhood, America's Oldest Winery.
Comments: Call for the dates of "Special Events" such as: Grapestomping.
Goold Orchards and Brookview Station Winery is located at 1297 Brookview Station Road, Castleton, NY. Goolds Orchards is 9 miles from downtown Albany on the east side of the Hudson River in the town of Schodack. Our farm has been in the Goold family since 1910. Our goal is to grow and sell only the highest quality apples. Goold Orchards has won the New York State apple consumer package contest and also Rensselaer County Farm Bureau's annual farm beautification award.
Our farm store features many varieties of apples including Macintosh, Crispin, Jonamac and Ida Red. The Store is open year-round with apples and pasteurized cider. Goold Orchard's sweet apple cider is freshly pressed in our own mill the old fashioned way, through oak racks. Goold's cider is made from a blend of sound, firm apples and flash pasteurized to insure a flavorful, safe, fresh juice. Quality and freshness are maintained by storage at near freezing temperature in our large refrigerated holding tanks. Press blue button for more about Brookview Station Winery and Festival.
Orchard Attractions Bakery Store Fall Festival - Including Brookview Station Wine Tent featuring farm wineries from across New York State Brookview Station Winery's Apple Wine Apple Pickin' Time
Colebrook Country Wines is located at 562 Colebrook Road, Gansevoort, NY 12831. We now have the following wines in stock: Elderberry, Strawberry/Rhubarb, Cherry, Peach, Apple, Red Currant, and Green Apple/Reisling. Free tastings of course! We can also customize a gift basket for any occasion, using our gourmet wine sauces, syrups, jellies and biscuits.
Cereghino Smith is located at 2583 Route 32, Bloomington, NY 12411, Ulster County in the Hudson Valley. Cereghino Smith is a small winery with an Old World approach. Paula Cereghino and Fred Smith produce artisanal, handcrafted wines in the Hudson Valley, New York using California and New York grapes to create blends such as Rock 'n Roll Red and Eaten by Bears. Press blue button for more about making wine at Cereghino Smith.
Enlightenment Wines is located in Clintondale, NY 12515, Ulster County in the Hudson Valley. Enlightenment wines is probably the smallest legal winery in NY State- a cult "nano" natural winery operating out a family farmstead in the Hudson Valley.
Using a low tech, gravity fed method and a radically different business model, Enlightenment wines produces cutting edge and absolutely original unfiltered meads and dry sparkling fruit wines in runs of under 100 cases at a time. Focusing on direct sales with its very own wine only CSA (Community Supported Alcohol ) Enlightenment Wines is actively attempting to redefine the modern winery as a ultra local person to person experience.
Press blue button to contact us about a guided home tasting for friends or family, or to learn more about Enlightenment Wines.
Whitecliff Vineyard is located at 331 McKinstry Road, Gardiner, NY 12525 in the Hudson Valley. Whitecliff Vineyard sits on 70-acres opposite the Shawangunk Mountain chain located west of the Hudson River (near New Paltz) and 60 miles north of New York City. It is one of nine wineries of the famed Shawangunk Wine Trail and is following in the tradition of French Huguenot settlers who brought wine making to this scenic valley over three centuries ago.
Whitecliff is working with European vinifera varietals such as Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc and Riesling, and quality hybrids like Seyval Blanc and Vignoles, including small plantings of Pinot Noir and Merlot. We are pioneering use of Gamay Noir grape in the Hudson Valley for a true Beaujolais-style Nouveau.
Whitecliff Vineyard is rooted in the centuries-old agricultural traditions of the Hudson Valley. Visit us and see how fertile soils and beautiful surroundings contribute to the vineyard, and are reflected in the fine, flavorful wines that are a vivid expression of this region—the oldest winemaking region in America. Visitors are invited to sample wines in our tasting room and enjoy the spectacular view of the Shawangunk cliffs from the deck. Press blue button for more about Whitecliff Vineyard.
Benmarl Vineyards is located at 156 Highland Avenue, Marlboro, NY 12542 in Ulster County. Benmarl Vineyards holds the NY State Farm Winery license #1 and is the acknowledged parent of the burgeoning farm winery industry that has brought fame to the wineries of New York State. Benmarl's fine wines have won acclaim throughout the world and prestigious awards. Benmarl's varietal and table wines are made, aged and bottled at the winery from grapes grown on the Benmarl Estate as well as from grapes of other growers.
The Miller family began wine growing as a hobby, saw it become a kind of privately sustained research station and eventually become what friends have described as "more a crusade than a business". It began appropriately on a vineyard in the Hudson River Valley. Wine has been made from the grapes of this region since the 17th century when the French Hugenots grew vines and made wine in nearby New Paltz. U.P. Hedrick, author of the Grapes of New York, called the Hudson region "the birthplace of American viticulture" citing a planting in 1827 at Croton Point as the nation's earliest commercially successful vineyard.
TIME Magazine described Benmarl and its eastern farm winery counterparts as "a new breed of winemakers, whose wines of fine quality and elegance are shaking California's throne." The highly respected "New York Times" wine columnist Frank Prial became interested in Benmarl and its Société when it sought his help in publicizing the need for legislative reform to encourage farm wineries in New York, and he described its wines as "remarkable examples of what dedication can produce." Author and wine authority Alixis Lichine wrote in his "Encyclopedia Of Wines And Spirits" that "Benmarl promises to be among the finest vineyards in the nation". Press blue button for more information about Benmarl Vineyards.
Glorie Farm Winery is located at 40 Mountain Road, Marlboro, NY 12542. Housed in a 1913 barn near the top of Mt. Zion Mountain, Glorie Farm Winery is one of the newest wineries in the Hudson River Valley Region.
Press blue button for information about Glorie Farm Winery.
Kedem Winery, producing kosher wines, is located at 1519 Route 9W in Marlboro, NY 12542 in Ulster County. Royal Wine Corporation operates Kedem Winery. Royal Wine has a heritage of perfection and family tradition which spans over 8 generations of superb wine production. With scores as high as 92 in Wine Spectator Magazine, Royal's wines have earned international recognition.
What Makes a Wine Kosher? A simple definition of “kosher,” is a food prepared in accordance with Jewish dietary laws. The term “kosher wine” refers to a wine that was made according to specific guidelines. Kosher does not represent a variety or style of winemaking and the fact that a wine is kosher has no effect on its taste. In other words, kosher wine is not like Chinese or Italian food, which are varieties of food. Since kosher law does not prohibit the use of specific wine styles, grape varieties, or origin, any wine made in accordance to these rules can be kosher. This explains the large variety of kosher wines available from around the world, including Argentina, Australia, South Africa, Spain, New York, California, France, Israel, Italy, among others.
Today, the range of grape varieties used for the production of kosher supervised wines has greatly expanded. Consequently, kosher wines are available in all varieties from around the world. Kedem Winery is open for tours and wine tastings. Press blue button for information about Kedem Winery.
Stoutridge Vineyards is located at 10 Ann Kaley Lane, Marlboro, NY 12542. We are members of the Shawangunk Wine Trail and the Meet Me In Marlborough Farm Trail. The vineyards are half a mile from the Hudson River on the south-east facing slopes of a ridge of land on which grapevines and fruit trees have been continuously planted for 200 years. The Marlboro area has a rich history of fruit and wine production and during the 1800's was the principal supplier of fresh fruit for New York City.
We specialize in Germanic style white wines from the Pinot Blanc, Vidal Blanc and Riesling varieties, and Northern Italian style red wines from the Pinot Noir, Sangiovese and Teroldego varieties.
The winery is currently housed in a picturesque and historic stone farmhouse known to elder locals as "The Homestead". The winery at Stoutridge Vineyard is a gravity flow design built into a hillside directly on the site of the pre-prohibition era Morano Winery (1902 - 1919). The old winery's foundation wall is all that remains of the historic structure, and it has been meticulously restored to become a beautiful front wall for the Stoutridge tasting room patio.
Press blue button to view the vineyards for Riesling, Pinot Noir & Teroldego, Sangiovese wines; view photos of Stoutridge Winery and grounds, and learn all about wine at Stoutridge Vineyards.
Adair Vineyards is located at 52 Allhusen Road, New Paltz, New York 12561, Ulster County in the historic Hudson Valley. The beauty of the land in the valley is legend. One needs only to recall the glorious paintings of the Hudson River School artistes to visualize the grandeur of this magnificent valley. We often compare a visit to Adair Vineyards to a step into one of those 19th century paintings. There are similarities. Asher Durand’s painting in 1840 The Solitary Oak appears on our wine label. And, we have a solitary oak standing at the head of our vineyard. In his painting are cows, horses, mountains, and a stream. Our winery is housed in a barn, over 200 years old, once occupied by cows and horses, and has a stream running by with the Shawangunk Mountains in the background.
The vineyard is located next to the winery. In order to maintain the highest quality, our wines are created firstly with estate-grown grapes and then supplemented with additional varieties grown at a local farm which we have a close working relationship.
In the wine cellar you will see how we make the wine, care for it to perfection and bottle it for our customer. Our wines range from dry to slightly sweet. Come to Adair Vineyards. Combine wine tasting at our winery with several of the other Hudson Valley wineries. Or stop off to see us on the way to some of the many historic and scenic sights. We know you will have a good time. Press blue button for more information about our wines and winery.
Baldwin Vineyards is located at 176 Hardenburgh Road, Pine Bush, New York 12566. Located 85 miles northwest of NYC in the Hudson River Valley Region, Baldwin Vineyards is situated on a 35 acre vineyard with a pasture like setting, complete with a stone home built by the Hardenburghs in 1786.
Proprietors, Patricia and Jack Baldwin, planted the first Vineyard in 1982 and a second vineyard in 1983. By 1985, both were working full time to create a micro winery which offers a wide array of different styles of wine for the discerning palate. Dry, creamy Chardonnays, a Brut Methode Champenois and Merlot for dry wine lovers. Dessert wine lovers will revel in the Late Harvest Riesling, a Raspberry Wine and an internationally acclaimed Strawberry Wine. A total of 24 different wines await wine lovers. Press blue button for more information about Baldwin Vineyards.
Brimstone Hill Vineyard & Winery is located at 61 Brimstone Hill Road, Pine Bush, New York 12566 in the beautiful historic Hudson Valley Region. Brimstone Hill Vineyard & Winery grows and produces elegant country Hudson River region wines. Visitors have a choice of eight graceful wines to taste. Brimstone Hill Vineyard & Winery's award winning wines have been pleasing the palatable senses of this region for over 25 years!
Our cozy tasting room is open year round! We welcome small and large groups to enjoy all four glorious seasons the valley has to offer. An appreciation for wine starts in the vineyard. At Brimstone Hill Vineyard & Winery, grape vines are all around us. Begin your visit walking through rows of tall slender vines, where each season teaches us to understand some aspect about the wine grape. Inside patrons are able to taste a variety of wines ranging from dry chilled whites, to toasty reds and sumptuous semi-sweet whites.
Press blue button for more about the Brimstone Hill Vineyard and Winery.
The Shawangunk Wine Trail is nestled between the famous Shawangunk Mountains and the majestic Hudson River in Ulster County, just 85 miles north of New York City. The Trail is composed of eleven family owned wineries and dozens of "Associate Members" dedicated to making a visit to the Hudson Valley a memorable experience.
While taking a tour of the wineries along the Trail, always in view of the mountains to the west, one is reminded of the cataclysmic forces of earlier geological periods when the earth heaved up forming the great folded ridge of conglomerate rock. And the more recent glacial period that scratched and gouged the scenic cliffs and formed the unique chain of emerald lakes perched atop the ridge. The eleven wineries on the Trail all follow the tradition of the fine winemaking established by the early French Huguenot settlers who brought their wine making expertise to this valley over 300 years ago. Each winery is different. Small to medium in size, all proud of their well crafted red and white wines that range from bone dry to dessert sweet. You will find sparkling wines, vinifera and French/American varietals and blends, and even some beautifully made fruit wines. This young, thriving industry has recently become well known for its prize winning wines across the nation. Throughout the year there are special events such as Lobster Fests, jazz concerts and strawberry festivals.
Scattered along the Trail are many special attractions, lodgings, B&B's and restaurants. While following the Trail the traveler could visit a thoroughbred horse farm, a honey farm with performing bears, exciting nature trails through the majestic mountain range an road side fruit and vegetable markets to delight all the senses. There is hang gliding, camping, parachuting, fishing, horseback riding, canoeing, country fairs, antiquing and a visit to the oldest street in America where the stone houses display the way life was lived in 1650.
In spring there are apple blossoms, strawberry picking and fresh flower sales. In summer, the College at New Paltz features a repertory theater and the Music in the Mountains Festival. There are several art galleries and numerous antique shops. And to top it off, literally, is a trip to Lake Minnewaska and Lake Mohonk Mountain House high atop the Shawangunks. The view from Skytop Point at Mohonk spans four different states. Press blue button for photos, names of wineries on the trail, and information about The Shawangunk Wine Trail. Also in Category Attractions | Places To Go
El Paso Winery is located on the westerly side of route 9W in the beautiful Hudson Valley Wine Region of New York State. Our winery tasting room is the barn of an original 125 year old farmstead. El Paso Winery gets its Spanish name from the original owner who emigrated from Uruguay, South America almost 30 years ago. His specialties were sweet wines, some of which we still produce today.
My husband and I purchased the winery in 1997 and our favorite wines are the wonderful dry reds and whites of New York State. El Paso Winery produces 20 wines; so, why not stop in for "a little taste of the Hudson Valley". Press blue button for more about El Paso Winery.
Magnanini Farm Winery & Restaurant is located at 172 Strawridge Road, Wallkill, NY 12589, Ulster County in the Hudson River Valley. What isn’t homemade at Magnanini is handmade. The personal touch is evident at Magnanini in everything from Rachel’s homemade delicacies; Richard’s proudest blends of wine, and to his father’s architectural work.
The property on which the vineyards and winery are located has been in the family since 1953, although it wasn’t until 1970 that Galba and Richard began planting wine grapes. “In 1965, I went to Europe. I was touring Europe and I saw American tourists drinking wines. I came back and decided to plant.” The harvest from the first planting was sold to home winemakers in the area. While the winemakers perfected their wines, Richard continued to do research on viticulture practices and winemaking techniques.
With the adoption of the Farm Winery Act in 1976, the Magnanini’s were encouraged to continue their efforts in the vineyards and eventually bottled 1,000 gallons for commercial sale in July 1984. Production at the winery has reached to 6,000 gallons. Press blue button for more about Magnanini Farm Winery & Restaurant. Also in Category Attractions | Places To Go
Chateau LaFayette Reneau Winery and Inn is located at Route 414, 7 miles north of Watkins Glen, in Hector, NY 14841. We cordially invite you to savor 140-acres of vineyards, ponds, and woodlands. Our brick house and renovated barn/winery are from an earlier, simpler time. The panoramic view of Seneca Lake is absolutely spellbinding. Your visit here is more than another trip to a winery. It's a vacation from daily stress. This is the ideal place to nurture wine & dreams.
Looking for a unique setting to savor our great wine? Enjoy a serene luncheon in our picnic area while gazing at the breathtaking views of Seneca lake and our vineyards. We are the most photographed winery in the State of New York. Press blue button for photos and more information about Chateau LaFayette Reneau.
Wineries and Wine Trails
Find a list of wineries in Westchester County and a list of
Hudson Valley Wineries, Hudson Valley Wine Trails, and Hudson Valley Winery Tours. Visit the wine tasting rooms where you can taste award-winning wines. Learn about the history of wine making as you tour the wineries in the Hudson Valley. Find winery locations, tasting menus, wine tasting options, and more about the wineries in Westchester County and the Historic Hudson Valley.
Visit the wineries in Westchester, New York. Book a room at one of the charming bed and breakfasts in Westchester and dine in one of Westchester's excellent restaurants. In the evening, see a play, go to an outdoor concert, or, just relax with friends, curl up with a good book, whatever you do, don't forget your glass of Hudson Valley wine.
Wineries in Westchester County are the Winery at St. George in Mohegan Lake, and Prospero Winery located in Pleasantville, New York.
Visit one or more of the wineries in the Hudson Valley and learn about the history of each winery. Book a trip to visit the wineries in the Hudson Valley. For a great day out on the winery trail, plan a tour of several wineries. Before embarking on your trip to the wineries in the Hudson Valley, read all about The Art of Wine Tasting.
Plan a vacation in the Hudson Valley of New York. The Hudson Valley offers a wealth of historic sites, magnificent scenery, and many outdoor activities. Activities in the Hudson Valley include boating on the Hudson River, hiking and biking trails through stunning landscape, birding and nature study in hundreds of peaceful sanctuaries and parks throughout Westchester County and the lower-Hudson Valley. The towns of the Hudson Valley are home to many award winning golf courses including Van Cortlandt Park Golf Course, America's oldest public golf course and the golf course at Mohonk, a 107 year-old historic landmark golf course.
The Historic Hudson Valley is home to the oldest wine making and grape-growing region in the United States. Brotherhood, America's Oldest Winery, is located in Washingtonville, New York in Orange County. Winemaking is an ancient and honored art, and nowhere is this more evident than at Brotherhood. The winery was established by a European émigré, John Jaques, who produced the first commercial vintage in 1839. Brotherhood has been in continuous operation since that time, making Brotherhood Winery the oldest winery in America. Brotherhood Winery is listed in the New York State Register of Historic Places and is listed as a National Historic Landmark.
Plan a winery tour in the Hudson Valley and experience the charming wine tasting rooms where you can taste some of the valley's award-winning wines. Tour the winery, meet the owners, and learn about the art of making wine. Have a delightful lunch outdoors, or end your day by dining al fresco overlooking the beautiful vineyards.
Visit the wineries in the Historic Hudson River Valley. The Hudson Valley offers more than 30 wineries, magnificent scenery, the majestic Hudson River, and the Hudson Highlands as a backdrop to the vineyards. See the stunning scenery that inspired a generation of artists, now known as the Hudson River School of Art, America's first artisitc fraternity. Taste the wines, visit the winemakers, learn about the history of each winery and about wine making.
Between visits to the wineries, go boating, hiking, birding, and take in the amazing landscape of the Hudson River Valley. Stop at a local farms in Westchester County where you can buy fresh produce to enjoy on a picnic out in the invigorating and refreshing air.
Experience kayaking in the Hudson River, historic sites, or just relax at one of the beautiful parks in Westchester County. When its time to eat, have a picnic at a nearby park and enjoy the produce from a local farm. Dine on freshly baked bread, cheeses, fresh fruit, and your favorite bottle of Hudson Valley wine.
The Art of Winemaking
Winemaking is an art. Grapes vary by climate, type and soil. There are several hundred widely different cultivars of grapes grown in the United States. The cultivars are grouped into four types: European (Vitis vinifera), American (Vitis labrusca and its derivatives), Muscadine (Vitis rotundifolia) and French hybrids, crosses of V. vinifera cultivars with disease-resistant wild American species. There are many different styles of wine, and there are many ways to make each style. No two winemakers seem to agree on the "exact or correct" way to make wine.
Types Of Wine
The types of grapes used to make a wine are the most important factor in the taste of the wine. However, the flavors are also affected by other factors such as soil, exposure to sunlight, climate, how the grapes are handled and fermented, types of yeast used, whether the wine is aged in wood, etc. Because of this, the same type of wine can be produced in several different regions, yet, taste different.
Varietal refers to the grape variety used to make a particular wine. Serious wine-producing countries and states regulate the amount of a particular grape that make up a particular wine. In California and Washington any wine referred to by the name of the grape (Chardonnay, for example) must be at least 75% of that grape; most varietals in Oregon must be 90% of the named grape; and Alsace requires 100%.
History of Wine
Wine has been around for thousands of years. From ancient civilizations to modern times, wine has been produced and enjoyed by peasants and kings. Evidence of wine production dates as far back as 6000 BC, to early Mesopotamian culture. The Mesopotamians were the first known people to cultivate grapes.
The ancient Egyptians recorded the harvest of grapes on stone tablets and the walls of their tombs. The Egyptians loved wine and imported what they could not grow. The Egyptian Pharaohs were especially fond of wine. Some of them were buried with bottles of wine in order to make their journey to the underworld more tolerable. Wine was a social drink in Ancient Egypt and great importance was given to its production and consumption. The Egyptians were not the first to grow wine, but they were the first to record the process of wine making and celebrate its values.
Wine in Ancient Greece and Rome
Wine in ancient Greece was praised and immortalized by poets, historians and artists. Wine also played a role in the religion of Ancient Greece associated with the god Dionysus. Like the Egyptians, ordinary citizens did not consume wine. It was considered a privilege of the upper classes.
During the time of the Roman Empire, the production of wine spread throughout Europe. At this time, wine became available to the common citizens. Some cities even built bars on almost every street in order to promote wine. Roman wine was said to be sweet rather than dry. Pure red or white wines were almost unthinkable in Ancient Rome. The Romans believed that flavoring was more important than the original taste of the wine. They added such flavors as fermented fish sauce, garlic and onion to their wines.
The Dark Ages
During the “Dark Ages”, wine production was mainly kept alive through the efforts of monasteries. As the Church extended their monasteries, they began to develop some of the finest vineyards in Europe. Although most wine production was done in monasteries, some religious believers diluted their wine with water in order to make it "safer" for them to drink. Since most of Europe lacked a reliable source of drinking water, wine was considered to be an important part of their everyday diet. During this time, people also begin to favor stronger, heavier wines.
14th and 15th Century
England began importing wine from Germany when they lost Bordeaux to the French in the 14th century. Portugal also shipped wine to England, which helped keep the two countries on friendly terms. During Shakespeare's time, wine was very much a staple of the diet. Beer was a favored alternative, yet wine enjoyed more attention. It was during this time, when wine began to diversify and consumers began to value the concept of variety in their drinking. Citizens of Shakespeare's age clearly enjoyed drinking wine and began to discuss its virtues and pitfalls with greater enthusiasm than in the previous centuries. By the end of the 16th Century, for the first time, an abundant supply of fresh drinking water was available to London and so the wine industry was moved into a new age.
17th and 18th Century
The wine industry saw a brief decline in the 17th century. Politics and religious propaganda did little to promote the drinking of wine for pleasure. Wine also had to face the rival of a clean and readily available supply of drinking water. Despite all of this, many new developments helped the wine industry keep its popularity. The invention of better glass making, the cork and other accessories, as well as better methods of production helped to promote wine in the 17th century.
Wine went through several changes during the 18th century. England witnessed many of these due to its political relations with France. Because of the strained relations with France, the English were without a major source of wine and had to look elsewhere for their drink. They turned to Portugal, Holland, and South Africa for their wine.
Despite their strained relations with the British, the French wine industry soared in the 18th century. Many people feel that this was when the wines of Bordeaux really began to flourish. The merchants who frequented the Bordeaux region came from Holland, Germany, Ireland and even Scandinavia. As a result, Bordeaux was able to successfully trade wine for coffee and other much sought after items from the New World, which helped cement the role of wine in the growing industry of world trade.
During the early 19th century, when the British were fighting the Napoleonic Wars, they were unable to get a steady supply of wine from France, and instead turned to Portugal. Port became the favored wine in England during this time.
Champagne also gained favor in the 19th century. The French widow Nicole-Barbe Clicquot-Ponsardin is credited with making Champagne the celebrity wine of the world. She found easier ways to remove the sediment from Champagne and replaced it with wine, sugar, and brandy. She also organized the production of Champagne so that it could be done in an assembly line, making this beverage truly "modern."
The wines of New World began challenging those of the Old World in the 19th century. Thomas Jefferson was convinced that the lack of fine wines in America was driving his fellow citizens to drink too much hard liquor. This idea carried on after his death and influenced the way Americans viewed wine. Ohio was the first region in America to successfully grow grapes for wine. Its glory soon faded, however, and California soon took its place.
Although the 19th century is considered to be the golden age of wines for the Bordeaux and Burgundy regions, it was not without tragedy. Around 1863 many of the French grapevines began to suffer from a mysterious disease. It was soon discovered that this disease was the caused by the Phylloxera aphid. Some French winemakers at this time, moved to the Rioja region in northern Spain, and taught the Spaniards to make wine from local Tempranillo grapes.
The last 90 years have seen a revolution in the wine industry. The scientific background of wine making has developed greatly, allowing for many things that were once impossible to be accomplished. An example of this would be refrigeration. Before the 1940s, wine was supplied to people according to their geographic location. After the development of refrigeration, it was easier for wineries to control the temperature of their fermentation process. This enabled high quality wines to be produced in hot climates.
Machines that harvest grapes more quickly have allowed vineyards to become larger and more efficient. Grapes can also be harvested during day or night, allowing vineyards to control the temperature and climate when grapes are harvested.
Modern wine makers can now achieve total control of every stage of wine making, from harvesting and crushing to bottling. Though recent advances in technology have benefited the wine industry, they have also led to the temptation to produce more wine at the expense of quality. Wine makers face the challenge of producing wine for a larger market without losing the character and individual flavor of their wines. More countries are producing more varieties of wine than ever before. Advances in technology will ensure that this trend will continue, with more countries producing more wine, and better wine.
A well-cared-for vineyard will often outlive the person who planted it. Adequate soil preparation is very important. This preparation should begin at least a year before the vineyard is to be set out. It should be designed to subdue weeds, to improve the physical condition of the soil, and to add humus. This is easy to do before the vineyard is established but is difficult to do after the vines are in place. A soil sample should be taken to determine potassium, magnesium, soil pH and organic matter so that adjustments can be made before planting. The need for keeping a relatively high organic matter content in the soil cannot be overemphasized. A high humus content not only is essential for holding moisture, but it also improves the physical condition of the soil.
Any experienced winemaker spends most of their time in the vineyard. Vineyards influence the final product of wine more so than winery manipulations and procedures can ever accomplish. Careful attention should be given to both climate and soil conditions before planting wine grapes. Particular varieties excel only in specific kinds of climate and soil conditions.
A regions climate greatly affects the types of varieties that are available for a wine producer. In selecting a grape cultivar, you must consider the number of growing degree days, the length of the growing season and the frequency of exposure to low temperatures. The time required to mature grape fruit varies with location and climate and is very dependent on the amount of heat experienced by the vine. The frequency of very cold weather will determine winter survival of the vines.
A gravelly or sandy loam soil is considered best for grapes, but they will do well on many soil types. The soil should have a fairly high water-holding capacity, not be waterlogged at any time during the year, have 3 to 5 feet of usable depth depending on texture, be of at least medium fertility and slightly acid. A soil too poor to grow other crops will not be satisfactory for a vineyard. The prospective grower should keep certain general characteristics of soils in mind in choosing a site. A sandy soil warms up rapidly and will mature a crop a few days earlier than will a clay soil but a sandy soil tends to be less fertile and to have a smaller water-holding capacity. A soil containing too much clay will also form a crust in hot weather that will adversely affect water infiltration. The water holding capacity of the soil strongly affects the final flavor of the wine.
Grape vines are typically purchased from nurseries where they have already been grafted to prevent phylloxera infestation. New vines typically will not produce significant yields of fruit until the 3rd or 4th year. This is a very important point in terms of risk assessment and a business point of view. If the crop is lost via fire, flood, or some other natural disaster or accident, the winery would lose 3-5 years without any income. This makes the vineyard an extremely high-risk asset.
Several factors must be considered in deciding on the best planting distances for a vineyard. First, there should be enough space between rows to allow for convenient tractor cultivation and spraying; second, there should be enough space between plants in the row so that adjoining vines will not intermingle too much; and third, sufficient space should be allowed so that there will be little competition between the roots of adjoining plants for nutrients and water.
General Winery Operations
The vine cycle depends largely upon the regions climate. In California, the vine cycle begins around April 1st when new shoots elongate during April and May and the vine flowers around May 15th. Tiny berries begin to grow but remain green and hard until about July 15th. Veraison begins then and the berries begin to develop color and to soften. Fruit is usually harvested around September 15th. The harvest date is largely dependent upon the variety, the location, and the weather.
Before wine is removed or harvested in the vineyard, the amount of sugar in the grape must be measured. The acidity level must also be measured before harvesting the grapes from the vine. Two common methods are titration (grams of tartaric acid per 100 mL of juice) and pH.
Once the sugar is measured, the wine maker can estimate the alcohol concentration of the finished product. These methods have all been developed to aid the vineyard in giving the winery the best possible grape for the desired purpose.
The grapes are crushed to make the juice accessible to the yeast. Crushed grapes are called the must. The must is made up of 80% juice, 16% skins (wine pigment), 4% seeds (tannins = wine flavor and aging characteristics). Therefore, controlling the amount of contact achieved between the juice, skins, and seeds is critical to the flavor, color, and overall final product of the wine.
Several additions may be made to the must before pressing it. SO2 is commonly added to inhibit oxidation and kill undesirable micro-organisims. However, if the winery chooses to put SO2 into their wine, US law requires the winery to write "contains sulfites" on the bottle label.
Although in most cases the winery is aware of the amount of sugar in the grapes they are crushing, sometimes winemakers wish to add sugar to the must to either enhance flavor or raise the alcohol concentration. The act of adding sugar to the must after crushing is called chapitalization. Chapitalization is illegal in California and in southern Europe. Adjustments may also be made to the must’s acidity.
Pressing is done to separate the skins, seeds, and any other non-juice must item from the juice. There are several different types of presses used in the winery industry. Some of the more popular ones are the screw, membrane/bladder, moving head, and basket presses. The basket press has a piston which pushes the fruit down in a cylinder. The moving head press is similar to the basket press except it presses horizontally as opposed vertically.
Racking, Fermentation, and Aging
Racking is the process of transferring juice or wine away from the settled lees. Titration and centrifugation are alternative means by which a winemaker could use instead of racking.
Fermentation is typically initiated by adding 1 to 2 percent by volume of cultured yeast to the juice or must. Although there are many different kinds of fermenting vessels used throughout the global wine industry, in the United States, most modern wineries use stainless steel tanks. The fermentation process is regulated closely by managing the temperature of the vessel and yeast. This requires that refrigeration jackets or heat exchangers be installed on the fermenting vessel.
The most common way wine was aged in the past, and the tradition persists to this day is via barrels. Barrel aging is typically used for red wines and adds vanilla, spicy, and sometimes smoky flavors to the wine.
French oak is the primary type of wine barrel used today staying in line with a strong European wine making tradition. French oak is the barrel of choice for chardonnay. France uses somewhat of an appellation system that designates the forest from where the wood was purchased to make the barrel (i.e. Limousine forest) and hence some wineries specify not only the country but also the specific forest location of the wood that used. Due to the long lasting reputation and high labor costs, French wine barrels run between $700 and $800 per barrel.
Although new to the world wine making industry, American oak wine barrels on a number of occasions have been proven to be capable of producing high quality wines and thus their usage is on the rise. American oak is the barrel of choice for Australian Shiraz because of the pleasing distinct flavors that complement that style of wine. American barrels are less expensive than the average French barrel ranging between $250 and $300 per barrel. The current trend is that as the price of wine barrels increase the usage of American oak barrels increases as well. Because American barrels have lower labor costs and are relatively new thus not having a long consistent history, they are substantially less expensive than French barrels.
Outside of the French barrels made by the French and American barrels made by the Americans, there are Americans who make barrels using imported French wood and French who make barrels using imported American wood. The prices vary slightly from the barrels described in the two sections above.
The average useful life of both American and French barrels are roughly 5 years. However, innovations such as inner stay oak slates or carving away a few layers of wood inside the barrel can extend the life of a barrel up to 10 years. Furthermore, all barrels should be topped off roughly once a week to eliminate void air space.
Blending, Fining, Filtration and Bottling
Wine coming from different batches, varieties, vineyards, fruit maturities, and wine making treatments are sometimes blended by the winemaker in order to produce a more uniform final product.
Fining Agents are used to take out undesirable particles, which tend to make the wine "hazy". By fining the wine, the wines clarity is greatly improved. This is critical to white, blush, and sparkling wines where clarity is very important to the average consumer.
Wine is then filtered to further clarify and stabilize the wine.
The last step before the wine leaves the winery is bottling. Most wines are aged in the bottles for a few months up to a few years depending on the wine and the winery.
Source: For the complete article "The Art of Winemaking", see www.winecountryguide.com, 2006.