Swirl the glass and watch the legs fall down its sides. Sniff in the complex aroma the wine offers. Sip a taste of the wine and it’s like an explosion of grapes hitting my tongue as the tease of the wine tasting becomes a reality. The cool, sweet Riesling awakens my taste buds, and with each sip I unfold more layers of the wine. The floral aroma, the hint of pineapple, the apricot and honey all evoke taste memories of the German Rieslings that I so love. How could they replicate that grape here in New York? Who discovered that the banks of the Fingers Lakes provided just the right climate to grow these fantastic grapes? Regardless how, why, or who, I’m glad that this area has proven a supple ground for these grapes, a proper home and terroir. The intricacies of the flavors is noticeably different from one winery to the next as we work our way through the Finger Lakes Wine Country of New York.
In the hallmark European style of terroir, each country and region and vineyard all yield different flavors in their wines. The particular environment in which the grape is raised plays a huge role in the resulting wine. And the more developed your palate, the more you can appreciate the subtle differences!
So for now we ride from one winery to the next, hoping to tantalize our taste buds and learn a bit more about the region and the wines. Rieslings and Pinor Noirs are the region’s calling. These grapes flourish here and word spread quickly because now there are wineries dotted throughout the region. On a tour through you could follow a number of wine trails, like the Seneca Wine Trail or Cayuga Lake Wine Trail.
Over 120 wineries offer their specialty for you to try, and I doubt you’ll leave the tour without a crate full of wine bottles in your arms. Besides the tantalizing wines to try, the visual landscapes are breathtaking, Over fields and acres of grapes can be seen the peaceful waters of the eleven Finger Lakes. You have the chance to tour the vineyard, touch the vines, enter the processing facility, and then enjoy a glass of your house favorite on the vineyard’s patio. The allure of upstate New York’s bucolic countryside and rolling hills is further complimented by the impressive wines they are able to produce from the land.
Plan your visit in the summer or fall, and stay at one of the charming bed & breakfast’s that will make the region feel like home. Draw straws for who will spit their wine in the bucket at the tastings and be the designated driver, and then take a few days to really explore the region. All of the advantages of upstate New York are here, from hiking and kayaking to biking and of course, wine tasting! Be sure to visit the Finger Lakes Wine Region when you’re next in New York!