The Finger Lakes region of New York is becoming one of the top wine destinations in the world, and with over 120 wineries on eleven lakes, there's something for everyone, from places serving up only dry white and red vinifera to locations specializing in sweet wines and slushies. In addition to its thriving wine industry, the Finger Lakes are known for their rolling hills, spectacular vistas, waterfall filled glens, and beautiful lakes. Luckily for us, some wineries offer not only delicious wine, but also amazing views. Here are five wineries in the Finger Lakes where you can enjoy both the lakes and grapes.
Overlooking the East side of Seneca Lake, Atwater Vineyards offers an incredible view of the lake and it’s vineyards. During the summer, you can sit out on their deck and enjoy glasses of wine until the sun goes down. They also host dinners in the vineyards where you can sit amongst the vines and enjoy the lake view. While you’re taking in the scenery, I suggest a glass of their sparkling 2013 Blanc de Blanc or the fruit-forward 2017 Pinot Gris.
On the opposite side of Seneca Lake, Lakewood Vineyards has a stunning view of their vineyards from their both their tasting room and the deck, which during the summer is also set up for tastings. You can do a flight of their dry wines, like the very berry and peppery 2017 Lemberger, or a flight of their sweeter wines, like the fun and fruity Bubbly Catawba.
Photo Credit: Heron Hill Vineyards
With its magnificent vaulted ceilings and expansive terrace, Heron Hill Vineyards on Keuka Lake is a must-see for anyone looking to enjoy the lakes and grapes. During the summer, you can enjoy a meal at their Blue Heron Cafe and live music while overlooking the vineyard and lake. While you’re taking in the views, you can do a flight of just Rieslings from different vineyards, offering a look into the microclimates of the lakes.
Just up the road from Heron Hill, you can enjoy a view of the lakes while diving into the history of the region. Dr. Konstantin Frank led the way for the use of European varietals in the Finger Lakes, and his family is continuing this legacy by continuing to innovate. Sip a glass of one of their signature wines like the 2017 Dry Riesling or explore a new wine like the 2017 Rkatsiteli, on the deck for a great view of the vineyard and Keuka Lake. If you’re looking for a more in-depth experience, do the 1886 Terrace Tasting to enjoy wine paired with food, and a beautiful view of the lakes and grapes.
Photo Credit: Toro Run Winery
Their slogan is “Come for the wine, stay for the view”, and they definitely deliver on that promise. Regardless of season, Toro Run Winery is offering grand views of Cayuga Lake from their tasting room, deck and lawn. Enjoy Spanish style tapas while taking in the magnificent vista, and pair it with a glass of their 2016 Pinot Meunier, a grape commonly found in Champagne but rarely produced on its own.
About the Author:
Kate Meyers Emery is a Finger Lakes and local wine evangelist, sharing the love and knowledge of her region through the classes she teaches and in her writing.