Saturday, January 26, 2008

Finger Lakes News & Notes - Jan. 26 2008

Mrs Wino & I picked up some terrific bargains during the Seneca Lake Wine Trail's Bargain Bash weekends, like Wagner Alta B Blush for $3.99!!! Yessss!!! And as the days of winter draw on, the end of January lets me know that Spring is now not too far away. And I dream of those vats and barrels of Finger Lakes wine turning into delicious bottles that will be tasted soon. Ahhhhh.......

- This just in from NYWGF: At the San Francisco Wine Competition earlier this month "Swedish Hill Winery dominated the (New York) winners with both Best of Class accolades (White Doobie Blues and Viking Red), plus 4 of the Golds (those two plus 2006 Vidal Blanc 2005 Late Harvest Vignoles) and sister winery Goose Watch snagging a Gold for its Golden Spumante. Other Golds went to Chateau Lafayette Reneau 2006 Dry Riesling, Lucas Vineyards Two Boat Red, Prejean Winery 2006 Semi-Dry Riesling, and White Springs Winery 2006 Riesling Red Label." Many of My Favorites in this group, including that delicious Goose Watch Golden Spumante, made from the Diamond grape. See the complete competition results at

- Some beat the winter blues with Wine On Ice

- Finger Lakes grapes used in study, shows dental health benefits

- Super Bowl head coach grew up in the Finger Lakes area

- Report shows Finger Lakes tourism spending increased 5.9% in 2006

- Cayuga Lake Wine Trail kicks off 25th Anniversary with Mardi Gras event

- Check out the artists at The ARTS of the Southern Finger Lakes. Great Talent!!!

- The wintertime is a nice time to visit the Finger Lakes

- Cornell graduate doing well at Two Washington state wineries

- Rural Tourism Conference highlights ways for rural business to succeed

- Michigan wineries deal with rowdy wine tasting groups

- Hazlitt's Red Cat wine very popular with T3 Series Race car drivers

- Finger Lakes International Wine Competition dates are announced

- Finger Lakes born author writes book about champion horse

- has now posted all of Sheila Livadas' excellent Finger Lakes winery profiles. This is an excellent resource. I keep telling her that she should write a book of these profiles.

- Red Tail Ridge Winery has some furry Crew Members : )

- Local BnB owner reviews Finger Lakes wine at his Middle Finger Lakes Wine Guide website

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Your Chance to Win a 4 Day Finger Lakes Getaway

- Morgen Mclaughlin writes an excellent blog at the
website and, just today, I see that she has posted that they are giving away a 4 day Getaway to The Finger Lakes with Lodging at The Inn at Glenora and the best wine, food, and sights that The Finger Lakes offers. The deadline to enter is April 15. Be sure to visit the Finger Lakes Wine Country Blog and enter.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Upcoming Finger Lakes Wine Events - Jan/Feb '08

Check out the following upcoming Finger Lakes Wine Events:

Polar Passport, Dec 3 2007 - Apr 13 2008
Seneca Lake Wine Trail
Visit the Trail during the best time of year: the off season! At only $10 plus tax, the Polar Passport gives residents and visitors alike a convenient and affordable way to enjoy many of the wineries on the Seneca Lake Wine Trail.

Between the Lakes Winter Wine Party, Jan 12
Join the participating wineries between Cayuga and Seneca Lake for Winter Fun! Come and enjoy hor d'oeuvres and wine tastings.

Bargain Bash, Jan 12 - Jan 21
Seneca Lake Wine Trail
Unlike our other events, this week long sales event does not require tickets. Think of Bargain Bash as being like a big, Trail-wide spring cleaning, garage sale! Me & Mrs. Wino will be out on the Trail hunting for bargains this weekend.

January White Sale, Jan 12 - Jan 13, Noon - 5:00 PM
at Swedish Hill Vineyard
Stock up for those long winter days with your favorite white wines!

Winter Wine-Speak at the Creek, Jan 19, Noon - 1:00 PM
at Six Mile Creek Vineyard
Improve your palate, vocabulary, and overall wine knowledge. Classes are suited for both seasoned and novice wine lover. Call to reserve. 800-260-0612. 12:00-1:00PM.

Wine On Ice, Jan 25 - Jan 26
Session I: Friday 5:30pm – 9:00pm, Session II: Saturday 12:00pm – 4:00pm
Session III: Saturday 5:30pm – 9:00pm
Take part in a wonderful way for the Finger Lakes area to take the edge off the chilly evenings. Held at First Arena in Elmira, participants are invited into the building to take to the ice to sample some of the area's premier wines. Entertainment will fill the air as local restaurants fill tummies and local craft businesses filled the shopping bags of this year's attendees. Check back often for details so you don't miss this wonderful winter tradition!
First Arena, North Main & Gray Streets, Elmira, NY 14901

On Saturday January 26, from 12:00 to 5:00 PM, McGregor Vineyard Winery is holding their annual Robbie Burns Day Celebration. This is a great way to beat the winter blues and celebrate all things Scottish! The vineyard and winery are located on the east side of Keuka Lake in the heart of the Finger Lakes and has a beautiful view of the Keuka Lake Bluff. Traditional Scottish foods are being prepared and samples will be offered to visitors to compliment their wine tasting. Local harpist Trudy Moon will perform during the event from 1-4 pm. This event also serves as a fundraiser for the Manor Nursing Home in Penn Yan , NY .
There is a nominal charge of $10 per person/$18 per couple ($8/$15 for McGregor Clan Club Members) which includes the food and wine samples, a souvenir McGregor wine glass and $1 of this fee per person is donated directly to the Manor Nursing Home in Penn Yan. For additional information on this event or others, please call the winery at 1-800-272-0192 or 607-292-3999.

February 1st - 3rd, 2008 (Friday - Sunday) Here's the deal! Our famous Cajun cuisine starts on Thursday and the party weekend starts on
Friday with live music, costumes, beads, trinket and doubloons.
Don't miss our Saturday Mardi Gras Wine Tour.
Meet at the Village Tavern Saturday (February 2nd) morning for the New Orleans style continental breakfast, board the buses decked out with beads & leis, be escorted to the wineries on Seneca Lake with lunch included along the way!
You'll be back in time for the Parade (that's at 4:15) and the evening entertainment!
Seating is limited and will sell out FAST. So call to get your tickets right away! 607-569-2528
The winery tour is a prepay event of $55.99 per person and the event is held rain, shine, sleet or snow!
Village Tavern, Hammondsport NY

Mardi Gras at the Wineries, Feb 2, 9:00 AM
Cayuga Wine Trail
Start your Super Bowl weekend by joining us at our 6th Annual Mardi Gras event. This year we're starting this event an hour earlier at 9:00am so you'll have plenty of time to visit the east side wineries. When you visit King Ferry and Long Point wineries you'll receive a festive Mardi Gras mask plus Mardi Gras beads. Throughout the day you’ll receive strings of Mardi Gras beads, a wine glass, a chance to win exciting prizes, plus a wine and food sample at each of the 16 wineries. Participants are eligible to win one of our Grand Prizes by turning in your ticket at the end of the event. Grand prizes are a wine refrigerator stocked with a sampler case of wine, a two night stay at A Wicher Garden Bed & Breakfast redeemed during our Holiday Shopping Spree event and a $50.00 dinner gift certificate from Maxi's Supper Club and Oyster Bar.
Gift Certificates are available for all our events. Tickets can be purchased at any Wegmans store through their That's the Ticket Program at their Customer Service desk( used to be able to purchase at the Video Dept.).
Cayuga Wine Trail, NY

Be Mine With Red WIne, Feb 9 - Feb 10, Noon - 5:00 PM
at Goose Watch Winery
Sweetheart of a Red Sale! Surprise your special Valentine with some of our delicious Reds! Numerous red wine discounts. Noon - 5:00PM.
5480 Route 89, Romulus, NY 14541

Chocolate & Wine Weekend, Feb 9 - Feb 10
Seneca Lake Wine Trail
Enjoy a self-guided tour around beautiful Seneca Lake. Pick up your gift item at your assigned starting winery then start sampling chocolates, or foods prepared with chocolate, creatively matched with their wines. Tickets-$25.00

Chocolate Wine and Roses, Feb 9 - Feb 10
at Americana Vineyards
A free rose, with purchase, for the ladies. Experience our wines paired with chocolate desserts.
4367 East Covert RoadInterlaken, NY 14847

Sweet Sensation Weekend, Feb 9 - Feb 10, 9:30 AM - 6:00 PM
at Cobblestone Farm Winery
Experience our wine, chocolate, and other sweet treats.
Contact Information
5102 Route 89Romulus, NY 14541

MadderLake Cafe Wine Tasting Group. One Sunday each month the MadderLake Cafe will feature great wine, food, and conversation. Our tasting group will feature at least one guest winemaker or wine professional from the area. The wines will be tasted blind and rated by the group with discussion to follow. It’s a great way to exercise your palate and to be introduced to wines that you might never taste otherwise. Everyone is invited to attend from beginning wine lovers to professionals – there will be something for everyone! Each guest will bring one bottle of wine of their choice that follows the parameters of the tasting (not to exceed $15.00 in cost). We will include a few of our favorite wines, set up the tasting and provide appetizers throughout the evening. The tasting is limited to 14 guests and the cost is $15.00/each plus the bottle of wine. Jan. 27th – New world reds from Argentina, Chile, Spain, New Zealand, and Australia Feb. 17th – Pinot Noir from around the World, March 16th – Dry white wines from the Finger Lakes and North America For information, call at 315-781-2424 or email at

The New York Wine & Culinary Center has a variety of Wine & Food Classes and Events. Click here for their schedule.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Surprising Wine Survey

In the most recent Wine Press newsletter, the excellent and informative e-newsletter that is published by The New York Wine & Grape Foundation, a new survey from WineOpinions was highlighted. It showed that, "among frequent wine consumers, the lingering perception that Riesling is “a sweet white wine” diminished their appreciation of the wine and their interest in trying it. Overall, German Rieslings were most highly rated and New York Rieslings the lowest despite (New York Rieslings') consistent winnings in major wine competitions and critical acclaim among wine critics". The Wine Press went on to say that "This may well be due to the fact that New York wines have very limited distribution, so many of the respondents may not have actually tried them."
But although it is troubling in itself that Riesling still retains this "sweet white" perception, that's not the part that surprised me the most. I visited the website and perused some of the 'sample' survey data that is available for free (you must pay to get the full research).
The survey results for one of the questions was a bit shocking to me. The question was "On a wine label, a year like 2001 refers to ...", with the possible answers being
- Year grapes were harvested
- Year wine was made
- Year wine was bottled
- Don't Know

Did you choose the correct answer?
In the Marginal Wine Consumer group, 46% Incorrectly answered "Year Wine was Bottled", and only 21% Correctly answered "Year Grapes Harvested". In the Core Wine Consumer Group, 28% answered Incorrectly, and overall one-third of the respondents answered Incorrectly. Furthermore, only 44% of the Core Group and 45% of the Marginal Group answered that the Wine Vintage date is "Very Important".
Maybe I've become too much of a wine geek, but it seems as though this should be basic wine information that most wine consumers should know and this should be very important information to them for a variety of reasons, including for correct aging information, for validating that the bottle contains (per law) the majority of the grape as labeled, and for correct vintage researching of the growing conditions and harvest quality for that year. Maybe I'm making too big of a deal out of this, but if you disagree or agree, please send me your comments.
To see how much wine knowledge that you have, here are some fun wine quizzes to try: (All of you should answer Question #40 correctly!!!)