New York is not often thought of as iconic wine country, but travel upstate and you’ll discover the beautiful region of Finger Lakes, which has some 50 years of high quality wine production to its name.
This area has almost 4,000 hectares of rolling vineyards and it is overflowing with all the typical sophistication that comes hand in hand with idyllic wine country. Named the fourth most popular wine destination by TripAdvisor, it has everything that the wine enthusiast could possibly wish for.
Stay at a quaint bed and breakfast, or opt for a more traditional hotel with breathtaking lake views; and for dinner, sample the cuisine of the local chefs who push the limits of culinary genius with the abundant flavours of the region.
Miranda Polmanteer/iloveny.comFinger Lakes is known for its signature Riesling, a sweet white wine with German origins. The high acidity of the Riesling, as well as the flavours of fruit and honey, make the mouth water for more after each and every sip.
If you really want to get a taste of these fabulous regional wines, there are some great wine trails to check out. The Keuka Lake Wine Trail winds through seven wineries, each with its distinct flavours and processes, while the Seneca Lake Wine Trail is geared towards the more hardcore wine-lover, as it takes in some 34 different wineries.
While you’re out there exploring the region’s 100 wineries, you’ll also stumble upon kilometres and kilometres of hikable forests, fields and lakesides. There are also the beautiful blue Finger Lakes to discover – a virtual playground for those who enjoy fishing, kayaking and boating.
The region also plays host to a variety of museums, including the Mark Twain Connection. It’s said that Twain spent 20 of his summers in the region, finding inspiration in the landscape. Alternatively, you can check out the historic villages of Downtown Elmira, Penn Yan, Hammondsport Square and Corning's Gaffer District.
Finger Lakes is a popular vacation spot for New Yorkers, and has managed to remain a relatively well-kept secret. However, its popularity worldwide is starting to skyrocket. This quaint little area may not be so little within the next few years, so why not take the opportunity to experience it before everyone else does?