“It's a smile, it's a kiss, it's a sip of wine ... it's summertime!” ―Kenny Chesney
Even with Covid 19 last year we had a pretty nice summer, but this summer we plan to take advantage of everything we can. Go to the wineries for picnics, explore new places, revisit old favorites, go hiking, biking and spend lots of time on the water. Here's the first installment of new wineries we've already visited. We plan on a busy summer.
Billsboro Winery is committed to crafting dry classic European varietal wines grown by Seneca Lake’s best vineyards. They're focus is on small scale production, which allows them to give more attention to providing a high quality product for their customers. Tastings are done in their century old barn, which sits on an idyllic 60 acres overlooking the northern end of Seneca Lake.
Billsboro Winery works in tandem with Atwater Vineyard for 15 years . The two share production space on the Atwater property, and the Billsboro location is used only for retail events. While Atwater is also a vineyard that grows their own grapes, Billsboro purchases grapes from three local growers and keeps them separate during production at Atwater.
We enjoyed a bottle of 2019 Riesling. It had notes of lime peel and ginger with a juice peach finish. It sounds a little sweet but it definitely was a wonderful dry riesling.Castel Grisch
Castel Grisch was established in 1983 by a Swiss German couple, They are devoted to providing the best experience and wine for its visitors. The vineyard sets on a gorgeous site with breathtaking views of Seneca Lake and is home to 40 acres of vines ranging from native varieties, to Vinifera varieties.We enjoyed a bottle of 2017 Semi-Dry Riesling with our picnic. It's advertised as fresh and breezy, brimming with zesty lemons and apple blossoms, with bright citrus and peach flavors. It was good but definitely not as good as others we've had. The vineyard offers a Festival of Lights in December and January, which includes animals, dinosaurs, colorful flowers and a 50ft tall Christmas tree. The dinosaurs actually stay on display until March, but can still be seen along the back road for the vineyards. They were very impressive.
Finger Lakes Distilling
Finger Lake Distilling is a New York State Farm Distillery, which means they’re a small operation making a handcrafted product. They use locally grown fruits and grains to make high quality, handcrafted spirits. Their vodka and gin are made with locally grown grapes. They produce mcKenzie Whiskey.
The design of their distillery was inspired by the classic style of Scottish whisky distilleries, with its white walls, black trim, and elegant pagoda roof. Inside the distillery is spacious and sunlit, with the stills and barrels full of slowly aging whiskey viewable from the tasting room.The view from the tasting room.
Six Mile Creek Vineyards is one of the oldest members of the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail. They opened their doors in 1987. The first year of production they only produced 250 gallons of wine, but have since expanded and now produce over 10,000 gallons, as well as a full line of grape based spirits and liqueurs.
Six Mile Creek's tasting room resides inside a beautifully restored 19th century Dutch Colonial Barn.
We enjoyed a bottle of their Reserve Riesling. It had soft notes of pineapple and apricot. Zesty lemon and apple flavors with a long flinty finish. It's a dry Riesling with just the right amount of brightness to enhance your picnic lunch.
You can read about other wineries we've visited in the Finger Lake area at the following links.
Finger Lakes Wineries (VI)
Finger Lakes Wineries (Part V)
Finger Lakes Wineries (Part V)