Winemaker notes

Spring 2019


Now that winter is slowly losing its grip, we all look forward to longer days and warmer breezes while working in the vineyard. We have lots of pruning to do still, and then we will start our second pass through the vineyard to tie down canes to fruit wires. Winter work is long and tedious, but the rewards are great when looking back at a block of tidy and well-groomed vines.

As we all know, this 2018 growing season was a tough one in the Finger Lakes. A very humid hot first half of summer created lots of disease pressure on the vines, and then we all waited for a warm, dry September and October to push the vines to ripeness. Instead we got endless cool wet days.

We picked our Riesling by hand and yields were about a third of normal years. With a sugar reading of 19% Colleen managed to make a very pleasant, clean dry Riesling. Our Chardonnay is very pleasing as well and we look forward to a Spring release in both Reserve and Stainless styles.

Despite the weather, our 2018 red varietals achieved decent ripening with sugar percentages in the low 20’s. So far the Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon display pleasant fruit flavors with body and finish on the lighter side. They are now going into their barrels for their next year of sleep-time. Currently we are finishing the blending and preparation of our 2017 red wines for bottling this Spring. They are maturing nicely and we are excited about their upcoming release. Our first reserve blend will be coming in the Fall.

Tasting Room Updates:

Starting June 1st, we will have both new tasting selections and new prices on wines. Our 2016 Cabernet Franc sold so well over the fall and winter months that we are going to pull the remaining stock to cellar. We will be pulling all 2016 Cabernet Franc from the tasting room June 1st and replacing it with our 2017 Merlot. Wine club members were able to access an early release of the Merlot and feedback has been wonderful! All wine updates and price changes will be updated on our website and on our tasting menus June 1st. 

We will also continue to have two rotating beers on tap from local farm breweries. On tap now are two beers from Liquid State Brewing Company located in Ithaca, NY. 

We hope to have new wine releases later this summer and through the fall so keep an eye out for our email updates and on our social media pages!

Upcoming Events:

Brunch with Fittnell Farms: 
Our first event of the year will be a Brunch on Saturday June 8th, 2019 starting at 11amFittnell Farms  will be catering the event and will stay until the food is sold out. Grab your friends and family and enjoy a morning at the winery!  More information can be found on our Facebook page or on our event calendar on our website. 

Farmers Market: 
We are excited to be part of the Ithaca "Night Market" at Steam Boat Landing Thursday nights from 5-8 starting Thursday June 27th. 

Mini-Concert Series:
Our Wednesday Night Concert Series starts up in just a few weeks! Starting Wednesday June 26th through the end of August, the winery will be open on Wednesdays from 12pm-8pm with music every Wednesday night  from 6-8pm. We have a great variety of local musicians lined up for the summer and the music events will be catered. More information on our music line up and on each event can be found on our Facebook events page and on our event calendar on our website. If you have any questions about our upcoming events, please email

Next Wine Club Shipment: December 2019