Saturday, December 29, 2007

Whitecliff releases Champagne for New Years

Just in time for New Years Eve, Whitecliff Vineyards & Winery has just released it's first bottling of Champagne. This Champagne was made with 100% Chardonnay grapes. A must have to ring in the 2008.

Their tasting room is open today until 5p, Sunday 12p - 5p, Monday - New Years Eve 12p - 4p

Monday, December 24, 2007

Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays from the Shawangunk Wine Trail

Adair Vineyards
Applewood Winery
Baldwin Vineyards
Benmarl Winery @ Slate Hill Vineyards
Brotherhood America's Oldest Winery
Glorie Farm Winery
Rivendell Winery
Stoutridge Vineyard
Warwick Valley Winery & Distillery
Whitecliff Vineyards & Winery

Friday, December 07, 2007

Wreath & Fineries at the Wineries

Last weekend I attended the Wreath & Fineries. What a blast! I will post my pictures later including the completed wreath.

I started out the day at Warwick Valley Winery indulging in homemade pizza which was very good! Their Chardonnay was excellent, just like I like my Chardonnay..buttery on the finish. While I was at Applewood I met a couple from NJ who followed me to the rest of the wineries along with another couple from Connecticut. We had a great time tasting and sharing experiences.

At Brotherhood I really enjoyed their holiday wine. It was served warm with spices of cinnamon and cloves. I lost my new best friends at Baldwin as I ran into my UPS driver. Well..he hasn't had my route for years, but our kids go to school together. When I found my friends they had gone through their tasting, so we left and went on our way to Whitecliff.
After Whitecliff the couple from Connecticut decided they had enough and headed home. The couple from NJ stayed with it and finished the wine trail , completed their wreath, and purchased some wonderful wine.

There are still tickets available for Sunday December 16th if you would like to attend the event.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Rivendell's 2002 Merlot

Congratulations to Rivendell Winery as their 2002 Merlot was mentioned in a recent New York Times article as a great match with your Thanksgiving Turkey. The story was about 4 people who get together for a pre Thanksgiving meal. Each one of them brings two different wines costing no more than $25 to enjoy with the feast.

The article said "Even more surprising was Florence’s wine, a 2002 Rivendell merlot from the North Fork of Long Island, which tasted of plums and flowers. It reminded me that Long Island merlots are very different from California’s, often leaner and snappier, and well worth investigating."

To read the entire aticle go to

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Hudson Valley Cab Franc Harvest

This weekend as the harvest season starts to wind down some vineyards were picking Cab Franc. The Cab Franc grapes at Whitecliff Vineyards are the best in New Yorks State according to Cornell Cooperative Extension. They sample grapes from various vineyards across New York and compare the ph level, acid & sugar levels to collect data on the different growing regions. Within the next two years there should be some fantastic Cab Franc being released at their tasting room.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Harvest at Whitecliff

I have posted pictures of the harvest at Whitecliff Vineyards your viewing enjoyment.

Click here to view them.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Aroma - What they describe in your wine

Use the this as a guide when you're tasting wine for fun, and I think you'll be surprised to see how well this list of descriptive terms will help you recognize those elusive characteristics.

FRUITY: Citrus - grapefruit, lemon; berry - blackberry, raspberry, strawberry, black currant (cassis); tree fruit - cherry, apricot, peach, apple; tropical fruit - pineapple, melon, banana; dried fruit - strawberry jam, raisins, prune, fig.

VEGETATIVE: fresh - stemmy, cut green grass, bell pepper, eucalyptus, mint; canned-cooked - green beans, asparagus, green olive, black olive, artichoke; dried - haw-straw, tea, tobacco.

NUTTY: walnut, hazelnut, almond.

CARAMELIZED: honey, butterscotch, butter, soy sauce, chocolate, molasses.

WOODY: vanilla, cedar, oak, smoky, burnt toast, charred, coffee.

EARTHY: dusty, mushroom, musty (mildew), moldy cork.

CHEMICAL: petroleum - tar, plastic, kerosene, diesel; sulfur - rubbery, garlic, skunk, cabbage, burnt match, wet wool, wet dog; papery - wet cardboard; pungent - acetic acid (vinegar); other - soapy, fishy.

PUNGENT: hot - alcohol; cool - menthol.

MICROBIOLOGICAL: yeast, sauerkraut, sweaty, horsey, "mousey."

FLORAL: orange blossom, rose, violet, geranium. SPICY: cloves, black pepper, licorice, anise.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Gewürztraminer harvest

These are pictures of Gewürztraminer grapes that were harvested this weekend on the
Shawangunk Wine Trail.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The Best of the Hudson Valley

Congratulations goes out to the Shawangunk Wine Trail as it won the "Best of the Hudson Valley" in the category of "International Wine Event" for Around the World in 80 Miles. This event is held every June, Father's Day Weekend. Each of the 10 wineries on the trail adopt a country and serve food from that country paired with their wines. Each customer receives a passport and as they travel to each winery, they have the opportunity to taste food from the adopted country, paired with the wines and their passport stamped. At the end of the day, they can turn their passport in for a chance to win a case of wine.

Congratulations goes out to Benmarl Winery who received "Best of the Hudson Valley" in the category of "Best place to sample Sangria."

Congratulations goes out to Whitecliff Vineyards . Their Awosting White won the Best Cocktail Wine.

Congratulations goes out to Warwick Valley Winery & Distillery who won the Best Distilled Fruit Beverages.

Congratulations to the Wine Trail and it's members!!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007


I spoke to Whitecliff Vineyards & Winery today and they told me they have been harvesting Seyval all week. It looks like a banner crop. Much to their surprise, it looks like they will be harvesting Chardonnay next week.

This is a great time to visit all the wineries and experience the "Crush." It's quite an experience.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Hudson Valley Harvest

Well it's harvest time in the Hudson Valley. Usually harvest starts the second or third week in September. Not this year...this year we are looking at an early start to harvest! Some vineyards will start harvesting Seyval this week...two weeks early.

As you travel about the next few weeks you will be able to see harvest at its best at area vineyards. As the grapes get delivered to the will be able to witness Hudson Valley wine making up close and personal.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Hudson Heritage White

As you go wine tasting in the Hudson Valley you will run across a white wine called "Hudson Heritage White." This wine is available at many of the wineries. Although the same name, each winery will craft their own version of "Hudson Heritage White."

What does that mean...It is common practice in France for regions to have a clearly defined wine styles, with strict parameters established and enforced for grapes and blends that qualify. The growers in the Hudson Valley are using that platform to build their own identity and understanding for Hudson Valley Wines.

The Hudson Valley Grape Growers Association has selected Seyval Blanc as the primary grape for wines that will qualify for the new designation, with Vignoles, Vidal or Cayuga White allowed for blending. In time consumers will see wines labeled "Hudson Heritage White" and the wine will be a light and easy-drinking white wine.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Whitcliff Vineyard's Gourmet Burger Celebration

This event is a must! Have you eaten local grass fed beef, paired with red wine? You should attend this event. I attend last year and was amazed at the difference a grass fed burger tastes.
Paired with Whitecliff's red wines...yum!! I hope they have their Malbec bottled for this event. Last year it paired great with the burgers!

At this event, you will enjoy the pleasures of eating local in a Hudson Valley summer at Whitecliff Vineyard’s Red Wine & Grass-Fed Beef Gourmet Burger Celebration. It all takes place on Saturday and Sunday, August 25th and 26th, from 12 to 4 p.m. Saturday, and 12-3 Sunday. The Celebration will give you a true taste of Hudson Valley agriculture, as it offers up the delicious synergy of wine, burgers from local grass-fed beef, sweet corn, and ice cream.

For more information and tickets you can call the winery at 845-255-4613. You can visit their website as well at

Sunday, August 12, 2007

New York Wine & Food Classic

Congratulations Rivendell Winery...their 2006 Soho Cellars Johannisberg Riesling won Best Semi-Dry Riesling Wine at the 2007 New York Wine & Food Classic that was held last week at Copia in Napa, CA.

The awards were based on blind tastings by 24 expert judges—10 from California, 6 from New York, 6 from other states, and 2 from other countries. Judges included prominent wine writers, restaurateurs, retailers, and wine educators. Four-judge panels determined the initial awards, with top-scoring wines evaluated by all 24 judges for Best of Category and Governor’s Cup awards.

For more information on the compeition visit

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Bounty of the Hudson

The Bounty of the Hudson Food & Wine Festival is this weekend July 28 & 29th at Brotherhood, America's Oldest Winery in Washingtonville NY. Festival hours are from 12noon to 5pm each day, rain or shine. This festival is host to all Hudson Valley Wineries, not just those located on the Shawangunk Wine Trail. There will be food as well as farm fresh produce from local farms.
Ticket prices are $25 in advance and $33 at the door.
For more information call 845-255-2494 or visit Shawangunk Wine Trail
See you there!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Jumpin Jazz @ Glorie

Here it is...the new label from Glorie Farm Winery. Glorie held a contest for the label of their new Jumpin Jazz wine. A beautiful label as well as a fine tasting wine. Jumpin Jazz is a blend of Seyval, Cayuga White an Vidal. It's a semi sweet wine with hints of citrus, melon and tropical fruit. It's quite lovely and is a nice summer wine!
I attended the festivities yesterday at Glorie Farm Winery. The winning artist was Brandi Budziak from Lexington, New York. There currently is a silent auction going on for the original artwork. Auction ends at 5pm on September 1st, 2007. All proceeds from the auction will be donated to the Animal Rescue Foundation in Beacon, New York.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Trail Happenings

Boy, I've been lacking on my posts. I do apologize.

There has been a lot going on, on the trail this summer. I hope you have had time to come and visit.

Next weekend Glorie Farm is unveiling their Jumpin Jazz Label. Big party at their winery. I plan on being present for this unveiling. Should be very exciting!

The Bounty of the Hudson is coming up at Brotherhood, America's Oldest Winery, on July 28 & 29th. I'll be posting more info on that in the next few weeks.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Tasting @ Adair Vineyards

I had the chance during the pasta event to taste at Adair Vineyards. They were serving an Almond Torte that was very good and went right to my hips.

The first wine I tasted was the 2005 Vidal. This was a dry white wine made from 100% Vidal Blanc Grapes. Vidal is a grape that grows very well in the Hudson Valley. This was aged in Hungarian Oak barrels. With that it give the wine a hint of carmel flavor. This wine was crisp with citrus fruit flavors. It was very good. Something you would pair with seafood.

Next was the Blackberry Kir. This was light fruity and refreshing. It had a little residual sugar... 2 3/4 to be exact. It was made with 30% Seyval, 40% Vidal, 30% Blackberry wine, which was made from blackberries from the Marlboro/Milton area.

Then it was on to Rosalias...a dry Rose. When poured, it was dark, not your typical pink looking Rose. It is made from 25% Chambourcin, 29% Dechaunac, 25% Frontenac & 25% Chancellor. It was very nice with overtones of cherry and strawberry.

The last wine I tasted was their 2006 Peche. This is a sweet dessert wine made from 100% local New Paltz white peaches. This makes a nice after dinner drink, or drizzled over a fruit salad.

If you had the opportunity to tast any of these wines, I would love to hear how you enjoyed them.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Warwick Vally Winery & Distillery

It was a beautiful day last Saturday for the Pasta Primo Vino event, a far cry from last years rain. Our first stop was Warwick Valley Winery & Distillery. They have done some renovations to the winery and bakery area since last year. The big doors leading out to the patio were open giving the outdoor café feel.

We tasted tasted 5 wines during our visit here. The first was a Merlot, which was also used in the pasta dish. This Merlot was crafted from 100% Merlot grapes which were picked at peak ripeness. It was then aged in French Oak for 24 months. We felt it was a light bodied wine with hints of cherry and cassis.

We then tasted the Riesling. This Riesling had a wonderful floral nose with hints of apple and pear. It was a Semi-sweet wine with a light mineral finish. These types of wines go great with spicy food. I like them with Thai food.

Next up was the Black Dirt Blush. This was grape jelly in a glass. If you grew up with Welches or Smuckers grape jelly, this smell of this wine will bring you back to your childhood. These grapes were made from the Vincent and Delaware grapes.

Then it was onto the Hard Cider…Doc’s Hard Cider… I’ve had the Apple before, which is very good, so I decided to try something different. I tried the Black Currant Cider and Paul tried the Pear Cider. The Pear Cider was very dry. It is made from Bartlett and Bosc pears. The Black Currant Cider is made from pressed NYS apples and fermented with Champagne yeast and local black currants. Both ciders are very good and will quench your thirst on a hot summers day.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Pasta Primo-Vino

I hope all who attended the event had a wonderful time. I did! We tasted some wonderful new releases as well as some wonderful pasta dishes. (picture of Rivendell's Orzo Pasta Salad.) My favorite dish was Applewood's Baked Ziti with Sausage and Ricotta. I wonder if it will taste as good when I try to make it:)

I would love to hear your comments on the event.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Pasta Pasta Pasta

I have heard from some of the wineries and the pasta dishes sound wonderful. Here is some of what you can expect:

Almond Torte Pasta, Baked Ziti with Ricotta and Sausage, Shrimp, Bean and Pasta Salad, Pasta e Piselli (Oricchiette), Stuffed Shells, Orzo Pasta Salad, Asian Pasta, Pasta with Bolognese Sauce.

Now guess who is serving which dish.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Pasta Primo-Vino

The season is starting...the annual Pasta Primo-Vino is this coming up weekend April 21 & 22 on the trail. Many wineries will be featuring new releases.

I will be around on the trail, taking pictures. I will be posting on the different wines that I will have the opportunity to taste.

We encourage you to contribute to our blog and post your comments.
If you need tickets to the event, you can purchase them by clicking here.