Turning NY Restaurants
into NY Wine Spots

During the late summer of 2013, radio host Michael Warren Thomas put a challenge out to Rochester restaurants to start offering more local wines. 35% of their wine list to be exact. The challenge was born out of the frustration of going to local restaurants in the largest wine region in New York, yet not being able to get any of these wonderful, cool climate wines that are by nature very food friendly.

The challenge came with a helping hand though. Restaurants were educated about local wines, taken out on wine tours into the Finger Lakes, received assistance in making winery contacts, getting pricing and distribution, and if they made the Top Ten list, even received promotion to encourage local wine lovers and locavores to get out and support them.

The restaurants took to the challenge with a fervor. They began adding Finger Lakes wines to their wine lists, offering Finger Lakes flights to their customers, and developing pairings and dishes to compliment these wonderful wines.

Now that the program has rolled out so successfully in Rochester, we are asking other new metropolitan areas to take the challenge.


Below are the top metropolitan areas as they correspond to New York’s Wine Regions.

Click on your favorite NY metropolitan area to see how their restaurants rank!










Are you a restaurant in one of the above metropolitan areas, but haven’t been ranked yet? Fill out this form to be added!