New York has five major federally recognized Wine Regions — and seven wine areas throughout the state.
Click on a wine region to get information on that particular region along with a list of participating wineries in that region.
Central New York
& Upper Hudson Valley
New York City
NEW YORK’S WINE REGIONS
An American Viticultural Area (AVA) is a designated wine grape-growing region in the United States distinguishable by geographic features, with boundaries defined by the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, United States Department of the Treasury. New York has five major AVAs, some with smaller AVAs in them — such as the Finger Lakes and Long Island Regions. Beyond the official AVAs, there are seven recognized wine areas throughout the state with a concentration of vineyards and wineries, but not quite large enough to reach AVA status. All together, the New York grape, grape juice and wine industry generates more than $4.8 billion in economic benefits annually for New York State. 1,631 family vineyards… 353 wineries… 175,000,000 bottles of wine… $408 million in state and local taxes!
(source: Finger Lakes Wine Alliance)
THE PRINCIPLE OF TERROIR
This is a widely practiced principle in New York which basically states “what grows together, goes together.” This means produce and goods that share the same soil, climate and growing conditions share many of the same flavor profiles, so they naturally pair together. So that wine that was produced from grapes that grew down the road from that grain that fed that cow who made that cheese and that pig who went on to become a pork roast which grew down the road from those apples that went into the apple sauce all have something in common — the same terroir.
Cool climate wines, like all of New York’s wines, pair better with food than their warm climate counterparts. Why? Wines that are made in cool climate regions tend to have more tartness, or in wine speak, acidity. Because the temps are lower and the season shorter, the grapes don’t reach the ripeness of the same grapes being grown in hot climates. So sugar levels are lower, which means lower alcohol and more crispness. On their own, cool climate wines are more refreshing. With food, the inherent acidity in these wines acts as a flavor booster. Rather than overwhelming the food’s flavor, the wine acts to enhance and intensify the food. Basically, a cool climate wine is a great condiment.
Locavore is the hot trend. And restaurants are listening. Chefs are getting their produce, meats and dairy from near-by farms and farm markets to keep their menus local. Yet somehow, wines get overlooked. However, just like the sweet corn or local cheese, wine is a local crop too and adds to the local feel of any menu. According to a study done by the Ontario Canada Liquor Control Board on the multiplier effect on what happens when money is spent locally, for every $10 spent on a local wine $10.05 is returned to the local community. For every $10 spent on a wine from the West Coast or another country only .67 cents is returned. The purchase of local wines impacts not only local restaurants but also local agriculture and tourism.