Often there are ties with locations that we never thought connected us to a place. I have dreamed of visiting the Finger Lakes for quite some time. Before travel writing, I wrote about pets. I received emails about the Grapehounds Wine Tour, dog adoption, and wine tasting event in the Finger Lakes. When I branched out to include wine writing, I learned about many of our wine regions and sampled various wines. My studies included the Finger Lakes.
Soon after, I met Morgen McLaughlin, currently executive director of the Willamette Valley Wine Association, but she at one time was the executive director of the Finger Lakes Wine Country. My connection with the Finger Lakes was brought to yet another test when I rescued a dog I bred, and part of his journey back to me was a foster stop in the Finger Lakes.
In 2018, while attending the International Media Marketplace I met the representative of the Finger Lakes, but that was not my year to visit the region. It was a webinar in the fall of 2020 that solidified my yearning to visit. The beauty of upstate New York enthralled me. It came to light in the Finger Lakes and Corning. From the small-town quaintness to the natural splendor of its lakes, streams, and waterfalls. Through its obsession with wine, glass, and aviation, one finds a lot to explore through art and culture.
Corning Museum Of Glass
The Corning Museum of Glass is considered one of the most significant spaces dedicated to the art, history, and science of glass. Founded in 1951, the museum features the history of glassmaking and exhibits of contemporary art and design. Delving into the medium of glassmaking and the exquisite art designs coming from this material would be well worth the trip.
Finger Lakes Wine
As an oenophile, the Finger Lakes history of making wine and its wine intrigues me. It all began in 1829 when Reverend William Bostwick planted Vitis labrusca grapes in his Hammondsport rectory garden. The first bonded winery, Hammondsport’s Pleasant Valley Wine Company, began in 1862. Not only was Pleasant Wine Company first bonded winery in New York but also the United States.
The area has four wine trails; Cayuga Lake Wine Trail, Keuka Lake Wine Trail, Seneca Lake Wine Trail, and the Canandaigua Wine Trail. Its first AVA, Cayuga Lake, was established in 1988.
One of the more influential people in the Finger Lakes region was Dr. Konstantin Frank. His work at Cornell University’s Geneva Experiment station in 1951 set the standard for grape growing in the area. He discovered that Vitis vinifera varieties could grow in the cold Finger Lakes climate by grafting onto native rootstock. His influence inspires many of the current wineries today
During a recent webinar, I was introduced to three wineries and their wine, which whetted my appetite to come and visit and taste the wine from more wineries in the area. All three are located in the Hammondsport.
This is an excerpt from an article I wrote for Travel World International.
Featured image courtesy of Luke Petrinec.