Category Archives: Distilleries

Spirit production

Harvest in the Finger Lakes 2015

Fall in the FLX
Fall in the FLX

I’ve been off the grid! Gentle readers, sometimes business takes it all out of you for a bit, and quite frankly being business owners was rough for a patch. I’m happy to report things are currently fantastic at our tattoo shop, and I’ve been able to once again turn my attentions towards the fields and this year’s harvest bounty.

It’s finally October first, which means lots of the grapes have already been harvested and pressed around the Finger Lakes, and one of the busiest times of year is here! Tasting rooms will be extremely lively on beautiful fall weekends, so if you’re visiting, be civil and expect crowds of other tasters. The good news is, the views are heading towards incredible – enjoy, and don’t be in a rush. The Finger Lakes are all about taking a breath and enjoying some of the most beautiful scenery in the world. Pick some apples, peep the fall leaves, hike a waterfall, taste some locally made wines, ciders, beers, spirits…chocolates….cheese…

Beauties in the sunlight
Beauties in the sunlight

Harvest 2015 is in full swing, with lots of grape picking, pressing, and cellar happenings currently in the works, area wide. My Instagram feed is currently full of grapes being pressed, yeasts going in and fermentation starting, and lots of rain gear the last twenty four hours! It’s been dry and warm the last two weeks, so many growers got their grapes in before rains started in earnest. Our local weather called for over three inches of rain into today, with more over the weekend. Hopefully it dries out so that everyone gets their remaining crops in!

It’s also fun to see the apple farmers harvesting for their upcoming vintages of hard ciders. The movement is growing nationwide,  and the Finger Lakes area is at the center of high quality, heirloom farmed fruits, classically made, dry to off-dry, sometimes fermented in bottle, hard apple and pear ciders. This coming weekend (October 3rd and 4th) is the Apple Festival in Ithaca, with FLX Cider Week also kicking off. I’ll be attending some local happenings on that front, so stay tuned! October is going to be fun, and fall is the best time of year to be in this area, in my humble BoozyWife opinion…that’s why we tend to stay local until the snow flies again….

The Winery in SoHa NYC knows where the Finger Lakes are!


Recently, hubby and I took a quick weekend jaunt to the big city to take care of family obligations. It was HOT. New York City, garbage smell hot. Upper nineties, where the little squiggle lines come of of the pavement and your mandatory iced coffee is losing ice rapidly, condensation water dripping to your elbow. Many former New Yorkers are reading this, and starting to feel that homesick twinge. We all must be insane to love the place!

Headed to visit friends, we made our way to the newly revitalized area now referred to as SoHa (South Harlem, or as husband kept repeatedly, and loudly, announcing over his friend, FORMERLY SPANISH HARLEM! Lifetime New Yorkers also do not enjoy change of neighborhood names). The area is enjoying quite a renaissance at the moment, and there has been so much development! Coffee shops, sushi restaurants with outdoor cafe tables, and boutiques line the sidewalk. We felt quite melty walking down 116th St…and then, I saw it, through the heat squiggles….The Winery. (Follow the link here: The Winery : We sell the wines that we like to drink..)

The Winery is a small, boutique wine store, with a focus on artisanal producers and vineyards. Their staff is very knowledgable about the wines and spirits they carry, and my questions were met with a very friendly and informed attitude. We were welcomed, asked if we needed any direction, and it was brought to my attention that there would be a free tasting later that evening (every Friday, from 6-8). The interior was simple, elegant, and air conditioned. Bottles were easily displayed, and my first hunt was for Finger Lakes wines on shelves. Riesling, Riesling, Riesling…?!? Dr. Frank was represented….by the 2010 Rkatsiteli? WOW! Lakewood Vineyards 2012 Vignoles? Reeeaaaally!! Ravines 2012 Pinot Rose, excitably AVAILABLE!! Owner Nobu Otsu is a certified member of the American Sommelier Society, as well as belongs to the WSET. (Learn more about his journey here: Q&A with Nobu Otsu, Owner of The Winery | MORNINGSIDER.) His knowledge has created an oasis in Harlem, and the shop is a beautiful representation of hand crafted, lower to moderately priced, every day drinking wines. Beautiful shop, friendly staff, and a fantastic selection of local wines. Finger Lakes producers, take note…this Harlem wine shop should carry your best products! Check out the shop when in the area, or peruse their extensive website…visit SoHa!