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Susquehanna Life

Finger Lakes Winery Hopping

Jun 27, 2015 04:25PM ● By Troy Metzger
Located 3.5 hours from Central Pennsylvania, lies a region of rolling hills, rushing waterfalls, and a bounty of vineyards. Our travel group decided to car pool and spend a weekend in this beautiful region.

Finger Lakes is a great weekend getaway and perfect for winery hopping. From the Central Pennsylvania region, it's a scenic 3 1/2 hour drive that includes an optional stop at the Little League World Series Museum and in my opinion a mandatory stop at Wegman's in Williamsport, PA. It makes the perfect pit stop and stretch our legs and grab a bite to eat.

We found a great little place that perfectly accommodated our group of 12 with amazing waterfront scenery and boathouse although it was still just a little too cold in April for kayaking or swimming.

We spent our first full day there touring wineries along Cayuga Lake and had a wonderful picnic at Ithaca Falls with a really beautiful waterfall backdrop. Since we were close by, we also checked out the spectacular Buttermilk Falls. I was pleasantly surprised how clean the water of Cayuga Lake was.

All the wineries were really nice. Lucas Winery stood out as one of the most friendly and they had great sweet wines for those of us who like the sweet stuff. For dry reds, most agreed that you really can't beat Hosmer. Hosmer is known for their dry reds; claiming they have the best in the Finger Lakes --and their multiple awards prove so. Aside from the basic wine tasting, the winemaker offered a tasting of three different vintages of the same wine so that you can taste the difference. Hosmer also had a chef proving samples of food the day we were there. They had vegan chili and hot sauces, and a delicious balsamic reduction made from grapeseed oil perfect for dipping toasted bread in. Their staff was also extremely friendly as well.

On the second day we spent more time along the Seneca Lake wineries stopping at Hazlitt (makers of Red Cat wine which is sold in Pennsylvania wine stores), 3 Brothers and Chateau Lafayette Reneau. Hazlitt caters to more of the masses and offers a nice gift shop. 3 Brothers is a really unique place that is a must see stop along the Seneca Lake side. They have a beautiful estate that also houses War Horse Brewing Company. They also offer the best wine slushies I've found in the Finger Lakes thus far. The best view of all the wineries was from the deck of Chateau Lafayette Reneau overlooking their vineyard and the beautiful Seneca Lake.

There are many other wineries that we were not able to cover although we really wanted to but no matter what you decide to do it is hard to go wrong with a weekend getaway to the Finger Lakes.

For those who love wine, take the scenic route to the Finger Lakes.

Main image photo credit: Debra Zucco

Article by Troy Metzger of

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