Keuka Lake Wine Tasting 2021: Top 5 Best Wineries to Visit

The best Keuka Lake wineries are located on the shores of this beautiful lake. These vineyards produce award-winning wines and offer tasting sessions to guests who want to discover the best bottles in the region.

What makes these Keuka Lake wineries different from others? They use grapes grown at the highest elevations for their high-quality wines, using sustainable practices with grape growing that preserves soil nutrients.

The region also offers a variety of other activities such as hiking in summer, exploring museums, and much more.

In our Keuka Lake full guide, we will go through the best wineries but also the most pleasant time to visit and the activities.

What Are The Best Months To Visit The Finger Lakes?

The Finger Lakes region in upstate New York is a great place to visit any time of year and is a beautiful getaway for both nature and wine lovers.

That being said, according to the U.S. Travel News, if you’re looking for the best experience, come between May and September. There will be plenty of opportunities to enjoy outdoor pursuits like hiking, kayaking, and, of course, wine tasting.

The rates at local accommodations are higher from June to August when crowds of people come out for an adventure weekend away. Also, be prepared to experience longer lines so plan your trip accordingly.

How Many Wineries Are On Keuka Lake?

The Finger Lakes region is home to the oldest and most well-known wineries in the United States. One of these was Taylor Wine Company, which began at Keuka Lake and became the sixth-largest wine producer in the country.

Today Keuka Lake is home to 20 small but mighty and popular wineries on its both East and West shores.

Why Are The Finger Lakes Good For Wine?

The Finger Lakes region of New York State is renowned for its wine, but not all lakes are created equal. The lower-elevation Seneca and Cayuga Lakes have chalky soil well suited to the vinifera grapes.

In contrast, Keuka Lake’s higher altitude means that it has acidic soils more like those found at home vineyards abroad such as France’s regions.

The famous grape variety Chardonnay can be traced back to these high elevation areas around Canandaigua Lake where acidity levels create conditions favorable for this particular white varietal.

Top Keuka Lake Wineries

The Keuka Lake wine region has some of the most beautiful scenery in the country. It’s a great place to spend an afternoon with friends and family, tasting delicious wines and enjoying your surroundings.

Here below, we will highlight 5 wineries that are not only located on the shores of Keuka Lake but also offer some fantastic wines to taste.

McGregor Vineyard – Authenticity And A Large Variety Of Wines

McGregor Vineyard 1
Credit: @mcgregorvineyard
McGregor Vineyard 2
Credit: @mcgregorvineyard
McGregor Vineyard 3
Credit: @mcgregorvineyard

On a gorgeous summer day, there’s nothing like a nice glass of wine. For those who want to experience an upstate New York vineyard but don’t know where to start, McGregor Vineyard is a great place to start.

The winery is tucked away in a beautiful, serene setting. One mile above the eastern shore of Keuka Lake, you will get to enjoy an educational experience that combines scenic beauty with a rich tradition.

Their most sophisticated and popular wines are Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, Riesling, and the Dry Gewürztraminer. Also, the winery has a signature blend called “Black Russian Red” which is essentially a mix of Saperavi & Sereksiya Charni.

Simply put, you can’t leave McGregor Vineyard without tasting those bottles.

Their wine tasting sessions take place every day from 11 AM to 5 PM and a maximum of 9 people are accepted per booking. The price per person is $10 for 5 wines and we are confident you will not regret it for a second.

Other than that, they organize the McGregor Wine Club Picnic once a year for $50 per person and that lasts from 11.30 AM to 6 PM.

This includes appetizers, dinner, and, of course, laughter and wine tasting.

All in all, it is one of the best Keuka Lake wineries that you must visit when in the region.

Bully Hill Vineyards – Affordable Wine And Sublime Ambience

Bully Hill Vineyards 1
Credit: @bullyhillvineyards
Bully Hill Vineyards 2
Credit: @bullyhillvineyards
Bully Hill Vineyards 3
Credit: @bullyhillvineyards

Bully Hill Vineyards is a beautiful vineyard in Keuka Lake. The view of the vineyard from the top of the hill is breathtaking and it’s not hard to see why this place has become such an amazing tourist attraction.

The tasting room is open daily from 11 AM to 4 PM. Tastings are set at $12 per person and include 5 of their most perfect wines as well as a free souvenir wine glass.

Their absolute best wines are Bass Riesling, Chardonnay Elise, Cabernet Franc, and Banty Red. Apart from being exceptional, they are also relatively cheap and a bottle will cost you anything from $9.99.

It’s not just wine that they make here, but also have a restaurant to enjoy their delicious dishes at the restaurant.

There’s plenty of space for you to enjoy your time while sampling delicious varieties like Belgian Waffles, French Toast, or Eggs Benedict.

Last but not least, there is a Wine Museum onsite as well as an art gallery and those are certainly great additions to an afternoon tasting wine.

Domaine LeSeurre Winery – The French Touch In Keuka Lake

Domaine LeSeurre Winery 1
Credit: @domaineleseurre
Domaine LeSeurre Winery 2
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Domaine LeSeurre Winery 3
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  • Address: 13920 NY-54, Hammondsport, NY 14840, United States
  • Contact: (607)-292-3920
  • Website: https://dlwinery.com/

If you’re visiting the Keuka Lake area, don’t miss Domaine LeSeurre Winery.

You’ll find the winery on the east side of Keuka Lake and they specialize in dry wines with a touch of French style.

It’s a must-visit for dry wine lovers and it is owned by a French couple who put in lots of effort making their wines to ensure they are perfect every time.

Out of all bottles, their Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc, and Riesling are some of the ones that you can’t leave without trying. In the Domaine LeSeurre tasting room, visitors can taste five wines for $5.

Apart from the unique wine tasting activities, they also host night sessions combining one glass of their Rosé Cabernet Franc with some delicious French delicacies while admiring the sun setting. This is the most popular activity here and it will set you back $30 per person.

Last but not least, it is important to note that outside food or drinks aren’t allowed. But no need to worry, they have French snacks, crackers, and more to offer the most unique experience.

Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery – Magical Views And Top 100 Wineries

Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery 1
Credit: @drfrankwine
Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery 2
Credit: @drfrankwine
Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery 3
Credit: @drfrankwine

Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery has been producing premium wine from the Keuka Lake region for a number of years and is one of the oldest wineries in New York State.

The Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery offers a variety of wines (over 40 bottles in total) that are perfect for any occasion, but they specialize in Riesling and Chardonnay.

The tasting experience at the winery is an intimate and personalized opportunity to taste great bottles ranging from sparkling to still, traditional grape varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Pinot Blanc.

For $10 per person, and no matter what type of wine you’re into, this extensive selection of global grapes will suit any palate. Note that the wine tasting session will be free if you purchase 4 bottles per person.

In addition, the winery in Keuka Lake also offers a food and wine pairing experience for $50 per person. This consists of small but delicious food paid with wine coming from their best bottles educating you on the background at the same time.

To conclude, Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery is simply one of the best wineries in Keuka Lake.

Barrington Cellars – Best Location And Magical Scenery

Barrington Cellars 1
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Barrington Cellars 2
Credit: @theuncorkedcottage
Barrington Cellars 3
Credit: @pack_0f_wolves

The owners of Barrington Cellars in Keuka Lake started their vineyard in 1971, focusing on the native Labrusca grape that is known for its fantastic flavor.

They have perfected the winemaking technique to bring you delicious wines made with certified organic grapes from their own vines.

Their bottles are some of the best that you can find around Keuka Lake. From their Sweet Riesling to the Cabernet Franc Dry Rose to Buzzard’s Bubbly, this is the right place for both amateurs and wine experts.

The wine tasting sessions will only cost you $5 per person and bottles cost as low as $9.99.

Where Should I Stay For Finger Lakes Wineries?

The Finger Lakes region is a summer getaway favorite for all travelers. The bigger-than-life region features an endless number of natural and manmade wonders, making it tough to choose where you’ll stay in the Finger Lakes area.

Whether your idea of relaxing time includes exploring historic villages or taking part in water sports, we’ve got recommendations on places to sleep here below.

Corning

Corning is a charming town nestled in the Finger Lakes region. You won’t be able to resist exploring this idyllic little town, with its abundance of activities and attractions.

Not only will you have your fill here but it’s just 30 minutes from Hammondsport where you can explore Keuka Wine Trail activity options.

Ithaca

Ithaca is a wonderful Finger Lakes destination with over 150 waterfalls, Cornell University, and its great location on Cayuga Lake. It is located around 45 miles from Keuka Lake but it’s a great base to explore the region and its wineries for a few days.

Elmira

Elmira is one of the best destinations to stay in the Finger Lakes area. It is located 30 minutes drive away to Watkins Glen, 40 minutes to Ithaca, and 20 minutes drive to Corning.

Is Keuka Lake Nice? Best Activities Around Keuka Lake

Apart from the wine trail in Keuka Lake, there are great activities to enjoy after a wine tasting session. Whether you want to relax indoors, grasp some knowledge about the area, or go hiking, you’ll have a unique experience.

Go Hiking Near Keuka Lake

For a great outdoor experience, head to the Keuka Lake Outlet Trail. This route is one of America’s oldest trails and is meticulously maintained.

In total, it’s about seven miles long with an easy surface for bicycling or horseback riding.

Visit The Museums Around The Finger Lakes Wineries

There are some museums around Keuka Lake that really deserve to be visited. From Glenn H. Curtiss Museum in Hammondsport who portraits everything about the “Fastest man on Earth” and aviation to the Finger Lakes Boating Museum to the Aquarium.

Spend Some Time Fishing After Tasting Wine

Keuka Lake is a haven for fishing enthusiasts. One of the most famous activities around Keuka Lake in winter is fishing and you shouldn’t miss your chance before or after a wine tasting.

Conclusion

One of the best ways to get a sense of how life is like in Keuka Lake, NY, is by visiting one of the wineries.

Wine tastings are available at many of these establishments and some even offer tours where you can learn about wine-making techniques as well as other aspects related to history.

To conclude, you simply cannot travel to Keuka Lake without tasting their delicious wine and discovering the vineyards all around.

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