People keep asking me if this is all I do for a living, as if I got paid for driving around the Finger Lakes on the rainiest week of the summer (so far). It’s hard work, driving through the back roads between Seneca and Keuka Lakes in the pouring rain, tasting (and spitting) dozens of wines throughout a long week, but SOMEONE’s got to do it, (even if they’re not being paid for it). I suppose I could just email everyone and ask them to send me their best wines to give 90 point-plus scores to, (cough-cough, suck-up wine writers)…
But that’s not what I’m about. I only review wines east of the Rockies, and I personally visit those I write of and review, from Colorado to Connecticut, and from North Carolina to New Hampshire, from Virginia to Vermont and Michigan to Minnesota. I also don’t believe in the Robert Parker-inspired 90-point wine scoring system, for many reasons. It’s been written that retailers complained that if Parker rated their wines below 85 points, they couldn’t sell them, and if he rated them above 87 points, they couldn’t buy them. This is very revealing about the dynamics of the U.S. wine trade, but I think it says more about the 100-point rating system.
But I digress. It’s time for me to share my impressions of my annual tasting trip to the Finger Lakes of New York State.
On the way north to the Finger Lakes through Pennsylvania on Rt. 15, I saw the Susquehanna River at a pretty low elevation thanks to a drought for the region. As soon as I arrived, the drought disappeared, and it rained most of the week, to the relief of farmers across the region.
I was hosted by the Geisz’s of Gulf Stream Lodging in Hammondsport, and by long-time industry friends in Newfield, south of Ithaca. Those who remember my article in the Finger Lakes Wine Gazette about the Village Inn and Tavern in Hammondsport should know that it has been sold, and I get the impression that one cannot expect the same dedication to promoting local quality wines as we had enjoyed for over a quarter century under the Geisz’s management.
I visited Cayuga, Seneca and Keuka wineries, and have made an attempt to summarize the best of my findings below, from east to west.
The Vintages Now On Offer
This visit offered quite a range of vintages, a few from 2017, up to the (very) newly-released 2022 vintage, and as is typical for the region, a wide range of quality and styles.
- 2017 was a large, dilute vintage, but the Rieslings now on offer are tasting pretty well, with added complexities of age.
- 2018 was a high-acid, dilute and unripe vintage, best forgotten.
- 2019 was a pretty good vintage all around, with classic Rieslings, showing both ripe fruit and fine acidity, and with reds that are now nicely mellow in a cool-climate way.
- 2020 was the “Great” vintage for Finger Lakes red grapes, with a long, dry fall yielding full-bodied wines of ripe fruit, smooth rich tannins, yet showing classic Finger Lakes raciness. The softer varieties like Merlot and Lemberger/Blaufränkisch will drink well from now until 2025, and are plush, juicy and gluggable. The more tannic varieties (Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Saperavi) can be enjoyed this fall, but will likely benefit from at least two years of further aging. My favorite grape from this vintage is Pinot Noir, simply the best across the region that I’ve ever tasted; clean, vibrant, fresh acidity, ripe but balanced fruit, and with moderate alcohol levels (12-13.5%) showing Burgundian character in a Finger Lakes format (without microbiological issues).
The flip side of the 2020 vintage was a mediocre year for Riesling and most of the white varieties, not surprising considering the quality of the red wines. Wines were clean, but often flat, insipid or boring, so drink up your ’20 whites, for the most part, with the exception of single vineyard and late harvest whites.
- 2021 like 2017 was a large, dilute vintage due to persistent rains, reportedly yielding a 50% higher crop volume than normal. Even the Rieslings were disappointing, managing to be both underripe and low in acidity from dilution. There are exceptions here and there, but careful buying is important. Other white varieties I tasted were mostly no better. The rosé wines are dilute and disappointing, and red wines are not expected to meet average expectations. Having warned you, I still found a few ’21 wines to recommend here, and if you’re careful, you may find others as well.
- 2022 was a difficult vintage with a happy ending, kind of a mix of the heat of 2020 (in October) with the whiplash of a warm winter, with cold snaps and bud loss, early spring and dry summer, followed by rains in August and September. While summer heat reduced berry size and crop volume, the driest October in over 20 years meant that those who waited to harvest were rewarded with ripe berries bursting with juicy fruit, and balancing acidity. So far, a handful of rosés and Rieslings were all I was able to find from 2022, but it all looks good and promising, and some producers have said that the red wines will be stellar.
CAYUGA LAKE (only these wineries tasted)
***Hosmer Ltd. Release Riesling ’17: Nose: impressive, complexities; jasmine, a hint of marmalade. Palate: impressive maturity; fruit/acid balance, big flavor which shows you can enjoy dry Rieslings at only five years old.
***Hosmer Semi-Dry Riesling ’21: Nose: some petrol. Palate: complex fruit/acid dance of pineapple, smoke and orange rind. Still young, evolving but will be rewarding in another year and way in the future.
***Hosmer Dry Riesling ’22: Nose: jasmine and lime blossom, fresh-cut red apple. Palate: vibrant, intense fruit/acid balance, red apple, peach flavors with bright acidity, could drink or lay down. Very young but very promising.
***Thirsty Owl Vineyards ’21 Dry Riesling: Staff favorite in a pretty crummy vintage for everything. Nose: beeswax and cantaloupe. Palate: BIG volume, apricot, peach and cantaloupe. Vibrant fruit/acid balance, with long finish (0.6% residual sugar).
***Thirsty Owl Vineyards ’22 Appalachian Bottom Dweller Riesling: The name comes from a shallow layer of Appalachian shale on this site, and it smells and tastes of slate! 10.9% alcohol and 0.3% residual sugar. Nose: classic slate/mineral. Palate: same, with a slatey Mosel flintiness, and a long finish. Not fruity, an austere but racy, Germanic style (I think I can hear the Tannhäuser overture…)
Other Notable White Wines
**Hosmer Pinot Gris ’21: Nose: faint. Palate: juicy but dry, almost intense grapefruit flavors with vibrant acidity (12.3% alc.). Outperforms the vintage average.
**>*Thirsty Owl Gewurztraminer ’22: Despite being bottled just 10 days before tasting, this aromatic variety really shone on the palate, despite being faint on the nose. The palate gave floral flavors leading to tangerine, but with better acidity and spice than usual, showing the potential for aromatic wines in the ’22 vintage. Thanks to acidity and an alcohol below 13%, this wine could be bottle aged.
***Thirsty Owl Pinot Noir Rosé ’22: Light color, complex nose, some strawberry aromas with a hint of pepper. Palate: BIG juicy flavors! Ripe strawberry and red cherry, juicy! A bit low in acidity, but still very hedonistic and versatile.
SENECA LAKE (Wineries visited/tasted: Hector Wine Co., Silver Thread Vineyards, Wagner Vineyards, Standing Stone Vineyards, Fox Run Vineyards).
I started my week-long tour with a social visit to Tango Oaks Vineyard in Hector, home of vineyard owner Fred Wickham who grows cherries as well as grapes. He shared a bottle of his newly-released vineyard-designated Pinot Noir made by nearby Forge Cellars.
I have not been singing the praises of the 2021 red wines in the Finger Lakes, but the microclimate in Hector tends to give the least rain and highest heat units in the region to its vineyards, and while the Tango Oaks Pinot ’21 isn’t the same as the ’20 version, I was more impressed because it exceeded my expectations.
**>* Forge Cellars Tango Oaks Pinot Noir 2021: Nose of red and black cherry, clean earth with a bit of shale. Palate: clean, fresh cherry fruit, with vibrant but balanced acidity, and earth/mineral elements with a hint of smoke. Gains depth and complexity with time in the glass. A Burgundian would be pleased with this terroir-driven expression of Pinot, the freshness of fruit and the moderate alcohol (12%). With several years of age, this wine could turn a few heads.
Silver Thread Vineyards in Caywood on east Seneca Lake is farmed “bio-intensively”, uses eco-friendly practices in the winery as well such as solar panels, and practices low-intervention winemaking, such as not chaptalizing (adding sugar to raise alcohol in cool vintages). They have a varietal tasting of four Rieslings; the glasses are placed on a piece of paper illustrating where in the Finger Lakes they are from; talk about “illustrating” terroir.
**Silver Thread Dry Riesling ’22: Nose: racy, delicate, flinty. Palate: lively, bright fresh apple fruit. Promising, needs more time.
***Silver Thread Riesling Estate ’22: Nose: Wow! Racy, subtle lemon, apple, peach/apricot notes. Palate: medium dry (1.3% R.S.) with peach, apricot and apple flavors, nervy acidity and vibrant length. Stylish, promising.
**Silver Thread Riesling Gridley Bluff Vineyard ’22: Medium dry (1.3% R.S.) Nose: tropical fruit plus minerality. Palate: juicy, rich pineapple, mango fruit, but still lively, finishes fresh.
Wagner Vineyards (also in Caywood) has introduced a reserve tasting for those who are eager to see what bottle age will do for red wines or Rieslings from fine vintages. I was pleased to see that the current tasting included both 2016 and 2020 Pinot Noirs, and a 2020 Meritage, but also 2016 and 2012 Rieslings. The $14.95 cost of this tasting is worthwhile.
***Wagner Riesling Select 2012: Nose: complex fusel oil, apple, peach. Palate: juicy, sweet, BIG ripe apple and peach, apricot and pineapple (4.7% R.S.). Just beginning to open its wings after 10 years of age, and will reward those looking for dimension and intensity of flavor in Rieslings.
**Fox Run Vineyards Semi-Dry Riesling ’21: One of the better ’21 Rieslings; a nose of ripe apple with a hint of lime, and a full dimension on the palate, more ripe apple flavors.
Other Notable White Wines:
***Hector Wine Co. Sauvignon Blanc ’21: Nose: lime blossom, flinty, racy. Palate: high acidity, flavors of passion fruit and lime; very Sancerre-like, great length and finish. Could drink this summer or lay down for a year.
***Hector Wine Co. Pinot Blanc ’21: Nose: creamy lemon notes. Palate: fresh and lively lemon notes, nice roundness mid-palate. Very stylish, with more dimension than most Pinot Blancs while being true to its varietal flavors.
***Hector Wine Co. Gewürztraminer ’20: Nose: rich, with notes of maturity, big floral lychee, very Alsatian. Palate: spicy phenols help buffer the alcohol (13.2%), full-bodied but balanced; drink by Thanksgiving this year.
**Standing Stone Vineyards Teinturier Saperavi Rosé ’22: Named for the dark-fleshed Georgian Saperavi grape, this original rosé has a dark pink color, with a nose of spice and strawberry. Palate: wonderful fresh strawberry! Some tannins make it dry, chewy and complex.
Favorite Red Wines
**>*Silver Thread Cabernet Franc ’21: One of the rewarding surprises of the 2021 vintage, also shows how Silver Thread’s dedication to low intervention winemaking can pay off where purity and varietal character can trump richness and oakey pretention. The color is light, but the hue is a healthy red. On the nose, Wow! Pure, fresh raspberry (tank fermented). Palate: zesty, bright and fresh raspberry flavors, and like fruit/acid balance. Excellent for the next year or so as a summertime red, but could also lay down for a couple more years for a surprising Thanksgiving treat.
***Wagner Pinot Noir Reserve ’20 (from their reserve tasting): Nose: bright, clean, fresh red cherry. Palate: firm acidity, lively red fruit, no obvious oak. A fresh, clean pleasingly Burgundian style in the Finger Lakes.
***Wagner Pinot Noir Reserve ’16 (from their reserve tasting): Much the same style as the ’20, from a similarly fine vintage, but four years older. Nose: mature, yet lively and fresh red fruits. Palate: mushroom, earth/forest floor, red/black fruit nuances.
***>*Hector Wine Co. Merlot ’21: Nose: impressive for the vintage, with ripe black fruits, herbs, fresh and zesty. Palate: Wow! Large volume, ripe black fruits, lively acidity, with mocha chocolate notes on the finish. Could be the prize wine of the vintage, with great varietal characterr in a very Finger Lakes style.
**>*Hector Wine Co. Syrah ’21: Nose of bacon fat and bright roasted red cherries. Palate: oak, smoke and roasted plums and cherries. Impressive ripeness and varietal character for the vintage.
***Standing Stone County Line Cabernet Sauvignon ’20: Nose: complex, closed but with hints of black cassis and briar fruits. Palate: vibrant Finger Lakes acidity. BIG volume, ripe black fruits and tannins, licorice flavors. Amazing depth, complexity and balance, with aging potential. Note: there is Brettanomyces on the finish.
***>*Standing Stone Barrel Select Saperavi ’20: Nose: subtle, elegant ripe black fruits. Palate: gutsy, big tannins but ripe, with rich blackberry flavors. Young, needs a lot of time, but promising and stylish.
First, we’ll start on the east side, at Weis Vineyards, where German-born proprietor and winemaker Peter Weis proudly displays a banner as “New York Winery of the Year” for 2022. It’s an easy walk (or U-turn) from Weis to Domaine Leseurre next door, where proprietor Sebastien Leseurre specializes in a style influenced by lees contact to integrate fruit and acidity in the cool Finger Lakes.
Last year, I was impressed with a whole range of Weis wines. This year, the consistency of quality was still there, but it was the disappointing 2021 vintage that let me down. Still, there are plenty of worthwhile wines to look for here.
**Weis Winzer Select Riesling K ’21: The “K” here is the classic Kabinett style of German Riesling, off-dry but made without chaptalization so the ripeness is natural. Nose: subtle but ripe apple. Palate: fine fruit/acid balance, a tart/sweet finish, off-dry. Needs time but stylish for the vintage.
**>* Weis Semi-Dry Riesling ’21: 2.6% R.S. Nose: Wow! Rich, unctuous, ripe peach and apple with a hint of pineapple, fine fruit/acid balance. One of the stars of the ’21 vintage, drinking well now, will be a candidate for pairing with Thanksgiving, but could lay down for a decade for more complexity.
**>*Leseurre Terroir d’Excellence Riesling ’19: This is a reserve-style Riesling and priced accordingly ($35). Nose: complex, with pineapple hints. Palate: dry, full-bodied, with lots of depth and pineapple flavors, firm acidity on the finish.
Other Notable White Wines
***Leseurre Gewürztraminer ’19: stainless steel fermented. Nose: lovely fragrant rose water and apricot. Palate: firm acidity, bright citrus fruit, lively and balanced, bottle age helps the balance and volume.
***Weis Gewürztraminer ’21: Nose: BIG floral/lychee aromatics with peach and apricot. Palate:R great acidity, plus Gewürztraminer viscosity. Young and zesty, has the guts to last a few years.
Favorite Red Wines
**>*Leseurre Reserve Red Blend ’19 (Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot): Nose: Wow! Spice, fruit and oak, all nicely balanced. Palate: firm acid and ripe fruit, still needs 2-3 years to reach its peak but stylish.
**Weis Schulhaus Red ’22 Made from 95% Chancellor (a red French hybrid), this is Weis’s basic everyday red, and is very pleasing. Nose: ripe, jammy plum and juicy black cherry. Palate: ripe black fruits, juicy but fine fruit/acid balance with a fresh finish; 0.8% R.S. makes for a crowd-pleasing just off-dry but juicy red wine, and at less than $19, it’s a deal!
***Weis Zweigelt ’20: It’s reassuring to see this (possibly superior) progeny of the widely-planted Blaufränkisch + Sank Laurent showing so well in this superior vintage. Peter Weis has been making a stylish rosé from this Austrian red grape (now the most widely planted red varietal in that country), and everyone now growing and making Blaufränkisch in the Finger Lakes and nearby cool climates should buy this wine, taste it with colleagues and discuss it. Pronounce it phonetically as “TzvIgelt”, it has racy fresh red briar fruit aromas, with raspberry flavors and acidity on the palate, without being too tart, then pepper and tannins, but smooth, offering maybe more dimension than Blaufränkisch alone, but still in a cool-climate format.
This wine had vibrant floral notes and bright red/black cherry on the nose. Palate: ripe cherries and berries with vibrant acid and tannins. Stylish, still evolving.
****Weis Cabernet Sauvignon ’20: Nose: clean, fresh, ripe cassis and baking spices. Palate: BIG volume, acidity and tannins, ripe cassis flavor in the background. Needs time, but promising and excellent balance of elements and Finger Lakes terroir, age until 2030+.
On the west side of Keuka Lake, I visited Heron Hill, Point of the Bluff, Dr. Frank Vinifera Cellars, and Bully Hill Vineyards.
***Dr. Frank Riesling Nature ’19: Methode champenoise sparkler, two years on the lees. Nose: complex, smoky, hint of petrol and apple. Palate: complex, dry, multi-faceted flavors, zesty acidity, a great way to showcase fine sparkling Riesling.
***Dr. Frank “Margrit” Riesling ’20: From a single vineyard in Hector, southeast Seneca Lake, this is one of the more impressive Rieslings from the hot, dry 2020 vintage (clones are #356 and #90, both German). Nose: more dimension than with most of this vintage, with flint, apple, and pineapple. Palate: lots of flavor, dimension, and intensity. Promising; stylish now, will age well.
**>*Dr. Frank Dry Riesling ’22: Recently released, the nose is largely closed. Palate: zesty lime with ripe green/red apple, and white peach. Very young but promising (earned 90 + in Wine & Spirits). Dry and zesty (0.7% R.S.)
***Dr. Frank Reserve Riesling ’21 (Auslese style, 4.5% R.S.) This wine was harvested later than most, with a fair amount of botrytis mold (that concentrates the flavors). Nose: a hint of Rheinpfalz pineapple. Palate: rich, round, classic Auslese style; elegant! Enjoy near term or cellar.
**Heron Hill Ingle Vineyard Riesling ’20 (1.1% R.S.): Nose: fresh ripe yellow apple. Palate: juicy, plump, unusually low acidity but typical for the vintage. Lovely and bright with a juicy finish.
**>*Point of the Bluff Estate Dry Riesling ’19: Nose: lovely green apple and lime, flint/mineral notes. Palate: big volume, ripe apple flavor, firm acidity, holding well, could drink now or hold.
**>*Point of the Bluff Single Vineyard Riesling Reserve ’19: Nose: racy, flinty, lime flower. Palate: high acidity, nervy, green apple. Closed; still needs another 10 years of aging at this point, but impressive and will reward the patient collector.
***Point of the Bluff Riesling Semi-Dry ’21 (2.2% R.S.): Nose: ripe apple and white peach. Palate: juicy, plump, easy to drink and fun! Also a deal at $17.
Other Notable White Wines:
***Dr. Frank Brut ’19: a blend of all 3 classic Champagne grapes incl. 5% Pinot Meunier (55% Chardonnay and 40% Pinot Noir), with 30 months aging on the lees. Nose: classic champagne aromas of yeast, smoke and mature fruit. Palate: creamy, round, well-integrated, with a fresh finish. A classic interpretation that is versatile and stylish.
**Point of the Bluff Unoaked Chardonnay ’22: One of my favorite Finger Lakes Chardonnays, with a very regional style. Nose: lovely flinty Finger Lakes green apple and hint of lime. Palate: apple, lime, high acidity, long finish, reminds me of a Macon, stylish.
**Point of the Bluff Dry Rosé of Blaufränkisch ’22: First, a lovely vibrant dark pink! Nose: lovely fresh strawberry fruit. Palate: great fruit/acid balance; strawberry flavors and lively acidity!
***Bully Hill Cayuga NV: (off-dry, 11% alc.) It’s not often I rate non-vintage hybrid wines this highly, but when a wine over-delivers on your expectations, and under-delivers on price ($10), you should point it out. Nose: fresh-cut cantaloupe, and a cool freshness that is the classic style of Finger Lakes white wines. Palate: off-dry, but an excellent fruit/acid balance that allows the grape to be ripe with a full fruitiness, but also with a clean, fresh finish.
Favorite Red Wines:
***Point of the Bluff Blau Nouveau ’22: I wrote about this very fun, original wine last year; it’s a Blaufränkisch whole cluster fermented by carbonic maceration (as with Beaujolais Nouveau). Nose: elderberry and boysenberry! Juicy! Palate: also very juicy! Dry, but fun, and versatile. I understand they serve this chilled at the Rooftop Winery in Brooklyn; a great way to enjoy it. It must be popular in the City (not sure if that’s Manhattan or Brooklyn), because it’s $30 at the winery, but it’s at least worth a taste.
****Dr. Frank Old Vine Pinot Noir ’20: These vines were planted in 1958 by Dr. Konstantin Frank and the second oldest commercial Pinot Noir vines in the country, I’ve always been a fan of this classically Burgundian-style Pinot with a Finger Lakes terroir, but this is the best I’ve ever tasted. Nose: complex, with dried cherries, herbs, forest floor and mushrooms. Palate: mind-blowing! Intense, concentrated fruit, oak, and clean earth nuances. Drinking well now, best this fall/winter, but worth laying a bottle down for another 2-3 years. Also, the best value I’ve seen in the 2020 Finger Lakes vintage reds @ $28.
***Dr. Frank Blaufränkisch ’20: Nose: closed. Palate: juicy, smooth, rich but fresh and zesty blackberry. Large volume, smooth tannins, very sexy, voluptuous. Excellent varietal and regional style.
***Dr. Frank Cabernet Franc ’20: Nose: ripe blackberry! Palate: juicy, a bit soft, texture voluptuous, (which I almost never associate with this grape), ripe and smooth. Should be a delightful surprise for anyone who never thinks of Cabernet Franc as being sexy.
***Dr. Frank Saperavi ’20: Nose: closed. Palate: juicy, smooth, ripe, and rich with ripe tannins. 13.5% alc. Flavors still largely closed but ripe plum and black briar fruits starting to emerge. Worth waiting for; drink 2025-2035.
Most Original Wines on this Finger Lakes Visit:
**Montezuma Winery Sparkling Lemberger (Blaufränkisch) Blanc de Noirs ‘21: Montezuma is actually north of and between Seneca and Cayuga lakes on Rts. 5&20, and 96. Winemaker Phil Plummer is very active and always experimenting with new things. This blanc de noirs is truly blanc, with no visible red wine tint. Made in methode champenoise, it has a strong full mousse, with intriguing black cherry aromas and flavors. Not yet released, it will be worth waiting for, and is versatile and dry.
*** Montezuma Winery Sparkling Diamond Pet-Nat ’22: Pet-Nat is shorthand for pétillant natural, otherwise known as methode ancestral, where the wine undergoes primary fermentation in tank or bottle with no disgorging of yeast and no secondary fermentation. A cloudy wine is usually part of the deal. Diamond is a heritage American hybrid of Concord x Iona dating to the 19th century (Concord has Semillon as part of its DNA). The wine has impressed West Coast judges, and this particular wine won a gold medal in the 2023 Finger Lakes International wine competition.
Nose: a wonderful fresh grape-iness as with fresh white table grapes, and a creamy yeastiness. Palate: smooth, round and creamy, but balanced by zesty freshness and fine grapey flavor. Off-dry, very stylish and versatile.
I’ve heard from producers as diverse as Bully Hill and Dr. Frank that port-style wines are making a comeback; here are two spectacular examples.
****Dr. Frank Pinot Gris Tawny Dessert Wine ’18: (since “Port” is a geographically-protected name, U.S. producers can’t use it unless they were “grandfathered” in before EU countries made it illegal to use these terms like port and sherry on wines made outside those delineated regions, so U.S. wineries commonly use “dessert wine” as a stylistic label).
This Pinot Gris was two years in barrel, and has a light gold color. Nose: lovely, clean, good varietal character of ripe pineapple. Palate: bright orange citrus, firm acidity, round, with a hint of “tawny” age character. Fantastic integration of all elements and finesse on the finish! Could enjoy as soon as the winter holidays, or let age for another couple of years. $60/375 ml.
****Dr. Frank Amur Dessert Wine ’19: This is the red version of Dr. Frank’s new dessert wines in a port style. This one is named “Amur” because it’s made from a hybrid of Vitis vinifera and Vitis amurensis, the latter named for the Amur river separating Siberia from Manchuria, so we know it’s cold-hardy enough for the Finger Lakes. Nose: just like you’d expect from a genuine Portuguese port wine; loads of spice and black fruits. Palate: high tannins and acidity, intense black fruit flavors! Very young, needs five years aging (even in a half-bottle), but definitely worth it! $60/375 ml.
Ratings key: * = good, ** = very good, *** = classic style and quality, **** = exceptional, outstanding, + = given rating plus, > = will increase in quality with time.
In Memorium – John W. “Bill” Moffett, 1939-2023
Bill Moffett, former owner with his late wife Hope Merletti Moffett of Vineyard & Winery Services, including Vineyard & Winery Management, a trade magazine, the Wineries Unlimited trade show and conference, and several wine competitions including the International Eastern Wine Competition, passed away peacefully on June 3rd in Rochester. A celebration of life service will be held on Saturday July 15th from 4:00-6:00 pm at Atwater Vineyards on southeast Seneca Lake.
Bill was my mentor and I worked for the company as East Coast Editor, Conference Manager for Wineries Unlimited and director of the International Eastern Wine Competition for nearly 11 years. Today, I carry on the work he and Hope began and welcomed me into, as Conference Manager of the Eastern Winery Exposition, now the second largest production wine trade show and conference in North America.
A more complete obituary can be found here.