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Your Comprehensive Guide to the Wineries of the Hudson Valley

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Benmarl Winery / Photo by Sabrina Sucato

The country’s oldest wine-making region grows new grape varieties, produces award-winning wines, and hosts events in upstate New York.

By Francesca Furey, Polly Sparling, and Sabrina Sucato

There’s more than one river running through the Hudson Valley.

While the mighty Hudson gives the region its namesake, the flowing trails of local vino are what mark the Valley as one of the most beloved wine countries in the United States. The reputation is well-deserved, too. Throughout the Hudson Valley, winemakers craft vintages that are always a cut above the rest. Whether they’re keeping production as close to the estate as possible (hey, Benmarl), prioritizing sustainable practices (like Hudson-Chatham), or switching it up with cider (we see you, Applewood), the wineries of the Hudson Valley find perfect harmony between cutting-edge practices and traditional techniques.

If the results are any indication, their dedication is a sure formula for success. Hudson Valley wines are award-winners across the board, and that’s not just a figure of speech. Luckily for Hudson Valleyites, they’re all right at our fingertips.

The Wineries

Whether you’re a savvy oenophile, a seasoned sommelier, or an eager and curious amateur, you’ll enjoy visiting these Hudson Valley wineries. In addition to proffering distinctive and delicious wines (with some offering just a few vintages and others offering as many as 50), each one has its own ambiance. In addition to tastings, pairings, and tours, some offer lunch and dinner, others live music, dancing, and even wagon rides. Visit one, or make a weekend of it and visit several. Just make sure to appoint a designated driver!

Applewood Winery

Warwick

The vibe: Located in a 40-acre apple orchard on the site of Orange County’s oldest farm (it dates back to 1700), Applewood currently sells wine favorites like Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc, and barrel-fermented reds, as well as its Naked Flock hard cider. Summer weekends are busy here; have lunch or snacks in the cafe while enjoying free concerts on select afternoons.

Perks: Sampling the wines in the Hudson Valley winery’s three-season tasting room, which overlooks a picturesque lake.

Sip this: Owner and winemaker Jonathan Hull suggests Traminette, “a hybrid white that’s very fruity; it tastes like a lychee nut.”

tasting room | live music | food | cider

Baldwin Vineyards

Pine Bush

The vibe: Fruit wines are the stars at Baldwin: The strawberry and spiced apple wines are brilliant offerings, with previous black raspberry and red raspberry wines (the latter is named Trilogy in honor of the owners’ triplet grandchildren) were medal winners at the 2014 Finger Lakes International Wine Competition. The vineyard list includes several whites, off-whites, and reds, as well.

Perks: Wine flights and afternoons spent sitting out on the Hudson Valley winery’s lawn.

Sip this: Perfect for the fall season, Spiced Apple tastes just like Grandma’s apple pie…especially if Grandma spiked it.

views | wine flights

A Toast to Summer

Adobe Stock/ Vitality Korovin

Bashakill Vineyards

Wurtsboro

The vibe: Paul Deninno, owner and winemaker at this Catskills winery, takes eco-consciousness to a new level. “Our grapes are grown organically,” he says, “and we use sheep for weed control and fertilizer.” Bashakill always has a substantial selection available, ranging from bold reds to dry whites to sweet roses. The Red Fox Merlot, “has been aging in our cave for 18 months,” says Deninno, referring to the winery’s concrete underground room, which provides the constant temperature and high humidity that’s perfect for aging wine.

Perks: Bashakill’s specials menu is filled with appetizing treats ranging from mini mezze to spicy tuna tostada, making it a must for anyone who wants food and drinks at a Hudson Valley winery.

Sip this: “We are probably best-known for our Cabernet Franc, which we call Black Bear,” says Deninno.

sustainable | food | cocktails

Benmarl Winery

Benmarl Winery / Photo by Sabrina Sucato

Benmarl Winery

Marlboro

The vibe: Sweeping Hudson River views, charming wood-paneled structures—from the gazebo to the tasting room—and small-batch wines make this oldest vineyard in the country truly special. Come at sunset for memorable experience and make sure to taste their herbal estate Baco noir.

Benmarl Winery, Marlboro. By Rina Brindamour

Perks: Benmarl goes above and beyond: their experts suggest what meals are best enjoyed with the wine of your choosing (Marlboro Village Blush, for example, pairs perfectly with Thai food). Of course, all the wine tastes delicious with Benmarl’s excellent wood-fired pizza.

Sip this: Pétillant, a fruity cabernet franc

tasting room | wine club | live music | grapes | food | reservations recommended | Shawangunk Wine Trail

Brimstone Hill Vineyard & Winery

Pine Bush

The vibe: Throughout the course of its 30-plus years in business, the small winery has remained “fundamentally interested in producing quality wines with a French character at a reasonable price,” according to its website. The wines on its list include a sparkling white made in the French “méthode champenoise” (similar to Champagne), and Noiret, a hybrid red wine with a peppery accent.

Perks: A family feel with top-tier wines

Sip this: The Chardonnay, which is aged in oak and has a buttery finish and citrus overtones

tasting room | French flair | Shawangunk Wine Trail

Brotherhood Winery

Washingtonville

The vibe: This spot proclaims to be the longest continually operated winery in the U.S. (it produced its first vintage in 1839). But Brotherhood never gets old, with over 50 vintages, specialty and dessert wines, and even sangria and riesling cans.

Perks: Touring Brotherhood is a bit different from the other wineries on this list: descend a dozen steps into an underground cellar that’s home to massive barrels that once aged wines and a comprehensive timeline of its history.

Sip this: White sangria

wine club | live music | grapes | food | reservations recommended | Shawangunk Wine Trail

Clearview Vineyard

Warwick

The vibe: This winery produced its first 10 bottles of wine in 2008 — one of the owners, Karen Graessle, stomped the grapes herself. In 2014, four of its vintages took home medals at the Hudson Valley Wine and Spirits Competition. Many of its wines are estate-bottled, using only grapes produced in its own vineyard.

Perks: Food and live music on weekends

Sip this: Estate Divinity White, made from a hybrid of Cayuga White and Riesling grapes developed by Cornell Cooperative Extension; Clearview is one of only a handful of vineyards that grow this grape.

food | live music | wine tastings | patio

A toast to summer

Courtesy of Clinton Vineyards, Clinton Corners

Clinton Vineyards

Clinton Corners

The vibe: Considered the vineyard that helped put the HV on the wine map (thanks to the late winemaker and owner Ben Feder’s 1974 seyval blanc), Clinton is a bountiful, 100-acre vineyard that champions agri-tourism. The grounds are pretty with a pond, sculptures, a barn-style tasting room, and plenty of places to picnic.

Perks: Themed tasting menus make ordering flights a lot of fun. Go for the $20 Dutchess (featuring Clinton wines plus cameos from Whitecliff Vineyard), the $23 French Connection (highlighting French classics like seyval blanc, kir, and a sparkling wine), and the Royale—a fun tasting with proprieter Phyllis Feder.

Sip this: Jubilee, a sparkling Champagne

tasting room | grapes | reservations recommended | Dutchess Wine Trail

City Winery Sunset

Photo courtesy of Emily Gross

City Winery Hudson Valley

Montgomery

The vibe: Making its home at the historic Montgomery Mills property located at 23 Factory Street, the winery is the first non-urban site for City Winery, which currently operates locations across the country. In addition to serving its signature vino, the winery also welcomes visitors to its onsite restaurant, with concerts, tastings, and events held throughout the year as well.

Perks: City Winery may be known for its wines, but don’t pass on the food. Keep an eye out for themed dinners throughout the year.

Sip this: Montgomery Mills Riesling 2019, a crisp, New York white with hints of stone fruit and citrus

tasting room | grapes | food | live music | events | historic details

 

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Demarest Hill Winery Vineyard & Distillery

Warwick

The vibe: As the largest winery in Warwick, Demarest Hill sits on a picturesque hilltop in Orange County. The winery is home to 80-plus varieties of wine, along with a substantial selection of Italian-esque products to bring the Mediterranean to the Hudson Valley.

Perks: An extensive number of products are offered by Italian native Francesco Ciummo, a self-described “winemaker, wine seller, and wine drinker.” Besides whites and reds, Demarest has a long list of distilled beverages — such as Italian favorites like grappa, anisette, and limoncello — as well as balsamic vinegar.

Sip this: Black Pearl, a full-bodied red, was a prize-winner at the New York State Fair; Chardonnay Supreme is made from select Long Island grapes and has a crisp, smooth finish.

views | distilled spirits | open daily

El Paso Winery

Ulster Park

The vibe: “I do it all myself,” says Maryl Vogel, owner of this small winery best known for its dry red blends. About 25 varieties of wine are currently on its list, which features New York State grapes front and center. “My reds come from Long Island; the Chardonnay and whites are from the Finger Lakes,” she says.

Perks: Munching finger foods on the Hudson Valley winery’s scenic deck. “It’s really become a popular place to come and hang out,” says Vogel.

Sip this: Black Bear, Vogel’s bestselling Cabernet/Merlot blend

tastings | curbside pickup | deck

Hudson-Chatham Winery

Ghent

The vibe: From the minds of two Culinary Institute of America grads, HCW features wines that are sustainably farmed from hybrid grapes and pair well with most meals. The sweeping land is gorgeous, with charming black-and-white cottages dotted throughout, Adirondack chairs and picnic areas, and string lights that sparkle as the sun sets.

Perks: The curated HCW experiences can’t be beat. Choose from two options: the $25 flight of six wines and seasonal snacks, or the $50 food and wine package, a communal gathering with wines and handmade kitchen treats guided by winemakers Steven Rosario and Justen Nickell. Reservations required for big groups.

Sip this: Rosado pét-nat

tasting room | grapes | food | reservations recommended 

Kedem Winery

Marlboro

The vibe: Established in Europe in 1848, and still owned by the same family, Kedem specializes in kosher wines distributed by its parent company, New Jersey’s Royal Wine Corp. Approximately 25 wines listed under the Kedem label can be savored at the winery’s remodeled tasting room.

Perks: Kedem offers wine specials for shoppers who want to stock up at this Hudson Valley winery.

Sip this: Kedem Estates Cabernet Sauvignon, made with New York grapes

wine club | tasting room | events

Magnanini Winery

Wallkill

The vibe: The Magnanini grounds are where you want to spend a perfect summer’s day: there are gardens and fountains among its grapevines; patio seating cooled by multi-colored shade sails; and plenty of lively weekend events like pasta nights, “Live in the Vines” concerts, and Sunday brunches.

Perks: Its more than just a winery, it’s a food and spirits destination, too. Pair one of four whites, four reds, or two rosés with rotating menus (depending on the event/day) from its on-site restaurant. Magnanini also makes grappa (an Italian pomace brandy) from vineyard grape skins distilled in 30-gallon pot stills.

Sip this: Mirtillo, a refreshing blend of seyval blanc and cranberry juice

tasting room | live music | grapes | food | reservations recommended | Shawangunk Wine Trail

Milea Estate Vineyard Offers Breathtaking views

Photo courtesy of Milea Estate Vineyard

Milea Estate Vineyard

Staatsburg

The vibe: A modern farmhouse-style tasting room overlooks the scenic vineyards and rolling hills of Dutchess County. Order a flight and pizza, tapas, or charcuterie, and then settle in on their lovely patio.

a toast to summer

Courtesy of Milea Estate Vineyard, Staatsburg

Perks: Check out Milea’s new “Hudson Valley Heritage Wines” collection of red and white blends, which honors the region’s contributions to the wine industry and unique heritage grapes that are grown here. Plus, there’s Food Truck Fridays and live music every weekend.

Sip this: 2020 pinot noir rosé

tasting room | wine club | live music | grapes | food | Dutchess Wine Trail 

a toast to summer

Courtesy Millbrook Vineyards & Winery, Millbrook

Millbrook Vineyards & Winery

Millbrook

The vibe: This beloved 130-acre estate boasts a renovated 1940s vaulted barn, daily indoor, outdoor, and reserve wine tastings, a taproom and terrace, and 30 acres of vines which produce top vino including chardonnay, Riesling, and cabernet franc.

Perks: Come for a picnic of flights and cheese boards and enjoy weekend events like the Friday night food trucks, Vineyard Vibes jazz concerts on Saturdays, and a seasonal art gallery in the barn loft.

Sip this: Tocai Friulano, a white sauvignon vert

tasting room | wine club | live music | grapes | food | Dutchess wine trail

a toast to summer

Nostrano Vineyards, Milton. Courtesy of Alex Healy Photo

Nostrano Vineyards

Milton

The vibe: A family-owned 75-acre fruit farm with 10 acres of grapevines and a grand weeping willow that garners all the attention. You’ll find classic estate wines in its red barn-style tasting room, with a rosé, two rieslings, and a limited Baco noir made from the farm’s oldest vines taking center stage.

Perks: Beyond the whimsical tasting bar overlooking the farmland—which serves up Instagram-worthy flights, glasses, and charcuterie—Nostrano’s proprietor, Nic Bozzo, focuses on sustainability and landscape architecture (he’s traveled to New Zealand to hone his agricultural tourism and winery design skills). Oh, and did we mention they have frosés?

Sip this: estate Ava rosé

tasting room | live music | grapes | food

Palaia Winery and Meadery

Highland Mills

The vibe: A 200-year-old red-roofed bank barn is home to a sleek winery and tasting room, with sweeping views of a 10-acre vineyard. Palaia (pronounced puhlie-ah) embraces ‘70s hippie culture, with a peace sign emblazoned on their logo and delicious, wittily-named wines like the semi-dry white Pearl Power, semi-sweet rosé Pinkish Floyd, and semi-sweet red blend Deadish Red.

Perks: Live music is Palaia’s thing, with tribute and cover bands on stage all day long, and popular performances and events, like the Woodstock and Harvest festivals at the vineyard, that draw thousands.

Sip this: Pinkish Floyd

tasting room | live music | grapes | food | Shawangunk wine trail

Quartz Rock Vineyard

Marlboro

The vibe: Formerly known as Glorie Farm, this winery exudes a farm chic aesthetic, with picnic tables, blossoming trees, and a rustic barn-style tasting room. Dogs are welcomed with open arms and there’s an on-site fruit CSA through Nightingale Farm.

Perks: If you love sweet and fruity wine, Quartz Rock will not disappoint. Order one of their many berry-based wines, like the dry Spring Berries or Raspberry, or the fan-fave Candy Ass Red—which they call a “grape juice for grown-ups.”

Sip this: estate seyval blanc

tasting room | wine club | live music | grapes | food | Shawangunk Wine Trail

Robibero Winery

New Paltz

The vibe: A small but mighty winery that’s almost 20 years old and nestled between Mohonk and Minnewaska preserves and the Wallkill River. Robibero’s 90-ft. deck has a picturesque view of the vineyard, but you’re welcome to bring your own chairs and blankets to sit and picnic on the grand lawn.

Perks: The vineyards here are open for exploring. Walk through the grapevines and peek at the different colors and varieties. After roaming the 42 acres, fill up on wood-fire pizza (available on weekends).

Sip this: 87 North, a blend of Vidal blanc and Cayuga white

tasting room | wine club | grapes | Shawangunk Wine Trail

Stoutridge Vineyard

Marlboro

The vibe: An Italian-villa style tasting room sitting on lovely 225-year-old farmland and limestone ridges with bench-lined ponds, an 1800s-era stone farmhouse, a circa 1910 barn, and vineyards producing over 25 varieties of grapes. Wine is made by gravity winemaking—a multi-level process that uses gravity to control the flow of wine fermentation and production, giving it a unique flavor of freshness, vibrancy, and complexity.

Perks: Stoutridge is an ideal outing for wine and spirits lovers: beyond the vineyard, it also operates as a distillery with an impressive collection of absinthes, bitters, brandies, gins, Turkish and Greek mastics, liqueur, vodka, and whiskeys.

Sip this: Ridge White, a blend of seyval blanc and Niagara

tasting room | wine club | live music | grapes | food | reservations recommended | Shawangunk Wine Trail

Torne Valley Vineyards

Hillburn

The vibe: Awarded the distinction of becoming the first fully functioning winery in Rockland County, the vineyard resides on a historic 19th-century country estate. On weekends, guests can enjoy a small plates menu at the Vineyards’ restored Victorian mansion and, after a tasting, take a stroll around the beautifully landscaped grounds overlooking the Ramapo River.

Perks: Weekend wine tastings and local music at a charming Hudson Valley winery

Sip this: Sweet Summertime, a blend of Cayuga, Vidal Blanc, and Vignoles grape varietals. With hints of peach and citrus, this vineyard favorite is best served cold or as the perfect foundation for your summertime sangria.

tasting room | live music | views | food

 

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Tousey Winery

Germantown

The vibe: A small, laidback tasting room with brewpub-style seating serving up seven whites, four reds, and a bubbly chardonnay. Enjoy your glass indoors or outside on picnic benches.

Perks: The tasting room is connected to a café serving up wine-friendly foods such as charcuterie, flatbreads, and salads. Don’t leave without picking up a bottle of the fan-favorite Crème de Cassis, a sweet, red liqueur made from currants and honey that’s produced on-site.

Sip this: Queen of Clermont, a dry white blend

tasting room | wine club | grapes | food

Warwick Valley Winery & Distillery

Warwick

The vibe: Home to much more than just wine, Warwick produces 10 bottles—from classics like pinot gris and riesling to gewürztraminer and cabernet franc. They’re best known for their fruity bottles—most of the selections, including their sangria and Winston’s Harlequin Port dessert wine—are sweet and floral.

Perks: Its location in the Black Dirt Region means plenty of apple picking at its blossoming orchards and fruit-forward wines such as their Black Dirt Blush, a light red blend, and Black Dirt Red, a smooth Baco noir that’s aged for nine months.

Sip this: Harvest Moon, a blend of Vidal blanc and Cayuga white

tasting room | live music | grapes | food | Shawangunk Wine Trail

Whitecliff Vineyard & Winery

Whitecliff winery

Courtesy of Yancey Stanfroth-Migliore

Gardiner

The vibe: Tucked alongside the winding Wallkill River, one of the region’s largest vineyards grows 20 grape varieties—including hybrid blends of seyval blanc and gamay noir. Indulge in glasses that make wine lovers flock from all over: Whitecliff is known for their merlot malbec, reserve chardonnay, and gamay noir.

Perks: The vineyard boasts an impressive selection of French blends and grape varieties, with world-class pinot noir, gamay, and cabernet franc always available. If you’re on the east side of the river, you can get a taste of Whitecliff at their new Hudson-based vineyard and tasting room, Whitecliff at North River on Route 23 (scheduled to open June 4).

Sip this: Awosting White, a blend of seyval blanc and vignoles

tasting room | wine club | live music | grapes | food | reservations recommended | Shawangunk Wine Trail

A toast to summer

Courtesy of Milea Estate Vineyard

Grapes That Thrive Here

French-American hybrids: seyval blanc, vidal blanc, verdelet, vignoles, Baco noir, chelois, and Foch.

Vinifera: chardonnay, riesling, pinot blanc, pinot moir, gruner veltliner, cabernet franc. “The Hudson Valley is the best place to grow cab franc in the United States, period,” says Barry Milea (pictured with his wife Sang). Along with Benmarl, Millbrook, Fjord Vineyards, Quartz Rock, Robibero, and Whitecliff, Milea is part of the Hudson Valley Cabernet Franc Coalition. For more information, visit hvcabfranc.com.


Related: Tie the Knot at the Hudson Valley’s Gorgeous Wineries

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