When thinking of wineries to visit to enjoy fine wines in Niagara, people tend to automatically think of the wineries in Niagara, Ontario. While a lot of quality wine can be found just across the Niagara River, many overlook the excellent wines being made right in our backyard – in the Niagara winemaking region of New York. There are more than twenty wineries in the region with more on the way this year. With such a big list, it might seem a daunting task to select wineries that are worth the trip. Let me make it easy for you. Here are five wineries making world-class wine that are just a short drive from anywhere in Western New York.
Arrowhead Spring Vineyards
Arrowhead Spring Vineyards has built its reputation on the quality of its dry red wines. From its excellent Meritage Reserve red blend to producing one of the best examples of syrah in New York State, this winery is worth a visit, especially if you’re a fine wine fan. Co-owners, Robin and Duncan Ross, offer visitors well-made vinifera wines in a cozy setting in Lockport.
Arrowhead Spring Vineyards
4746 Townline Road, Lockport, NY 14094
Chateau Niagara Winery
A trip to Chateau Niagara Winery in Newfane continually ranks as one of the best winery visits in Niagara. Owners, Kathy and Jim Baker, offer their customers wines with a sense of place – a mantra that Jim will tell you when you visit. Jim’s storytelling rivals his winemaking skills. Drive to Newfane for one the many stories of Jim’s wines and stay to sample some excellent wine like their Hungarian red blend – Bull’s Blood.
2466 West Creek Road, Newfane, NY 14108
For a short ride to Cambria, New York, you’ll be rewarded with a visit to quaint country vineyard and winery on the Niagara Escarpment. This winery built by the Biehl Family has much to offer, including one of the best chardonnays in the region. Eveningside’s pinot noir and cabernet franc similarly are not to be missed.
4794 Lower Mountain Road, Cambria, NY 14094
Freedom Run Winery
The Manning Family has built their winery and crafted their wines to reflect their love of art. A stop at the winery’s tasting room in Lockport will yield a variety of tasting experiences. Visitors can enjoy tastings of the winery’s dry vinifera wines, including their award winning pinot noir and meritage blends. You’ll also be able to enjoy their dessert wines and Apple Jack. Your non-wine loving friends that come along for the ride can enjoy craft beer while you sip on some of the best from Niagara.
5138 Lower Mountain Road, Lockport, NY 14094
Leonard Oakes Estate Winery
The Oakes Family has been farming in Orleans County for generations. Since 2003, the family has also been operating an award-winning winery that produces excellent vinifera wines from the Niagara region. Winemaker, Jonathan Oakes’ fearless approach delivers both quality and diversity. Take a trip to the winery’s tasting room in Medina and enjoy some of excellent riesling and pinot noir alongside one of the best hard ciders in New York – Steampunk Cider.
10609 Ridge Road, Medina, NY 014103
Take a trip to explore the Niagara winemaking region. You’ll find that you don’t have to drive to Canada or other regions of the United States to enjoy fine wine. It’s being made right in your backyard.