The Best of Long Island’s North Fork Wineries: A Complete Guide

As summer draws to a close and we pack away swimsuits and sunhats, it’s the perfect time to start putting together ideas for next year’s sunny season!

Summer is the perfect time of year to enjoy a perfectly chilled rosé on a luxurious porch.

If that sounds good to you, maybe you should add a trip to New York’s Long Island Wineries to next year’s festivities!

The beautiful coastal scenery alone is a reason to visit, but the wineries and vineyards out on Long Island’s North Fork are creating really excellent wines.

Here’s a guide to the best vineyards on Long Island and all you need to plan a visit to the North Fork!

Location

Where exactly is Long Island? This is a question everyone from out of town asks when they want to visit. (And even some people from in-town too!)

Long Island is an island that is directly southeast of Manhattan. As the name suggests, it is a very long island. It stretches out to the east through the Long Island Sound towards the Atlantic Ocean and runs beneath nearly all of the Connecticut coast.

(There is actually a ferry that travels to and from Long Island and Connecticut, but more on that later.)

The western portion of the island contains Brooklyn and Queens, two fairly well-known parts of New York. These eastern-most parts of LI are actually part of the 5 boroughs of New York City.

The further out you go onto Long Island, you get into Nassau and Suffolk Counties, which are the areas most people recognize as “Long Island.”

After an hour and a half, Long Island splits into two forks at a lovely little town called Riverhead. The South Fork is home to some towns you may have heard of: Montauk and The Hamptons. Known for its luxurious beaches, the South Fork is a major summer vacation destination on the East Coast.

But the North Fork, running just under Connecticut, is home to some of the most elegant and delicious wineries the East Coast has to offer!

Wine Regions of the World

If you’ve had any experience with wine at all, you are probably aware that certain areas of the world are known for their wine production.

  • Portugal has the Duoro Valley.
  • Italy is home to places like Piedmont and Tuscany.
  • France has the largest notoriety and boasts at least 10 separate regions you can visit!

Within the USA most people have heard of the Napa and Sonoma Valleys in California. Perhaps they’ve given a nod to Washington or Oregon or even the Finger Lakes.

But Long Island’s North Fork deserves a place on your world-wine-tour list!

What’s special about North Fork Wineries?

The North Fork is perfectly sandwiched between the Peconic Bay on one side and the Long Island Sound on the other. The cooler, beachy climate is perfect for a number of grape varieties.

Many of the vineyards buy grapes from one another to make up the vines they don’t plant themselves.

This allows a real chance for each winery to make the grapes their own as they use different techniques to make their Pinot Noir different from the one down the street. It’s a delightful opportunity to taste test all sorts of wine-making techniques all on one road!

Long Island’s wines tend to be low to moderate in alcohol, full of intense and powerful aromas and crisply acidic.

History of Long Island

Long Island was originally settled by a number of Native American tribes including the Lenape and the Montaukett. Even today several tribes still inhabit the land.

The first colonizers were the Dutch and the English, and there were a number of disputes over who actually owned the land. After 1674, Long Island was declared English.

During the Revolutionary War, The Battle of Long Island/The Battle of Brooklyn was the largest battle of the war and took place in the modern-day borough of Brooklyn, NY. Long Island (New York in general) fell early in the war and was controlled by Britain until the war’s end.

The eastern areas of Long Island didn’t see much action during the war, except for a few raids and constant occupation by the British troops.

However, Washington knew the importance of a large port like New York and orchestrated a ring of trusted spies. These brave men infiltrated Long Island through to Manhattan and reported the movement of British troops and defenses. Long Island’s modern city of Port Jefferson was the beginning and end of this trail!

Long Island was, and still is, largely rural. The development of ferries, railroads, and subways brought development to the Island and by the late 1800s, it had become the summer destination we know and love today!

Wine-Making on Long Island

Wine production is relatively new on Long Island. It began in the 1970s as the potato farms slowly converted to vineyards.

The wine industry has expanded dramatically in recent decades, but it is still relatively new and therefore, exciting!

Winemakers on the North Fork use a variety of both traditional methods and innovative ones, and they tend to share grape crops to expand their wine offerings.

Before You Go

Like most regions of the wine-producing world, it’s wise to know a little about the region before you plan your trip!

We have information on hotels, transportation, and food – all the necessities for your trip!

Where to Stay on Long Island?

Since it is a tourist destination, there are many hotels, inns, beds, and breakfasts, and even luxury resorts dotted along the Long Island Coast.

Which you pick is really up to how you want to spend your time.

  • Luxury – Look into Shelter Island. A far trip from New York City, you’ll still get to enjoy a change of scenery but stay in style! It does require a long drive and a ferry trip, but the views at the end are totally worth it.
  • The Pridwin Hotel
  • Beachy – The Hamptons or Montauk are the most famous. But you could also look into Riverhead or Aquabogue and enjoy the somewhat quieter beaches of the Peconic River between the two forks.
  • Historical – Long Island is full of some of the oldest history in America, but if you are a Revolutionary War buff (or even if you just watched Turn on AMC) you’ll want to stay in Port Jefferson. This town was the beginning and end of Washington’s spy trail during the War and the site of the ferries to Connecticut that supplied him his information. There’s even still a ferry that runs several times a day now, so feel free to dart over to Connecticut during one of your days!
  • Wines Only – If you’re really only visiting to get a taste of the local libations, what better place to stay than a winery itself! The Shinn Estate has an Inn onsite, so you can wake up to wine first thing in the morning! (More information below.)

There are also plenty of Airbnb options that are definitely more budget-friendly! Just pick the location you’d like to stay and hunt for some AirBnBs available nearby.

How to Travel on Long Island

To get to Long Island:

Long Island can be a little confusing to navigate if you’ve never been before. The best ways to get on the island are:

  • From Connecticut: Take the ferry! There are a number of ferries that go to and from Connecticut and Long Island including the Bridgeport-Port Jefferson line, Davis Park Ferry, Fire Island Ferries, Sayville Ferry, and the South Ferry.
  • From Brooklyn/Manhattan: Take the Long Island Railroad! The LIRR is fairly reliable and budget-friendly, though depending on where you are going you may require more than one transfer. The fare is $21.25 one way if you purchase before you board. Check the schedule before you go, some of the lines only run a few times per day.
    • The Jitney also runs to Greenport from NYC and costs about $24.
  • From anywhere else: Fly into JFK or LaGuardia. Both of these airports are on the island itself, in Queens. One of the south coast and one on the north!

To get to the wineries:

Now that you’re on LI, you’ll need a bit of planning to figure out how to get to the wineries.

I know looking at a map, they all seem relatively close. But a word to the wise, most of them are not walking distance, especially when drunk! (Except a small stretch in Jamesport.) You will need transportation to get from one to the other. The roads connecting them are highways and not safe for long walks with intoxicated people.

There aren’t any easy local public transportation methods like buses or subways on the island. The LIRR won’t get you close enough to specific wineries, so plan a transportation budget in advance.

Shuttle

There was a shuttle service that traveled from Greenpoint to Riverhead and stopped at 30 wineries but service has been temporarily suspended as of July 2019.

Car Service

Renting a limousine is always an option and a classy one! But budget-wise, it’s probably best to go with their tour packages, so we’ll discuss that below. (Though if you want to splurge and get a limousine for just you and your honey to tour the vineyards…call me. We should be friends.)

In my personal experience, your best bet is to use Uber/Lyft to pick up and drop off at each stop. If you’re going with a group, it’s fast, economical, and oh so easy. (Just make sure you bring that phone charger with you!)

Also, be aware that some areas of LI have less reliable cell service, so if you notice your service going in and out, ask the bartenders for their wifi or some assistance!

If you’re really on top of things, you could always schedule all your pickups in advance, but be aware you can’t dilly-dally over a great wine if that’s the case!

Tours

There is a multitude of limousine tours that will take you all the way from NYC to LI and back!

Depending on your pick up/drop off point and how many wineries you intend to visit, this option can rack up quite a tab. Some can run you $350-400 and others will run you about $250 a person.

If you’re really looking for luxury, I’d recommend Gold Star Limousine. Your fee includes pick up/drop off, three wineries, gourmet lunch, waters for the car, and a final stop at Briermere Farm.

If you are looking for a bachelorette party, I cannot recommend First Glass Wine Tours enough. Angelo made everything so absolutely easy for me and the whole day went off without a hitch. The included pick up/drop off, 3 wineries (we paid for tastings and purchases ourselves), snacks, a gourmet 3-course lunch, water for the car, and a gift for the bride. Such a lovely relaxing time and I hardly had to think all day – such a relief after months of planning!

If you’re interested in touring without a limousine, there is an all-day bus tour that can also be great fun! Three wineries, picnic lunch, and a guide are all included. The price is much more reasonable at $105 per person.

Bikes

You can rent bikes from a number of places in the North Fork that will deliver the bikes to you. They’ll go to hotels and even meet you at the train station. But remember, traffic laws still apply to bikers.

So don’t drunk-bike.

Car Rentals

If you have a designated driver, the easiest possible transportation on Long Island is to drive yourself.

Of course, this means the poor sap designated as your driver must not have any wine under any circumstances.

But if you buy enough bottles of wine, they can enjoy them once you are back at home, right?!

There are several car rentals all over LI. You can rent a car in Brooklyn and drive out, rent a car at the airport, or even take the train to somewhere like Riverhead or Port Jefferson and rent one there.

Where to Eat on Long Island?

We all know how much we need to eat a little something if we’re planning a day full of wine drinking. (And if you don’t, here’s your safety warning. Eat something!)

Many of vineyards sell food options on-site, and some even allow you to bring an outside picnic in.

But if you are looking for something a little more substantial, you’ll want to go to some of the main towns in Long Island. This requires a bit of planning since much of the North Fork is long stretches of sea-side road with not much obvious civilization.

Eat a big breakfast before you go. And if you want to eat before you hit the North Fork, you can stop in Port Jefferson or Riverhead where there are several restaurants and shops to stock up on snacks for the car.

Once you’re on the road just on the western side of the fork, Jamesport is probably your best bet. There are just a few restaurants in this area like Jamesport Manor Inn or Jedediah Hawkins. Both are inns, but they boast lovely restaurants to satisfy your lunch-time cravings.

After traveling down the winding roads and stopping at as many wineries as you can, you’ll want to head out to some of the eastern hubs like Greenpoint or Shelter Island where you can feast on seafood, steak, ice cream, and even fine dining! Enjoy fresh clams and crab right by the water or enjoy artisan cocktails while you watch the sunset on your fancy porch.

Seafood

The best seafood on Long Island is usually found in small little places just on the piers. They serve fresh oysters and crab and fried clams…just delicious!

Keep in mind the fancier restaurants in Montauk and The Hamptons will require a reservation in advance during the busy summer months.

Voted number one seafood restaurant on Long Island by locals for years running, you know it has to be good!

Low-key classic Hampton’s seafood experience.

A delicious waterfront restaurant on the North Fork seafood and other bar treats! Enjoy after wandering around the cute village of Greenpoint.

Non-Seafood

If you’re getting a little sick of fish, there are plenty of other options to visit!

An offshoot of the Brooklyn branch, just remembers to bring cash for your steaks because they don’t accept cards.

Burgers and steaks marinated in the original 1955 recipe – to die for! An upscale pub.

Seasonal and local ingredients in a renovated 1800s farmhouse by the water.

There are also a number of little stops you can make along the way at places like the Village Cheese Shop (who doesn’t want cheese with their wine?) and Briermere Farms (because you also need a pie with your wine.)

The Best North Fork Vineyards

Now, the part you have all been waiting for.

There are approximately 90 wineries and vineyards on Long Island’s North Fork.

Since it would be nearly impossible to visit them all in one trip, we’re giving you a review of some of the best so you can make the most out of your trip!

Baiting Hollow Farm Vineyard

Baiting Hollow has a soft spot in my heart because they have a horse rescue on site. Since 2012 they’ve taken in sick, injured, or “to be terminated” horses and given them a second chance. Unfortunately, it seems their rescue is closing after 5 years due to lack of funding. But they continue to support horse rescue and advocate for proper care and protection.

As you’re traveling along the North Fork, the first vineyard you hit is Baiting Hollow. They began producing Merlot in 2002, and have now expanded to rosés and whites.

The tasting house is in a renovated 1861 farmhouse, resplendent with rustic grace and elegance! Baiting Hollow has live music on Wednesday and Saturdays, so be sure to check out their events page to see what’s coming up. They sell mini bottles, as well as a whole line dedicated to their horse rescue and named after the horses.

They also offer frozen wine-margaritas and mini pies for sustenance.

  • Novelty? Horses
  • Picnic? Yes
  • Pet-Friendly? Yes
  • Live music? Yes

Recommendation: Sweet Isis

One of their Rescue Horse Wines. Keep in mind this is a dessert wine so it will be very sweet. It’s full of ripe fruit, but what stands out to me are the notes of clove and lychee. If you’re in the mood for a sweet treat, this will do very nicely!

Jason’s Vineyard

Named after the hero of The Golden Fleece, Jason’s Vineyard probably has the best wine glasses of any winery in the North Fork.

But of course, that’s not a reason they should visit.

They also have alpacas! Which is a reason you should visit?

Jason’s has excellent white wines and good reds. Their staff is incredibly knowledgeable and obviously proud of their winemaking history.

Everything in the tasting room is themed, including their wine names. Even the bar is designed to look like the Argonauts’ ship!

  • Novelty? Alpacas and sheep
  • Pet-Friendly? Yes
  • Wine Choice? White
  • Live Music? On weekends

Recommendation: Golden Fleece

A blended wine that I find surprisingly tasty. I will freely admit, by the time I bought a whole bottle, I’d already had about 3 glasses of wine. But I didn’t regret my purchase when I got home. Which is saying something!

The Golden Fleece is a blend of Cayuga lightened by Seyval and Gewürtraminer. It’s semi-dry, full of melons and pear, but with a hint of spice that deepens the flavors and complexity.

Shinn Estate Vineyards

I wandered into Shinn on a trip with my mother and I’m not really sure why. But we were so happy we did!

We were looking for a pleasant vineyard to relax and enjoy some new wine and maybe do a quick tour. Shinn Estate fit that bill perfectly.

They have both indoor and outdoor seating and an exciting smattering of wines to mix and match. You are able to take a walking tour following a map of the fermentation room and vineyards yourself, provided with a booklet of information to elaborate on anything you see.

Possibly the best part of Shinn Estate is their bed and breakfast! If you want to stay in the heart of the North Fork (or you just had too many glasses at once), it’s the perfect location! You’re given a free glass and tasting with check in and their farmhouse breakfast is delicious.

  • Novelty? Chickens on their tour
  • Accomodation? Bed and Breakfast
  • Seating? Beanbags on the lawn
  • Atmosphere? Relaxing and unhurried

Recommendation: Coalescence

Coalescence might be my favorite Long Island wine. An even split between Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay, the rich fruit flavors are tempered by crisp zippy acidity. The additions of Riesling, Semillon, and Pinot Blanc lighten the body with just a touch of sweet. The stainless steel fermentation of each separate varietal keeps their flavors pure until they blend into this combination of apples, peaches, citrus, and tarragon.

Sherwood House

If you like Chardonnay, you’ll love the wines at Sherwood House.

As such, I did not like the wines at Sherwood House.

We were offered an “all-white tasting,” which sounded great to me. Turns out all their whites are Chardonnays. I was dismayed.

But it was my own fault. I’d been seduced by the terribly cute tasting room and just had to visit.

And yes, their tasting room is all it’s cracked up to be. It’s a renovated 1870s farmhouse, and just what you’d imagine. The main room is full of cozy leather furniture and an inviting fire they light in winter. A joining room contains a chalkboard with all their wine options. Very cute! And even their outdoor areas are beautifully shaded and cozy to sit back and sip your…chardonnay…

Their sparkling rosé is their most popular wine, and definitely one of the ones we enjoyed the most. But they also have several red wines that might tempt your taste buds.

If you like Chardonnay, go. Otherwise, just enjoy the cute pictures of their tasting room online.

  • Novelty? Art Gallery inside
  • Wine options? Chardonnay and Reds
  • Grapes? All grown on-site
  • Fermentation? Stainless Steel and Oak
  • Good for a winter visit? Yes, they have a roaring fireplace

Recommendation: 2017 Brut Rosé

The sparkling is definitely the best option, full of bright raspberries and strawberries, it’s easy to drink and brightens up a summer day!

Paumanok

The name comes from the old Native American name for Long Island itself meaning “The Island that Pays Tribute.” Paumanok is a small vineyard, so you can easily avoid the bustling loud parties at other locations.

They use only estate-grown vines so they are limited to 12,000 cases and their fermenting room is a renovated farmhouse barn. All in all, it makes for a beautiful vineyard to visit and beautiful view to enjoy while you sip your wine.

Both their whites and reds are fantastic, which is good because all their tasting options include both. If you really only want one, you are welcome to leave one glass out, but you’ll pay the same price. May as well try them all!

You can also book private and VIP tours, but they do cost a bit of money and you have to call in advance.

  • Novelty? Sell Oysters on their deck
  • Tours? If you call in advance
  • Vineyard? Beautiful views and flower beds
  • Size? Smaller and less busy

Recommendation: 2018 Chenin Blanc

Lightly floral and faintly sweet, it’s one of the top wines at Paumanok and in LI in general. Pineapple and melon notes with a heavy lemon finish, it’s perfect for summer.

For winter try their Merlot which is full of light red fruits and cherries.

Jamesport Vineyards

I was completely won-over and enamored by Jamesport on my recent visit. I think it may be my new favorite winery.

It is one of the North Fork’s oldest wineries, begun in 1986. The tasting room and winery are located in a 165-year-old renovated barn. It is a father-son enterprise that creates numerous lines highlighting aspects of the North Fork terroir. The Reserve lines are aged a little longer, the Estate line focuses on the agricultural techniques, and the East End wines highlight the maritime terroir of the region.

The tasting room itself is built reminiscent of its old barn days. Wood floors, walls, and ceilings with red accents complete the vibe. And visitors are able to peer through the glass at the winery and its assorted equipment. It makes a lovely backdrop for sipping their vintages.

The outdoor backyard has a bar as well and a covered patio for large groups. Also available are a variety of smaller tables with umbrellas to shield you from the bright afternoon sun. The grassy lawns stretch right up to the vines and it’s a perfect place to relax and let the day pass you by.

Jamesport also has a pizza restaurant on site with wood-fired, brick-oven pizzas. They serve both thin and Neopolitan crust pizzas. If you’ve had a busy day of wine tasting, there is nothing better to hit the spot.

One last selling point, the house at Jamesport Vineyards has room accommodations.

  • Ambiance? Casual, Country Farm, Relaxing
  • Staff? Friendly and accommodating
  • Food? Wood-fired Pizzas and other appetizers
  • Music? Live Jazz
  • Accommodations? Yes
  • Pet-Friendly? Yes

Recommendation: 2018 Estate Chardonnay

I’m normally not a Chardonnay drinker, but the stainless steel aging is a selling point and I needed one more wine in my tasting list. Thank goodness I did! I’ve never had anything quite like this Chardonnay. Your first taste is full of coconut and almond, but the nutty flavor is balanced by honeydew melons and honeysuckle flowers. So absolutely delicious. We bought a bottle on the spot before we’d even finished our glass! I think this may be my new favorite Long Island Wine.

The Estate Sauvignon Blanc and Albariño were delicious as well. Definitely worth a try. (Take their advice and let your Albariño warm up halfway through the glass. It’s a whole new world when it’s warm!)

Laurel Lake

Laurel Lake is the perfect vineyard to visit if you’re with a large group. They have a huge tasting room and a large deck outside for a group to have lunch. Better than that, they have so many cute locations to take photos. Laurel Lake even lets you wander through the vines unsupervised, which is a lot of trust to place on drunk people.

The grounds are huge and the staff is very friendly. Laurel Lake would be the perfect venue to host a large event like a wedding or reception.

The vineyard was purchased and run by two vinter friends, one Chilean and one American. They use indigenous yeast and bacteria, no filtration and age a number of their white wines on the lees which brings in some complex flavors. The reds are surprisingly softer with light tannins.

  • Good for Groups? Yes
  • Photo Ops? Many
  • Allowed in the vines? Yes
  • Tours? Reserve in advance and pay
  • Good for events? Yes
  • Picnic Allowed? Yes

Recommendation: 2015 Cabernet Franc

Light on tannins, but still a dry-mouth feel, the Cabernet Franc finishes smoothly. It’s full of mellow red berries, luxurious vanilla, and toasted wood. There’s even a hint of spicy pepper in the background, that warms up the velvety feel as you sip.

Palmer Vineyard

Palmer is a beautiful vineyard with many different tasting areas. I went with a large group so we were shown to our own table in the back patio. Beautiful views of the vines and sky, everything you could imagine Long Island Vineyard should be.

They have all sorts of fun wines as well since they plant 13 separate varieties on their 49 acres: Gewürtztraminer, Syrah, Viognier, Cabernet Franc, Albariño.

The staff is therefore incredibly helpful if you are unsure what wine you’d like to try and they gauge which wines to let you sample as you provide feedback on the one you just had. Overall a very fun experience and a great place for a novice to learn about new wines!

If you choose to stay indoors, the vibe is very pub-like, but it gets crowded quickly. It’s much easier to relax outdoors.

They also have a resident cat who is a lovely chap!

Palmer was recently acquired by Paumanok Vineyards, but they are retaining the brand for now.

  • Food? Occasional seafood on the deck, Food truck
  • Staff? Incredibly knowledgeable and passionate
  • Bottles? Cannot drink on-site, only by the glass
  • Seating? Numerous areas for groups large and small

Recommendation: 2015 Gewürztraminer

Honestly, I am hard-pressed to choose between the Viognier, Syrah, Albariño, and Gewürztraminer. They were all so delicious and different. Palmer has created incredibly intensely flavored wines. I settled on Gewürztraminer for no reason other than that’s what I feel like drinking right at this moment.

It’s full of lychee and passionfruit. Just a hint of spice but enough to tamper the sweet notes. Bright, happy and perfect for summertime!

The Vionier is full of classic lemon curd and a hint of sour kiwi and pepper which is lovely.

Albariño is not a perfect replica of the Spanish wine, but it has that zippy flavor and notes of peach.

The Syrah is a perfect classic example of rich red berries, spicy peppers, and a hint of violets and smoke.

Raphael

Raphael is at the top of my list for atmosphere and ambiance. Their tag is “new world wines at an old-world vineyard” and they certainly are right. It feels very old-world as you wander through the mahogany staircases and under their tasting room chandelier. You feel like you’re in Italy or Spain…with just a hint of a luxury American log-cabin

Their wines are also sustainably produced and they have a focus on highlighting the unique terroir of the North Fork. No filtration is used, but they do use gravity flow methods since part of their winery is underground. In keeping with old-world tradition, Raphael does practice fruit thinning which reduces their crop but hopefully improves what is left! One last note: everything is harvested by hand. It’s one of the few US vineyards to do so.

Their reds are full of coastal berries and their whites have a maritime saltiness that sets them apart. By focusing on the terroir of the region, Raphael has some of the most unique wines on the island.

Their food options are also superior to most other vineyards.

  • Novelty? Sustainably grown and maintained
  • Ambiance? Old World Mediterranean
  • Focus? North Fork Terroir
  • Food? Upscale Tapas
  • Tours? Reserve in advance and pay
  • Other Libations? Beer

Recommendation: Riesling Port

It’s hard to go wrong with wines from Raphael, both their reds and whites are excellent. But it is rare to come across a vineyard in the US that makes a good approximation of Portuguese port. Raphael does. Their ports are remarkably sweet so be prepared, you won’t get anything dry if you go for their sweets. Full of delightful berries and caramel, it’s perfect to buy a bottle and save it for Christmas.

What to expect at a wine tasting?

When you visit a North Fork Vineyard, most of the time you’ll enter through their tasting room. These rooms are usually stylized and very cozy with a bar taking center stage. Most of them also have an outdoor seating area as well.

Each winery is a little different. Some allow you to order wine at the bar and carry it to your table. Some will provide table service. Some allow you to buy a bottle to drink there, others prefer you buy a bottle at the end and take it with you. Some will let you bring in outside food, but most will not. Especially if they have a kitchen on the premises!

Look up their rules before you go. And be flexible while you are there.

You’ll be able to order a glass, a bottle, or a wine tasting flight. Most wineries have several flight options ranging from all whites to all red to even all reserve wine. (You’ll probably have to pay extra for reserve flights.) Flights range from 4 to 6 glasses, and your bartender will tell you about each wine as they pour.

After that, sit back, relax, and sip your libations of choice until you’re ready to move on!

But do be sure to pay your tab and tip the bartender before you go!

Tips for Visit Vineyards and Wineries

  • Don’t wear lipstick
  • Don’t over-drink
  • Don’t smoke before tasting
  • Don’t wear perfume or cologne
  • Don’t be afraid to spit or dump your tasting, especially to avoid drinking too much
  • Don’t plan more than 5 stops if you want to take your time with the wine (3 is perfect)
  • Don’t haggle prices
  • Don’t treat the tasting room like a bar
  • Do bring small change to tip the tenders
  • Do bring a phone charger
  • Do eat before you go and plan to eat during
  • Do bring a small journal to write tasting notes and mark wines you like best
  • Do call ahead to be sure your winery is open
  • Do check to make sure your picnic is allowed in the winery before you eat
  • Do bring water
  • Do dress appropriately, smart casual
  • Do have a designated driver
  • Do share what you like and what you don’t
  • Do ask questions

So When Are You Booking Your Trip?

If you hadn’t thought to add Long Island’s North Fork Wineries to your must-go list before, I hope I’ve convinced you!

It’s a newer region and still developing its techniques and unique character. But the terroir of the region is already so excellent and the classic characteristic of maritime notes are already present in their wines.

Sure, getting there is a bit of a trek, but it isn’t impossible. And the joys of Long Island wines await you when you do!

So next summer, take a day, or a weekend, or a week! You’ll soon find yourself falling in love with the North Fork’s coast vineyards.

Further read:

Kathryn Loveless

Kathryn Loveless is a freelance writer for hire who delights in all things delectable. You can find her perfecting a roast chicken recipe, hunting down a new bottle of scotch, or hosting a wine and cheese soirée somewhere in New York.

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