EP 978 Finger Lakes Wine Tasting

Gary Vaynerchuk tastes 3 interesting wines from the Finger Lakes of New York. This is a winemaking region that Gary feels doesn’t get enough respect and wants to shed more light on.

Wines tasted in this episode:

2008 Herman Wiemer Semi Dry RieslingNew York Riesling
2008 Dr. Konstantin Frank RkatsiteliNew York White Meritage
2008 Ravines Riesling DryNew York Riesling

Links mentioned in todays episode.

Latest Comment:

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luca bercelli


Lines of the day – ‘Pass overall but on a nerd level…a must try’ and ‘Smells like happy hugs’

Absolutely hilarious story about when GV was young and driving with his family. Grandma used to insist in pulling over whenever she saw ‘Root St John’ (Zlitaboy?) so they could stuff bags full of it.

Tags: Finger Lake, new york state, review, Video, white, wine, wines

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  • Anonymous

    You going soft on us Allan?????? 😮

  • Anonymous

    You have intimate knowledge of Melbas Bra? How is it? What does it look like? ;o


    Soft is the new hard

  • Anonymous

    Yo G, the Hooouse is BLOW’N UP Yo! Where are all these lurkers com’n from??? ;-P

  • Anonymous

    Well, let’s say it’s not unpleasant 🙂

  • Love the story about the St. John’s Wort. Urine? Really?

    QOTD: Other than my wife (LI), I love Manhattan for its diverse cuisine, culture, and craft beer, fine wine, spirits and dining. I also do love the Hudson River Valley and Niagara…so scenic. Cooperstown was also a blast.

  • Anonymous

    Have you tried firfox? email Mott!

  • Anonymous

    GV, I just commented on one of last weeks shows that you need to get out the North Fork of Finger Lakes regions for some NY love. I can’t wait till they abandon the gimic tourist wine blends and hybrid grape programs in the finger lakes and go all in on grapes that work there.

    Also, love the weed-picking story, classic. And the happy hugs, what the heck is that?

    QOTD – I love the quality improvements that have happened in NYS wines over the past 10 years. I went to school in the finger lakes, and they’ve come a long way in the recent past. Agree that, as the prices come down, they rivial $15-20 Riesling for anywhere.

    As for NY, the whole thing is my favorite… born and bred New Yorker. The best city in the world, the most beautiful countryside in the world. Family and friends are also great. And, of course, they Yankees.

  • Anonymous

    One more thing… GV, I think you’re getting on a roll over the past few weeks. Mott, don’t you agree?

  • My favorite thing about New York state is hip hop.
    I can’t say i’ve had a single wine from New York… have to fix that.
    This is probably one of the most disgusting episodes I’ve seen in a while. Piss fingers, leaving hair on deodorant. All it was missing was sheep’s butt.

  • Hell yeah! Completely agree with your answer.

  • Anonymous

    So glad to see US wines coming in at fair prices. I like looking for non-West Coast wines, but I have trouble pulling the trigger for a $30 Pennsylvania Merlot. $15 NYS Riesling? Absolutely.

    QOTD: Southern Tier Highway (RT 17)

  • Anonymous

    I don’t have the time to go through all the comments so I don’t know if someone already mentioned this or not but the plant you are thinking of is probably St. John’s Wort. It is available in most health food and vitamin stores and has many reputed uses. I love rieslings in general and have enjoyed a few NY examples from the “ice wine” category.

  • QOTD: My kids were born there. 🙂

  • Anonymous

    QOTD=this one is easy—-My beautiful girl from Saratoga, NY.

  • Anonymous

    If the “root” you are talking about is St John’s wort it has many medicinal uses. Take a look here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St_John's_wort

    Its most common use in the treatment of depression where it is thought to act as a monoamine oxidase inhibitor. It is on the well respected natural pharmacopoeia of Germany. However, because it interacts with so many other medications and foods, its use is not really recommended in most cases.

    QOTD-My father-in-law comes from there. He’s a great guy!

  • RobinC

    The Opera scene in Belgium sounds interesting, and you get the Met HD
    productions if you’re interested in Opera. New York City is certainly a great
    city, but you’re so close to France – or is France sort of ho hum to

    In a message dated 2/2/2011 1:44:32 A.M. Mountain Standard Time,

    MarcBelgium wrote, in response to RobinC:

    Great, you go to the Met.
    I would be very happy if I could say the same but since I live in Belgium
    ….. you know.

    Link to comment: http://disq.us/10zkhq

  • Anonymous

    Another good episode. Have not been a big fan of most Rieslings, but have really enjoyed the Alsace version, Trimbach, 2008, a much drier Riesling. As usual will look for these when possible.

    QOTD – Having never been to New York, I am a disadvantage but would probably list one of my 22 caliber rifles as it was made by Ithica which was based in New York. It is not so much the rifle but the story that goes with it.pa

  • Anonymous

    NY Reislings – never tried, but would definitely if i get the chance. gotta love trying for the “geek factor” of expanding exposure.

    QOTD – the spirit of the people

  • QOTD – Lake Placid (Whiteface)

  • Anonymous

    Finger Lakes region does a great job on whites and some reds as well. If you decide to tape some shows in the region, I love to come over from CT and join you “on tour” !!

  • Don Simpson

    I loved the story about picking the weeds. Also, Secret deoderant and smells like happy hugs was classic!

    QOTD: My favorite part about NY state was a good friend’s wedding at Lake Skaneateles. Just gorgeous country up there… Had a few rieslings that I enjoyed quite a bit. I am a fan of the dry rieslings from that area, especially for the QPR. Would like to go back for a long weekend to check out the wineries.

  • Anonymous

    Solid show. I will have to try some of these. Great story about picking weeds but T.M.I. with the urine on the hands… 🙂

    Lets also clear up one thing….THE JETS ARE NOT A NEW YORK TEAM. They lost this title when they decided to move to New Jersey. They should just be known as “The Jets”.

    QOTD – Favorite part of New York? All of it. It’s so diversified.

  • Red Shouldered Hawk

    I love the pizza by the slice in Manhattan. Pizza by the slice elsewhere doesn’t compare. Why in the world is that?

  • Anonymous

    Interesting show. HAVE had a few Rkatsitelis in the Republic of Georgia and the acidity is generally not pervasive. Nor are these wines particularly interesting, mostly because the sugar levels are so high in most of these Georgian-style wines. I would recommend Georgian Mtsvane and Tsitskam over these if you are looking for some better acid.

    QOTD: Driving through the Hudson Valley up in the Berkshires.

  • Randall

    QOTD: NY= The center of the universe for JAZZ!!

    p.s. I have plenty of rels in and/or from upstate and I also love visiting the City…

  • Anonymous

    QOTD – Windham ski resort. Learned to ski there when I was 2, and went back every year with my parents. Some great memories. I don’t have too much experience with NY state wine, but I really like searching for quality wine from the “Other 46.” So far have just explored some virginia and maryland wineries. Most are bad-just ok, but there are a few gems.

  • Randall


  • Randall

    For my tastes, ALL of the Cantillion line is more than ok with me. A beer appreciation club I hang out with just did a ‘sours/krieks/lambics/gueuze’ blow-out tasting with food pairings. We all brought aged and fresh beers from these styles and several aged Cantillions were among the selections. Wow! What a day that was… We even had a young woman from Shang-Hai there, marveling at the crazy, beer-loving Americans. Big fun… she even liked some of the krieks… 🙂

  • I’ll give it a try, I’ll let you know. thanks

  • QOTD – Lake George and the Upstate New York Region. 1986 worked at an all sports camp in little Brant Lake, New York. Fantastic location, quiet little town. We”ll be giving the Finger Lakes Region Rieslings a try this weekend.

  • Thumbs up for the daks!

  • Dr. Frank has done right by us…
    A 1976 family trip through the Finger Lakes, when I was a kid, was an important factor in early onset of the wine bug…wondered for years why we did not have vineyards on the west coast of Lake Champlain…30 years later, it’s starting.
    QOTD: Essex County

  • Anonymous

    Diversity.. examples the food and women of Manhattan.

  • Anonymous

    I have to say that I really was not interested in the Finger Lakes wines until last September when my wife and I and another couple went on a long weekend road trip from the Cleveland, OH area to the region. We stayed at a decent B&B (there are a LOT of them there already and room for more) and toured wineries around Keuka and Seneca Lakes and we had a GREAT time. The wines were, by and large, very good and well made. I especially liked the following wineries:

    Dr. Konstantin Frank
    Red Newt
    Lamoreux Landing
    H. J. Wiemer
    Anthony Road
    Fox Run

    For dining, I highly recommend Red Newt Bistro and Stonecat Cafe. Excellent cuisine and local wines as well. Frankly, while the white wines were very good, I was impressed with the quality of their red wines, especially the Pinot Noir and the Cabernet Franc and I highly recommend trying them as well as the Riesling and Gewurztraminer. If you have an iPhone, the Finger Lakes Wine Country App is pretty cool as well.

    QOTD: Yes, I have had Finger Lakes Riesling (obviously) and I would have to say that the Finger Lakes are now my favorite thing about NY State (although I also love the Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, NY). Watkins Glen is way cool for hiking as well.

  • Okay, growing up on Niagara Escarpment wine I’ve always known of the potential of the micro climates around the Great Lakes and as well as the influence of the Finger Lakes. I haven’t had any wine from the Finger Lakes region in New York because when I have visited, I wasn’t of age but also I haven’t had an opportunity to try any wine from the Finger Lakes region at my own wine shop 🙁 This does prompt my wish to go visit the region again and try some wine.

  • Anonymous

    QOTD: As a born and raised Masshole, I always kind of hated on NY, but my beautiful wife got me to move dpwn here. I have lived in the Hudson Valley for 11 years and it is a beautiful place. One spot I love is te Bear Mountain Bridge. Been to the finger lakes, but not for wine tasting, but have had probably 5 or 6 rieslings from there and totally agree. They make very solid wine. Oh, and if you ever get the chance to eat at Blue Hill at Stone Barns near sleepy hollow, check it out. Amazing (albeit, expensive) dining experience.

  • Anonymous

    Oh and I forgot to mention that I will always love Game 7 2004 even if I was just watching on tv in my apartment in croton, ny. That was hands down my favorite sports moment of my life.

  • Anonymous

    My favourite thing about New York State? That there is SO MUCH in it. You have New York City and little Ballston Spa, you have the Adirondacks and the largest state park. There is old graciousness that’s almost southern in a place like Saratoga Springs. You have Lake George, where I spent so many summers in my childhood. There’s the Hudson River and its mansions, and West Point excellence. There’s dinky little places with unglamourous names like Binghampton, which are actually beautiful. There are the unique Finger Lakes, there is wine growing (and not just there), and there is Long Island ans all the Hamptons. New York is a lot of places, and it’s close to where I live.

    Daria K

  • Anonymous

    I think of NY as somewhat the “Texas” of the Northeast…everything is done big! NYC (say no more.) Driving across Upstate (feels endless-likes it’s own country.) Adirondacks (gorgeous.) Finger Lakes (also gorgeous.) Niagra Falls (crazy!) You get the idea…it’s all BIG TIME. And I share this thought from quited LITTLE Connecticut!

  • Just wish we could get anything decent up here from Finger Lakes!!

  • Anonymous

    Gary, you were extra high-larious and on point in this episode. Loved the st johns wort story and your different pronunciations of the rkatseli(?) wine!

    Qotd: All my memories of growing up in ct and going into city with my dad or family to eat or go to work with him, eating at grand central station oyster bar, gong to see the thanksgiving parade, seeing cats 2 times etc….

  • Gary…I.LOVE.NY.FINGER.LAKES.WINE. Visited from NC this summer. Agree that the wines get little play outside of area. Can’t really find by new NY Riesling love down here. Wish it had better distribution. Visited a lot of vineyards on Seneca and Keuka. Loved Ravines for reasons other than their wine…how ’bout local chocolate pairing?!

    Brought back to NC, >a case of wine. Had fun getting through bag check…but did it.

    Thanks for the good reviews. Keep up the good work.

  • laurensNL

    Nice show!

    QOTD: never been to NY but it’s on my list. Maybe make a stop a the WL ;).

  • Born and raised in Ithaca area. Been wine tasting 3 time around Cayuga and Seneca lakes but never been up to Keuka lake where the Dr Konstantin and Ravines are from. There, now I’m no longer a lurker 😉

  • Anonymous

    QOTD: Brooklyn Brewery and Garret Oliver!!

  • Anonymous

    Glad you focused on a lesser known wine region. I remember being favorably impressed by Finger Lakes wines, but it has been a while since I have had one. I guess I need to seek some out, if they have them in Georgia.

  • Ryan Richards

    QOTD: Love the Adirondacks, absolutely beautiful.

  • QOTD: Never been to NY state, so I all I know/hear about is NYC, Statue Of Liberty, and through a few bollywood movies… the Central Park and the Grand Central Station.

  • So excited to see the Ravines on the show—it’s a great house wine.


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