Hudson River Valley Wineries

This blog is dedicated to news, events, profiles and reviews of fine food and wine in the Hudson River Valley. We especially feature and spotlight the burgeoning wineries of the Hudson River Region. We accept and will relay information about releases, events, festivals and any toher happening related to food and wine in the Hudson River Valley. Send pertitnent information to

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Carlo DeVito is a long time wine lover, and author of books and magazine articles. He is the author of Wineries of the East Coast. He has traveled to wine regions in California, Canada, up and down the east coast, France, Spain and Chile. He has been a published executive for more than 20 years. He shepherded the wine book program of Wine Spectator as well as worked with Kevin Zraly, Oz Clarke, Matt Kramer, Tom Stevenson, Evan Dawson, Greg Moore, Howard Goldberg, and many other wine writers. He has also published Salvatore Calabrese, Jim Meehan, Clay Risen, and Paul Knorr. Mr. DeVito is the inventor of the mini-kit which has sold more than 100,000,000 copies world wide. He has also publisher such writers as Stephen Hawking, E. O Wilson, Philip Caputo, Gilbert King, James McPherson, John and Mary Gribbin, Thomas Hoving, David Margolick, Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr., John Edgar Wideman, Stanley Crouch, Dan Rather, Dee Brown, Susie Bright, and Eleanor Clift. He is also the owner of Hudson-Chatham Winery, co-founder of the Hudson Berkshire Beverage Trail, and president of the Hudson Valley Wine Country.

Thursday, December 29, 2011


Chef Marcus Guiliano of Aroma Thyme does a tasting at Millbrook Vineyards.


Marcus Guiliano owns Aroma Tyme Bistro

Chef Marcus Guiliano has accumulated an impressive culinary resume on his path to opening Aroma Thyme Bistro. Marcus and his wife Jamie opened New Years Eve, 2003.

Guiliano began his career in 1990 as a cook in up-state New York at various hotels and restaurants like the Depuy Canal House. With an objective of cooking great food Guiliano set out and worked for Mobil Five Star properties like the Greenbrier and the Broadmoor. He had the honor to work for Pierre Koffman at La Tante Claire in Europe, which at the time was on the top 25 French restaurants in the world. Guiliano has since been the Executive Chef of prestigious Country Clubs and now his latest venture, Aroma Thyme Bistro.

"All this experience taught me how to cook great tasting food which was slowly killing me", says Guiliano. "About four years ago the discovery of holistic cuisine changed my life." Now the quest came to marry gourmet five star cuisine with holistic cuisine.

Essential Oils and cooking: Aroma Thyme Bistro is 100% committed to using only Young Living Oils for everything from cleaning, diffusing and of course cooking/seasoning.

Guiliano has received many culinary awards including presenting at The James Beard Foundation. His latest accomplishments are formulating published recipes for Gary Null in such books at "Power Aging", "Seven Step Series", and others.

Marcus lives in Ellenville, New York with his wife Jamie and two children Justin and Courtney.

Marcus has his own channel on You Tube, and has done several videos on Hudson Valley wine. Here's his take on Bashakill Vineyards.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Meet Winemakers from Cereghino-Smith at CIA January 12, 2012

Meet the Winemaker: Cereghino Smith Winery
Thursday, January 12 @ 6 p.m.
Course No. 800–MTW
In the tradition of the Old World négociants, the winemakers at Cereghino Smith select and source grapes from small estate growers in both California and New York to create bold, full-bodied wines that are filtered by time and gravity. Paula Cereghino and Fred Smith were inspired by renegade winemakers like the Super Tuscan producers of Italy and the Rhône Rangers of the West Coast—including Joseph Cereghino, Paula's grandfather. After the presentation and tasting at the Danny Kaye Theatre, you'll enjoy a delicious meal designed to highlight Cereghino
Smith wines at the American Bounty Restaurant. $65.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Ale Street News Highlights Hudson Valley Beer

In the December-January 2011 issue of Ale Street News, writer Mark A. Marnell highlights what's going on in Hudson Valley brewing.

Breweris covered include:
Kegan Ales
Brown's Brewing
CH Evans Brewing Co.
Crossroads Brewing Co.
Adirondack Pub and Brewery
Cave Mountain Brewing
Hyde Park Brewing Co.
Chatham Brewing
Gilded Otter

Matt Perry of Chatham Brewing was featured in the article, hard at work in the brewery. Congrats Matt!

And congrats to all the breweries in the Hudson Valley!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Details magazine Names Core Vodka one of the Best New Artisanal Vodkas

Core Vodka was named one the seven best artisanal vodkas on the market by Details magazine in the December 2011 issue of the magazine.

Author Rob Willey wrote about Core: " Triple-distilled at an orchard, Core is made from apples chosen for precise sugar levels, lending a mellow sweetness tinged with ginger."

Congrats to everyone over at Harvest Spirits!

Read more at:

Happy Bitch Wines Mentioned in the New York Times

William Grimes recently wrote a fascinating article on the whys and wherefores of naming wines with the word "Bitch" attached. Mentioned in the article is the Hudson Valley's own "Happy Bitch" wine.

Congrats to Debbie Gioquindo and Keryl Pesce!

Read the whole thing at:

Friday, December 16, 2011

Hudson Berkshire Beverage Trail Winter Passport Savings!

Save $5.00 thru Dec 31st, 2011!!! Buy before December 31st and passports are valid until February 29th, 2012!

Regualary $25.00 now only $20.00!

Take advantage of our group rate, and book a tour of six or more and tickets are $15 – save $10.00 per ticket!

A great present to set under the tree! A great gift!!!

Here's the link to savings!!!!

Saturday, December 10, 2011


Edible Hudson Valley writer Jennifer Brizzi covers the absolutely growing industry of artisanally produced cassis (black currant dessert wine) in the Hudson Valley.

This is a great article with lots of really fun information and great profiles.

If you're looking for great cassis try some of these:

Adair Vineyards
Bookview Station Winery
Clinton Vineyards
Glorie Farm Winery
Hudson-Chatham Winery
Tousey Winery
Tuthilltown Distillery
Warwick Valley Winery
and coming soon, Breezey Hill

Go out and try some today!

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Happy Bitch - The Book and the Wines - A Lifetyle Brand

Happy Bitch is an excellent example of cross promotion and brand building. You can buy the book, the ebook, the wine, the glasses, and the t-shirts.Keryl Pesce and Debbie Gioquindo have developed Happy Bitch into a lifestyle brand they will continue to expand.

Cheryl Pesce wrote a book called Happy Bitch: The Girlfriend's Straight Up Guide to Losing the Baggage and Finding the Fun, Fabulous You Inside...

The Amazon description says: "Have you ever wondered why some women are miserable bitches and others are happy bitches? The answers might surprise you. Join Keryl Pesce as she shares her newfound perspective and strength following a painful divorce. Follow along and learn how regardless of your baggage, you too can transform your life from one of heartache and struggle to one of peace and lasting happiness. Imagine being freed from regrets of the past and worries about the future. Yes! It is possible! The truth is, it's easier than you think. You already hold the secret to happiness in your hands right this very moment."

The $15.60 paperback and the $9.95 ebook are both available at The paperback is also available at Barnes & for $13.40.

As the recent Pride of New York festival at the Saratoga Springs Art Center, festival goers could been seen sporting stickers featuring the Happy Bitch logo. Some were sporting t-shirts as well. The brand seems to be resonating with women. Certainly, this is not the first wine to use the word "Bitch" on it's label. Still, the rolling out of other products with some savvy marketing behidn it has catapulted the brand forward extremely quickly, and is an example to follow for any small winery.
The brand has used a combination of twitter, facebook, and solid internet buss from blogs and newspapers to build up a following quickly. The winemakers also used several yearly events in the Hudson Valley this past season as promotional opportunities to create brand awareness (like getting folks at one festival to taste several different versions of the wine), and allowing or inviting the public to particpate in the final blend or flavor profile. Several local winemakers questioned the move, but more than anything, it was smart, invented marketing.

The wine itself is a no lose proposition - a pink, sparkling wine, with just the lightest whiff of sweetness, much like a prosecco. It's fun, pink, and goes down easy. It's well made and well packaged, and looks great in almost any wine glass, especially a sparkling wine flute.
Happy Bitch can already be found in numerous wine shops up-and-down the valley, and has quickly created a buzz with a strong female base of devoted customers. The wines can already be found in five counties. They've done all of that in year. It's just the kind of marketing smarts the Hudson Valley and the east coast need. And it's the fun wine consumers want!

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Visit Vortex Celebrates Hudson ValleyHoliday Spirits

Visit Vortex magazine's Winter 2011 issue features five pages of fun and festive cocktails, punches and eggnog all made with Hudson Valley spirits. From distilled spirits, to table wines, and dessert wines, theres all kinds of fun recipes to make your holidays unique and fabulous.

Read more at:

Thursday, December 01, 2011

What Brotherhood’s Expansion Means to the Hudson Valley

Bigger is not always better. I can think of a lot of wines that I truly love; I’m one of those jerks who loves a hard to find wine. The easier it is to find, the less attracted I am to it. I also loved women who played hard to get back in the day, as they say.

But let’s be honest – sometimes size matters. Back in California, in the late 1960s and early 1970s, there were a lot of small wineries making quality wine. But my mom and dad, who were avid wine drinkers, had never heard of them. And despite the Judgment of Paris, and the eyebrow-raising wins of Chateau Montelena and Stag’s Leap in competitions, most people didn’t know what was going on in California wine. That was until Robert Mondavi.

Mondavi had cashed out of his family’s rather sizable and profitable winery, and wanted to create a new winery – a large winery that could make quality wines. While the Stag’s Leaps and Montelena’s of the world worked the critics, Mondavi moved an industry. He became the ambassador of California wine. His winery was originally thought of as a folly, with its massive scale and his exclamation point on quality dry wines.

In fact, Mondavi’s gamble paid off, not just for him, but for all of Napa. Today, Mondavi is one of the first tours I recommend to anyone who wants to go see wineries and vineyards for the first time – because it remains the best tour for the general public in the industry. It is the show place for quality Napa wine.

The Hudson Valley has always needed a Mondavi. Cesar Baeza has always been one of our best ambassadors. But with the fire that ruined the winery some time ago, he has been fighting the good fight with one arm tied behind his back. But with the official unveiling of what has been transpiring over the last 12-24 months, Brotherhood, America’s oldest winery, in Washingtonville, NY, is set to dominate the Hudson Valley landscape for the next century.

There is a lot of expansion going on up and down the valley. And it all symbolizes a vibrant and growing wine industry. Brotherhood, Whitecliff, Tousey, Hudson-Chatham are all expanding. After a disastrous fire, Millbrook also used the tragedy to also expand. This kind of invest by the local banking community signifies a confidence few New York industries can boast of. And many of the valley’s wineries are making more wine than ever.

But Brotherhood’s new facilities are a shining beacon in the Hudson Valley, confirming it once again as one of the flagship wineries of the valley.

Firstly, they have the largest tastingrooom in the valley. And it is richly appointed. The grand hall, in use last night at the unveiling of the reconstructed winery, was festooned in all its glory, and flexed its prowess as one of the grandest wine spaces in all of the valley. It was chock full of people - press, wine industry executives, and many Manhattanites up from the city’s wine industry come to take a look at the grand dame’s new charms.

Secondly, they have the largest and most richly appointed banquet hall of any winery in the valley. It was shown off for the very first time last night. The fieldstone walls, at least 2 ½ stories high, are pebbled with large, round, smooth river stones, that give texture to the massive room, which is tied together by gigantic wooden beams (giant tree trunks really), and lit by wrought-iron and barrel stave chandeliers. It is a stunning room, which also has a large, and sumptuous stone patio outside (with the same footprint as the hall) to accommodate even larger parties.

Outside, the guest house/inn is at the end of the complex. And of course, there’s the incredible restaurant, Vinum, there within the friendly confines of the compound as well.

But while all this bling is in fact important, the most impressive thing is the new winemaking facilities. With a giant phallanx of four-story stainless steel tanks, Brotherhood, which already had incredible capacity for any winery, suddenly catapults itself into a whole new realm. The new wing of the winery holds hundreds of thousands of gallons. And the tanks are full!! Brotherhood is now, without question, one of the largest wineries on the east coast – bar none. I have traveled to California, Spain, France, Chile and many other places. This might not be Ernest and Julio or Campo Viejo, but trust me, it’s big. Very big!

But even so, CEO Baeza is also rich in talent, with a team who has grown into a formidable force. Hernan Dosono is the president, who has spent many grueling, long hours overseeing the details of this magnificent expansion. Winemaker Bob Barrow (who has definitely grown into his job after nine years working under Baeza) is up to the challenge, especially with experienced wine veteran Mark Diagle as the winery manager. And of course there’s Brotherhood’s ubiquitous and charming marketing manager Colleen Hughes, who seems to be everywhere at once. She and Baeza are constant ambassadors for the Valley. Working in New York City as I do, I see many industry leaders during my time there. It is not uncommon to see Baeza at a national or international industry wine tasting dominated by other states or countries, or to see him in the offices of the industry’s magazine offices.

And Brotherhood wines are everywhere. They have the widest distribution of any Valley winery. Heck, they have some of the widest distribution of any New York state winery. No matter if I am in Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, where ever, there always a bottle of Brotherhood somewhere on the shelves. That is the most important ambassador – with great power, goes great responsibility.

And for anyone who’s thinking – what’s this all about? Where did all this money come from? We’re talking millions of dollars. That’s a great question. The first sign of a region on the rise is investment of foreign capital. Brotherhood’s ownership group is backed by Chilean capital – and not some uninformed group – but by substantial people in the Chilean wine business. This is another reason why Brotherhood’s expansion is such an important signpost in the valley’s growth. Where else in New York state has foreign investment been so substantial? Nowhere else but the Hudson Valley.

Like Mondavi did more than 40 years ago in Napa, Cesar Baeza, along with his team, have created an incredible new winery wonderland, with magnificent halls, new wine making facilities, an incredible restaurant, and a stellar new winemaking facility. The Hudson Valley now has the crown jewel it rightly deserves, and the richly appointed ambassador it needs to represent the valley. Both valley winemakers and Valley consumers, should be thrilled with what is happening in Washingtonville, NY.

Congratulations Brotherhood! Congratulations Hudson Valley!