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

My Photo

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.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Hudson Valley Wows at the NY State Fair 2012 Wine Competition

The results of the New York State Fair Commercial Wine Competition are in, and the Hudson Valley took home 30 medals! We are thrilled. Second highest medal count after the wineries from the Finger Lakes. Not bad for a small little region like us. Congratulations to all the winners in the valley!!!

Hudson-Chatham Winery 2010 Baco Noir Casscels Vineyard Double Gold
Whitecliff Vineyard 2011 Traminette Gold

Baldwin Vineyards NV Embers Silver
Brimstone Hill Vineyard 2010 NYS Cabernet Franc Silver
Brimstone Hill Vineyard 2008 Vin Rouge Superior Silver
Brookview Station Winery NV The Porter's Port - Black Cherry Port Silver
Brotherhood Winery NV Brotherhood Cabernet Sauvignon Silver
Brotherhood Winery NV Sweet Lolly White Silver
Brotherhood Winery NV Sweet Lolly Red Silver
Brotherhood Winery NV Blanc de blancs Silver
El Paso Winery Inc. 2012 New York State Dusty Barn Silver
Hudson-Chatham Winery NV Paperbirch Cassis Silver
Hudson-Chatham Winery NV Paperbirch Raspberry Fine Ruby Silver
Palaia Vineyards NV Irene Silver
Tousey Winery 2010 Cabernet Franc Silver
Tousey Winery 2010 Queen of Clormont Silver
Whitecliff Vineyard 2011 Riesling Silver
Whitecliff Vineyard NV Red Trail Silver

Brimstone Hill Vineyard 2010 Hudson River Region Noiret Bronze
Brookview Station Winery NV The Conductor's Cassis - Black Current Bronze
Brookview Station Winery NV Whistle Stop White Semi Dry White Bronze
Brotherhood Winery NV Brotherhood Dry Riesling Bronze
Brotherhood Winery NV Brotherhood Riesling Bronze
Brotherhood Winery NV Brotherhood Pinot Noir Bronze
El Paso Winery Inc. 2011 NYS Merlot Bronze
Hudson-Chatham Winery 2010 Chelois Casscles Vineyard Bronze
Oak Summit Vineyard 2010 Oak Summit Pinot Noir Bronze
Palaia Vineyards 2007 Merlot Bronze
Palaia Vineyards 2008 Cab Franc Bronze
Palaia Vineyards NV Mead Honey Wine Bronze
Tousey Winery 2010 Pinto Noir Bronze

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Steven Kolpan Recommends Hudson Valley Noirs!

James Beard award winning wine expert Steven Kolpan recently wrote an article in the June-August 2012 issue of Valley Table magazine entitled "Warm Wheather Reds: Chill Out," extolling the virtues of Pinot Noir from around the world.

In the article Kolpan recommended wines form the Hudson Valley:

"For a good local/aternative choice, look for Hudson Valley Pinot Noir produced by Millbrook, Robibero, Oak Summitt, Bashakill; Chelois from Hudson-Chatham, Genoa produced by Cereghino-Smith."

Great news for those buying Hudson Valley wine this summer and all year round!

Read more at:

and congrats to publishers Jerry and Janet!

New Hudson Valley Wine magazine Summer 2012 Issue is Out!

Linda and Bob have done it again! One of the best issues ever! Super pieces on green wineries, wine blends, winding a whey, wine friendly farm markets, and more!

Fantastic contribnutors...possibly the best list of writers ever. Steve Casscles. Joyanne Colwell. Wendy Crispell. Michael Taiani. Kathleen Wilson. Fantastic line up!

Pick up a copy in the tasting room today!

Read more at:

The Zweigelt Project

The Zweigelt Project is an experiment which began in 2008 – by neophyte grape growers Bob Bedford and Linda Pierro, publishers of Hudson Valley Wine Magazine; and Paula Cereghino and Fred Smith of Cereghino Smith, award-winning Hudson Valley artisanal winemakers – to answer a simple question:

Can Zweigelt be successfully grown and produced in the Hudson Valley?

Why Zweigelt?

Well, Zweigelt is one of Austria’s most widely-planted red grape varieties– a crossing of the more well-known Blaufrankish and St. Laurent. It is widely grown throughout Austria, where it was developed – it has high yields, is adaptable to cold-weather conditions and is relatively resistant to disease. And importantly, it buds late, and ripens early – just perfect for the limited growing season in the Hudson Valley. The result is a full-flavored and well-structured grape that produces light to medium-bodied wines, with deep red color, gentle tannins, and spicy, red plum/red cherry and black pepper tastes, with a Barbera-like acidity. Because almost three-quarters of Austria’s total wine production is consumed locally, very little Zweigelt makes its way to the U.S. We think that’s a shame.

Why here, Why now?

1) We live, breathe and work in the Hudson Valley. 2) The climate here resembles that of some of the regions in Austria where Zweigelt is grown and thrives. 3) The first crop of Zweigelt from our vines planted in 2008 in our experimental vineyard in Greene County produced an unexpected and promising harvest in 2010, and 4) Cereghino Smith crafted a luscious fruit-forward, low-tannin, small-batch wine from these grapes that we know we want more of, and we think you’ll love. But more on that later.

What is the Zweigelt Project?

Was the 2010 harvest a fluke? Will our vines continue to thrive in the Hudson Valley, and produce healthy yields? Does the wine have aging ability?

We invite you to follow our progress in the vineyard and in the wine cellar, watch as we toil to plant more vines, grow and harvest the grapes, and craft and bottle our own Hudson Valley Zweigelt wine. And with the dearth of information available this side of the world, there’ll be a lot of experimenting going on. In between all the hard work, we’ll share photos, stories and tasting notes as we delve further into the mysterious, little-known Zweigelt grape and the potential of growing and producing Zweigelt here in the Hudson Valley, and in the U.S.

And that, simply, is the Zweigelt Project.

Read more at:

Friday, June 15, 2012

Chatham Brewing Named Best Craft Beer Brewery in Hudson Valley

On April 28, 2012, Chatham Brewing LLC won the 2012 Matthew Vassar Brewers’ Cup for the Best Craft Beer Brewery in the Hudson Valley at TAP New York, the state’s largest craft beer festival and competition that is held every year at Hunter Mountain in the Catskills. Chatham Brewing LLC is located in Chatham, NY and is the only brewery in Columbia County, NY.

The highly coveted award recognizes the Hudson Valley’s craft beer brewery with the best overall mix of beer styles. Over 50 breweries across the state entered the competition. Like Chatham Brewing, all of them hand make their beer in small batches using high quality malts and hops to achieve a unique and flavorful beer that elicits a “craft brewed” status. This careful process is preferred over the more mass produced route that uses adjuncts and fillers like corn and rice to get beer on the shelf as quickly as possible.

Jake Cunningham and Tom Crowell have been making Chatham Brew since 2007. Like most craft brewers, they started out brewing to sooth their own palate and enjoy the camaraderie of brewing quality beer. As they’ve grown they have developed a dedicated following. “We are thrilled to receive this award. Chatham Brewing has a very supportive following in Columbia County, the Hudson Valley, NYC and beyond. We’re looking forward to increasing our production, our offerings and our distribution so that more people can get a taste of award winning beers from Chatham Brewing,” said Jake Cunningham, co-owner of the brewery.

“Credit for this really goes to our Brewer, Matt Perry,” added Crowell. “Matt takes traditional styles and puts a unique twist on them, making some of the most drinkable beers you will find anywhere. And if you can’t find them at your favorite pub, be sure to ask for them!”

Cunningham and Crowell own and operate Chatham Brewing on Main Street in Chatham, New York. The Brewery is one of the most popular stops along the Hudson Berkshire Beverage Trail. Their handcrafted beers can be found in dozens of restaurants in New York City and upstate New York. The brewery offers a range of seasonal and ongoing favorites including their Amber Ale, 8 Barrel Ale, Golden, IPA, Scotch Ale, OC Blonde Ale, Porter, and Maple Amber. Beer is brewed fresh daily and can be purchased on Saturdays from 11 am to 5 pm in kegs ranging in size from 3 to 15.5 gallons, and 64 ounce (1/2 gallon) growlers. Later this summer, they will begin bottling some of their premium styles: a Bourbon Barrel aged Brown Ale and the Belgian Tripel in 22 ounce bottles. Chatham Brewing will also be at many of the area’s farmers markets this summer.

For more information on Chatham Brewing, contact co-owners Jake Cunningham at or Tom Crowell at or visit their website. If you have a beer emergency, call them at (518) 697-0202.

Captain Lawrence Freshchester Pale Ale

If you really want to know anything about Captain Lawrence Brewing, it all start with two things: Scott Vacarro and the Vacarro family (thatincludes friends and family members). That's what it's all about.

Scott began brewing beer at the ripe old age of 17, and hasn’t looked back since. A graduate of UC Davis Fermentation Science program, Scott has been fortunate to mix the practical knowledge gained from years of home brewing with 4 years of brewing education.

This is a small, well run, smart, and incredibly tasty little brewery in the southern Hudson Valley. Their beers are awesome.

I was recently at the Union Square Cafe where I had the IPA.

This Pale Ale was one of the first beers Scott brewed after moving out to California to begin his brewing education. This version is a true testament to the influences the Wild West had on his early brewing. His Pale Ale is loaded with US-grown Cascade, Crystal, and Columbus hops, so be sure to take a good sniff to enjoy their robust aromas before taking your first sip.

As promised in their copy, this is an aromatic beer with notes of citrus, pine, a noticeable bitterness, and a touch of malty backbone to help balance it out.

I had it with grilled peached wrapped in was fantastic!

Hops: Columbus, Cascade, Crystal
Malts: Domestic 2-row, English Crystal Malt
IBU: 35
OG: 14 Plato
Type of Glass: Other

An awesome beer. Congrats, Scott!

Friday, June 08, 2012

Sommelier Journal Raves About the Hudson Valley

In the May 31, 2012 issue of Sommelier Journal, Patricia Savoie raves about Hudson Valley wine.

In the issue, Savoie recounts the geography, history, and current landscape of Hudson Valley wine.

soils deposited by the receding glaciers contain shale, slate, schist, and limestone, lending a distinct minerality to many of the wines. The cool conditions result in high acidity and relatively moderate alcohol levels (usually 12-13%), making Hudson Valley wines ideal for drinking with meals.

Benmarl, Brotherhood, Clinton, Hudson-Chatham, Millbrook, Oak Summitt, Stoutridge, and Whitecliff are all highlighted.

The body of the article places the wineries and the wines in context. But the reviews of the wines are flat out wonderful!

You can buy the full four page article at:

Congrats to everyone involved!