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.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Register Star Covers Regional Columibia-Greene-Berkshire Craft Beverage Summit

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Posted: Wednesday, September 10, 2014 12:30 am
GHENT - The Hudson-Chatham Winery hosted a summit of local wineries, breweries, distilleries and cideries on Tuesday to discuss working together to promote their industries in the Hudson Valley and beyond.
Representatives from over 20 local craft beverage companies were present in addition to a number of representatives from economic groups in Columbia and Greene counties. The event featured presentations on the craft beverage industry, a roundtable with all the producers and ended with a tasting of products provided by each producer.
Sam Filler, director of Industry Development at Empire State Development, who works closely with Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office, stated at the summit that the craft beverage business has spiked in New York state since Cuomo took office in 2011, with breweries growing from 70 to 165, wineries growing from 189 to 250 and distilleries growing from 15 to over 70 in that time.

He added that the recently passed Craft Act will allow breweries to sell their beer by the glass, as opposed to only farm breweries as was previously allowed, as well as increase the production cap to 75,000 barrels for breweries and 25,000 gallons for wineries.

“The governor’s intention is to minimize the regulations on this industry and make it easier for you to do business,” said Filler.

With the influx of new businesses, many are not aware of the opportunities available to them and the best way to promote their brand.

“There’s a whole bunch of us here who run these businesses and we don’t know each other,” said Carlo DeVito, co-owner of the Hudson-Chatham Winery. “If we don’t even know who each other are, how do people on the outside know who we are? That’s one of the biggest things that we need to do as a group is to make sure that we’re all pulling the train in the same direction, which is to get the word out on what it is we’re doing.”

DeVito suggested offering tastings and classes to get people interested in local craft beverages, approaching writers and critics to cover their events and cross-promoting with other similar businesses in the surrounding area. He also noted the different beverage trails and festivals that producers should take advantage of, which include the Hudson Berkshire Beverage Trail, Scawangunk Wine Trail, Hudson River Craft Beer Festival, Hudson Valley Wine & Food Festival and others around the region.

“One of the things that’s really important is that we promote each other,” he said. “In our tasting rooms, you should have the rack cards of some of your neighboring businesses. It’s about promoting each other. By banding together, we are stronger.”

According to Todd Erling, executive director of Hudson Valley Agribusiness, businesses should collaborate for mutual benefit. He said that it can be effective to partner with businesses that aren’t directly related.

“Think outside the box,” he said. “It’s not just wine, it’s not just beer, it’s not just cider. The amazing thing about the Hudson Valley is that it’s bread, it’s cheese. We have world-class and you pick the commodity sector or you pick what it is.”

One way craft beverage companies can do this, Erling said, is to share products.

“We’ve worked closely with this idea of collaboration, not so much teetering between what’s allowed and what isn’t, but products themselves,” he said. “So, a good example over in the Sullivan County area, we have a distillery that’s then giving their whiskey bales to a maple sugar house, the maple sugar house is making a bourbon aged maple syrup, then that barrel after the maple syrup has been made in it goes to a local brewery over there.”

Erling also spoke about the importance of bringing production back to New York state, exporting goods and incentivizing the purchase of products from New York. He said that this region is the “gatekeeper to a major market,” not only in New York City, but also in Boston and New England.
Kenneth Flood, commissioner of Columbia County Planning/Economic Development, and Warren Hart, director of Greene County Economic Development, Tourism and Planning, stressed the importance for small businesses in the region.

“Most of our work and time is spent on small business because that is where the jobs are, where the majority of most jobs are created,” Flood said.

Assemblywoman Didi Barrett (D-106) also attended the summit to show her support for local craft beverage producers.
“I’m a huge advocate of the economic potential of all the things we love about this region,” Barrett said. “Certainly, agriculture and food production is one of them, but it’s also the cultural history and the history itself. It’s so important that we use these things as the economic engines to be sure we have a sustainable economy here. What you all have been doing is so important and I am 100 percent behind you in every way that I possibly can.”
Additional organizations represented at the summit include Cave Mountain Brewery, Dutch’s Spirits, Beth’s Farm Kitchen, Hawthorne Valley Farm Store, Fix Brothers Fruit Farm, Old Klaverack Brewery, Orchard Hill Cider Mill, Hillrock Estate Distillery, Chatham Brewing, Sundog Cider, Hudson Valley Distillers, Brookview Station Winery, Grandpa Pete’s, Harvest Spirits, Wolfgang B. Gourmet Foods, Nine Pin Cider, Dutch Desserts, Tousey Winery and Greene County Chamber of Commerce.
To reach reporter Vince Pecoraro, call 518-828-1616, ext. 2309 or email

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