I had the pleasure to visit the Tug Hill Vineyard on a beautiful fall day. We enjoyed their packed Sunday brunch, with beautiful views of fall foliage and farmland. Then, we headed down to the tasting room to sample their wines. The Tug Hill Vineyard is located outside of Lowville, NY on the Tug Hill Plateau, which is an area known for its heavy snowfall, not as a wine region. They do give a nod to this winter notoriety with some of their wine names such as White Out, Lake Effect, and Black Ice.
To combat their extreme winters, this vineyard has planted 10 varieties of French-American hybrid vines that were developed at the University of Minnesota, which has done extensive research to develop cold-hardy grapes. I was particularly taken with the Marquette, which made a very easy-drinking, medium bodied red. We picked up a bottle to take home, and it paired wonderfully with a pizza.
Here are my notes...
Producer: Tug Hill Vineyard
Region: New York State
Grape Varieties: Marquette
Overall Rating: ★★★★☆
Pairing: New York Style Pizza from Nick's Pizza.
Scent: Cherry and Spice
Flavors: Cherry and Spice, plus some black pepper and berry
Finish: Medium (4-5 sec)