Finger Lakes' Top Wineries


Updated: 09/3/2015

On a quest to discover the Finger Lakes' best wineries, we have visited and reviewed more than thirty Finger Lakes wineries during the last two years. The wineries listed below received our independent reviewers', and our users', highest ratings and are, in our opinion, the Finger Lakes' premier wine tasting destinations. The visitor ratings are divided into three sections: overall experience, service, and view/ambiance.

In addition to receiving accolades from visitors, Finger Lakes wineries continue to receive high scores for their wines from professional wine critics. The second section of this article lists the Finger Lakes wineries that have produced the state's highest rated and most awarded wines over the last several vintages.

Highest Rated Finger Lakes Wineries


Overall Experience (map view)


Cayuga Ridge Estate Winery

The tasting begins with the dry white wines, then transitions to the dry reds, and ends with the sweet wines. Six pours, which is about half the tasting menu, costs only $2. The staff is friendly, chatty and knowledgeable, sharing information about the science of wine making as they pour. They are honest with their recommendations, gracefully steering you towards the wines they consider to be standouts or that might appeal to your tastes. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Fox Run Vineyards

Perched high above one of the deepest parts of Seneca Lake, Fox Run’s winery is surrounded by vineyards of Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot Noir, and Cabernet Franc and offers beautiful views...Fox Run is one of the wineries really at the forefront of developing the region’s reputation as a world-class wine region. ~Jessica Helper
(Review | Profile | Website)

Kemmeter Wines

While at Kemmeter, I had such a beautiful experience tasting with Reinhardt. There's nothing more personally satisfying than tasting with the winemaker and experiencing his dream realized in each bottle of wine. When you visit, you will taste wines with him and realize you are tasting the wines of a virtuoso. ~ Elizabeth Smith
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Kings Garden Vineyards

Some of the absolute best reds I've tasted in the Finger Lakes. ~copychick98
(Profile | Website)

Sheldrake Point Vineyard

Sheldrake Point is at the quintessential Finger Lakes winery location, situated with a beautiful overlook of Cayuga Lake on one side and a view of the vineyards on the other. The winery grows all its own grapes, so the vineyards are expansive. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Standing Stone Vineyards

The tasting room at Standing Stone Vineyards is housed in a cute little yellow house with teal trim on the eastern shores of Seneca Lake. Vineyards bridge the gap between the tasting room and the waterfront, and the tasting bars overlook both the vines and the lake. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Atwater Estate Vineyards

The tasting room at Atwater Estate Vineyards is housed in a cheery yellow farmhouse that overlooks the vineyards, a pond, and Seneca Lake. Well-maintained landscaping near the front walkway welcomes visitors to come inside. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Goose Watch Winery

Most of the wines on Goose Watch Winery menu have received multiple awards and medals, and after a tasting, it is easy to see why. Goose Watch‘s wines are unique, clean and balanced. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

J.R. Dill Winery

One of my favorite wineries in the region...If you're in the Finger Lakes Region, my opinion is, you must stop here! ~Tim
(Profile | Website)

Lakewood Vineyards

Christ Stamp, the charming and affable winemaker and owner of Lakewood Vineyards is almost reason enough to visit this small winery at the southern end of Lake Seneca, where there’s much love given to wines made from native varieties. ~Caroline Helper
(Review | Profile | Website)

Long Point Winery

If you're in the Finger Lakes region, this is one of the most unusual wineries in the area. In a region that does so well with whites and sweet wines, Long Point manages to make good reds of various dryness that stand out quite a bit compared to the rest of the wines in the region. ~Tim
(Profile | Website)

Shaw Vineyard

Their cold weather wines (especially the reds) were very good...bought a full case of it home to enjoy. ~MarkTNorman
(Profile | Photos | Website)


Service (map view)


Atwater Estate Vineyards

With three long bars, there is plenty of space for multiple large parties to taste without feeling crowded. The staff is exceptionally friendly, going beyond the typical question-and-answer back and forth about the menu. As they pour, they ask their visitors about themselves and share some of their own stories, in addition to talking about the wines in detail. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Catharine Valley Winery

The staff is friendly and charismatic and may join you in your tasting if the bar isn’t too busy. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Cayuga Ridge Estate Winery

The staff is friendly, chatty and knowledgeable, sharing information about the science of wine making as they pour. They are honest with their recommendations, gracefully steering you towards the wines they consider to be standouts or that might appeal to your tastes. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Fox Run Vineyards

Fox Run has a tasteful and airy front room with views of Seneca Lake that doubles as a retail space and tasting bar for its wines. However, the real treat is the large barn that has been converted to a tasting space. Strewn with string lights and housing a couple of the winery’s barrels and stainless steel fermenting tanks, it is a rustic and charming space that makes a perfect backdrop for tasting the winery’s offerings. ~Caroline Helper
(Review | Profile | Website)

J.R. Dill Winery

The service is always exceptional, very nice people and it's extra fun to visit when it's not too crowded. ~Tim
(Profile | Website)

Kemmeter Wines

Here, on the west side of Seneca Lake, is where you will taste with Reinhardt himself. The room is filled with classical music, one of Reinhardt's other great loves. The tasting is nothing short of mesmerizing as Reinhardt tells the story of each wine. You immediately notice that he never tells you what or how you should taste a wine, but rather provides the backdrop, the process, and allows you, the taster, to enjoy the wines with your own palate. ~ Elizabeth Smith
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Kings Garden Vineyards

I was waited on by the owner herself and she was a delight. Glad I stopped! ~copychick98
(Profile | Website)

Lakeshore Winery

Lakeshore Winery's strength lies in its welcoming, cozy atmosphere and friendly guided tastings. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Lakewood Vineyards

Casual, fun, warm, and inviting are all words to describe the atmosphere at Lakewood. Everyone is there to have a good time, taste some wine, and have a few laughs – largely provided by the winery’s owner Chris Stamp. ~Caroline Helper
(Review | Profile | Website)

Long Point Winery

They're always quite friendly, and very informative and knowledgable when it comes to telling you about wine in general. ~Tim
(Profile | Website)

Penguin Bay Winery & Champagne House

The server was enthusiastic and friendly and seemed excited to share her favorite wines with us. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Shaw Vineyard

Steve Sr and Steve Jr. are extremely knowledgeable and great to talk with. ~MarkTNorman
(Profile | Photos | Website)

Sheldrake Point Vineyard

The servers are friendly and generous with their pours...The staff seems knowledgeable, informing tasters not only of the flavor and origins of the wine, but also its history. At the end of a tasting, they may encourage you to walk out back to find the pond, which is described as “Thoreau-esque.” ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Standing Stone Vineyards

The staff is incredibly friendly and helpful, and the pours are sizeable. Our server was talkative and readily shared everything he knew about each wine, as well as facts about the Finger Lakes region and his personal experiences. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)


View/Ambiance (map view)


Catharine Valley Winery

Catharine Valley Winery’s tasting room is housed in an ivy-covered barn overlooking Seneca Lake. Picnic tables just outside the front door provide a clear view of the water and make for a wonderful place to sit with a glass of wine. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Cayuga Ridge Estate Winery

Cayuga Ridge Estate Winery, located in the Cayuga Lake American Viticultural Area and next door to Thirsty Owl Winery, is housed in a large repurposed barn. The farmhouse-style interior is rustic, with gothic church lights strewn throughout the rafters. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Fox Run Vineyards

Fox Run has a tasteful and airy front room with views of Seneca Lake that doubles as a retail space and tasting bar for its wines. However, the real treat is the large barn that has been converted to a tasting space. Strewn with string lights and housing a couple of the winery’s barrels and stainless steel fermenting tanks, it is a rustic and charming space that makes a perfect backdrop for tasting the winery’s offerings. ~Jessica Helper
(Review | Profile | Website)

Goose Watch Winery

Goose Watch Winery’s main tasting room is housed in a refurbished barn. A large wraparound deck overlooking the lake is filled with picnic tables, perfect for sipping a glass of wine while enjoying the view. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Kemmeter Wines

On the approach to Kemmeter Wines, you will see in the distance a very small, yet intimate and welcoming, tasting room among newly planted vineyards. Here, on the west side of Seneca Lake, is where you will taste with Reinhardt himself. The room is filled with classical music, one of Reinhardt's other great loves. ~ Elizabeth Smith
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Kings Garden Vineyards

The winery itself is so cute and quaint, and you'd miss it if you weren't looking for it. ~copychick98
(Profile | Website)

Lakeshore Winery

Lakeshore Winery is housed in a 19th century barn located on the western coast of Cayuga Lake. A trellised walkway covered in grape vines leads up to the front door, where a collie often greets visitors. The interior is cozy and covered in rustic wood. During the colder months, a fire blazes in the fireplace to keep things warm and add to the homey feel. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Sheldrake Point Vineyard

If you have time, take a walk around the property after your tasting. The lake views are breathtaking. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)

Thirsty Owl Wine Company

The drive into Thirsty Owl Wine Company’s parking lot is long and winding, passing by one of the vineyards and ending with a clear view of Cayuga Lake. The outdoor area of this Finger Lakes winery is beautifully landscaped, and the covered open-air seating for the bistro overlooks the vineyards and lake. ~Julie Grice
(Review | Profile | Photos | Website)


Aggregated Wine Critic Ratings


Producers of Finger Lakes' Highest Rated Red Wines  (map view)


 1. Bloomer Creek Vineyard
 2. Damiani Wine Cellars
 3. Heart & Hands Wine Company
 4. Swedish Hill Winery
 5. Atwater Estate
 6. Billsboro Winery
 6. Chateau LaFayette Reneau
 7. Dr. Konstantin Frank Vinifera Wine Cellars
 8. Fox Run Vineyards
 9. Glenora Wine Cellars
10. Goose Watch Winery
11. Hazlitt 1852 Vineyards
12. Heron Hill Winery
13. Hosmer Winery
14. Keuka Spring Vineyards
15. King Ferry Winery - Treleaven Wines
16. Knapp Vineyards & Winery
17. Lakewood Vineyards
18. Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellars
19. Ravines Wine Cellars
20. Red Newt Cellars & Bistro
21. Red Tail Ridge
22. Rooster Hill Vineyards
23. Shalestone Vineyards
24. Shaw Vineyard
25. Wagner Vineyards


Producers of Finger Lakes' Highest Rated White Wines  (map view)


 1. Boundary Breaks
 2. Heart & Hands Wine Company
 3. Hermann J Weimer Vineyards
 4. Keuka Lake Vineyards
 5. Anthony Road Wine Company
 6. Casa Larga Vineyards
 7. Chateau LaFayette Reneau
 8. Damiani Wine Cellars
 9. Dr. Konstantin Frank Vinifera Wine Cellars
10. Fox Run Vineyards
11. Hosmer Winery
12. Knapp Vineyards Winery & Restaurant
13. Lakewood Vineyards
14. Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellars
15. Prejean Winery
16. Ravines Wine Cellars
17. Red Newt Cellars & Bistro
18. Red Tail Ridge
19. Sheldrake Point Vineyard
20. Standing Stone Vineyards


Published: Jan. 8, 2014

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