The East End of Long Island is wine country! With over 60 vineyards and wineries rooted in the Hamptons and across the North Fork, you can find a red, white, bubbly, or rose perfect for lazy summer nights or fabulous festivities. These are our top ten favorite places to sip and savor the famous fruits of the East End starting on the North Fork in Greenport, looping around through Riverhead, and continuing east to the Hamptons on the South Fork.
Kontokosta Winery – 825 North Road, Greenport
No vineyard can boast better views than the recently opened Kontakosta from its perch high atop the bluffs in Greenport. Their 2012 Sauvignon Blanc took home a Double Gold Medal as well as a Best in Class at the 2013 International East Meets West Wine Challenge.
Sparkling Pointe – 39750 County Road 48, Southold
If you like bubbly then you can’t miss this North Fork hot spot. Award winning winemaker Gilles Martin crafts sparkling wines in the methode champenoise, just like they do in the Champagne region of France from where he hails. Pair the brut with cheese and caviar, the 2010 Topaz Imperial with spicy seafood dishes, and the Cuvée Carnaval with sweet or savory foods.
Bedell Cellars – 36225 Main Road, Cutchogue
This sustainable vineyard grows over 80 acres of grapes and produces a variety of wines under the watchful eye of winemaker Rich Olsen-Harbich. Relax in the tasting room, a 1919 converted potato barn with spectacular vineyard views, or enjoy the sprawling grounds while sipping the rich and complex malbec, juicy First Crush Red, or earthy cabernet franc, hailed by many oenophiles as one the best reds around.
Castello Di Borghese Vineyard & Winery – 17150 County Road 48
The vineyard that started it all in 1973, known as Hargrave Vineyards until the Borghese family bought and renamed the vineyard in 1999. Renowned for their rich reds and nuanced whites, you can take a guided tour with owners Prince Marco and Princess Ann Marie Borghese if you schedule in advance or pop by on Saturday night and enjoy live cabaret music.
Jamesport Vineyards – 1216 Main Road, Jamesport
It’s always a party at Jamesport where live music and wine blends just as nicely as the vineyards’ Estate Series Mélange de Trois, a deliciously complex blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, and cabernet franc. Their East End Series wines are venerable crowd pleasers that include rose, red and white table wines, sparkling, and a new riesling that is growing in popularity.
Duck Walk Vineyards South – 231 Montauk Highway, Water Mill
Enjoy a light red pinot meunier or sweet Vidal Ice Wine, made with grapes frozen on the vine, during one of Duck Walk’s cheese and wine pairing parties this season. Yearning for something decadent? Try the Blueberry Port made from blueberries, not grapes, paired with dark chocolate.
Channing Daughters Winery – 1927 Scuttlehole Road, Bridgehampton
Taking the artisanal approach to winemaking in Bridgehampton, Channing Daughters prides itself on hand-picking every grape before it’s carefully juiced and fermented in small batches throughout the year. With a wide range of offerings that include reds, whites, and pinks that you expect here on the East End, you can also find unique orange wines and vermouth. Our favorites include the 2012 Refosco, that pairs nicely with rich fare, and the 2011 Tocai Friulano Sylvanus Vineyard, perfect to sip while enjoying meats and cheeses.
Wolffer Estate Vineyard – 139 Sagg Road, Sagaponack
Haven’t you always wished you could bottle the perfect summer day? Well, winemaker Roman Roth has done just that with the new rose dubbed “Summer in a Bottle.” The crisp, fruity wine is the color of an East End sunset and goes with absolutely everything. Visit the winery for Twilight Thursdays for live music or drop by the Wolffer Wine Stand (3312 Montauk Highway, Sagaponack) on Friday and Saturday and sip over the vines as day turns to night.
Lieb Cellars – 13050 Oregon Road, Cutchogue and 26 Park Place, East Hampton
Making the jump across Peconic Bay just in time for the summer, Lieb offers grab-and-go boxed wines for the beach or boat as well as kegs of wine for larger parties. Sip the Rumor Mill Hard Cider, to be released this June, or go traditional with their splendid 2012 Reserve Pinot Blanc.
For a day of enjoyment with friends or when trying to make an impression on important clients, simply schedule time at one or more of the best wineries in the Hamptons & North Fork and hire a one of the most reputable limo service in Long Island.
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Also published on Medium.