7 Long Island Wineries to Visit
Did you know that the North Fork of Long Island is teeming with some of the state’s best wineries? Yes, if you take a trip on the Long Island Expressway, about 80 miles east of Manhattan, you’ll land in a town called Riverhead. From there, discover a string of more than 40 wineries and tasting rooms in this coastal farming community hugging the Long Island Sound on its north side. On the south side across the bay, the South Fork or Hamptons also offers a handful of vineyards and wine experiences, along with arguably some of the best beaches in the US. So in case you’ve never been, the East End of Long Island is a pretty spectacular place.
Due to its maritime climate, varieties like Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Franc, and Merlot are well represented in Long Island wineries, but producers are also growing lesser-known grapes such as Albariño, Gewürztraminer, and Lemberger, also known as Blaufränkisch.
Many tasting rooms sell snacks or allow you to bring your own food, and many host live music on weekends. If I’ve piqued your curiosity about Long Island wineries to try, here’s a list of some of my favorites.
A fruity Sauvignon Blanc or a buttery but not-too oaky Chardonnay is what you’d catch me drinking at Jamesport Vineyards. This estate winery also produces reds such as Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Beyond the wines, the property is also a stunner. In warm weather, perch yourself on the lawn and sip while listening to tunes and indulging in a Neapolitan-inspired pizza baked in a wood-fired oven from Little Oak Wood-Fired Kitchen, whose pies rival some of New York City’s best.
1216 Main Road, Jamesport
While I’ve yet to visit the vineyard, I’ve tasted and purchased several reds and the rosé from Roanoke’s Love Lane tasting room in the heart of Mattituck. Compact but comfy with a relaxed vibe, this cute wine bar is a perfect stopover before or after shopping at the Village Cheese Shop or Lombardi’s Market. Roanoke’s reds, especially the Cab Franc, are some of my favorite on the East End. If Mother Nature is in a good mood, you can taste on the rear patio.
165 Love Lane, Mattituck
I’ve tasted and sipped my share of wines from Osprey’s Dominion over the years. The wines, especially the reds are stellar, and the service here is always friendly. The Cabernet Franc and Merlot are go-to bottles for me, and the Meritage, or Bordeaux blend, is also outstanding. Since Osprey’s property is large, expect crowds on the weekends when the weather cooperates (especially on Saturdays), but you can almost always grab a seat outside where it’s quite the party.
44075 Main Road, Cutchogue
I can’t say enough about Paumonok’s winemaking style. From the rosé to dry riesling, to the everyday drinking Festival Red and the Assemblage (a blend of 46% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot and 18% Petit Verdot), I love them all. Paumonok’s reds, in my opinion, are some of the best Long Island wines you’ll taste. The property is also a beauty. However, the tasting room is on the smaller side, so prime times can get crowded. But the deck, overlooking the vineyards, provides pretty views and more seating.
1074 Main Road, Aquebogue
Corey Creek Tap Room
This charming tasting room and sprawling vineyard in Southold is ideal for quaffing a bottle with friends on a relaxing afternoon. Crafting small-batch wines from sustainable fruit and indigenous yeasts, Corey Creek is the sister winery to Bedell Cellars in Cutchogue. The rosés are some of the region’s best, but you’ll have an array of choices, including red, white, and sparkling wines. In spring, summer, and fall, sit on the covered porch or out on the lawn and catch a few rays while you taste.
45470 Main Road, Cutchogue
I’m a huge fan of all things Macari. Not only are the wines top-notch, but the staff is incredibly helpful and friendly. Macari’s Mattituck property is set on 500 acres of vineyards, and Meadowlark is the producer’s wine bar in Cutchogue. Both propeties are beautiful, so park yourself on the deck for a tasting or schedule a more elaborate wine session in the barrel cellar or private tasting suite.. I recommend the Chardonnay Reserve and the Dos Aguas, a full-bodied Bordeaux-style red.
150 Bergen Avenue, Mattituck
The only vineyard I’ve visited on the South Fork, Wölffer’s property is one of my absolute favorites. Inside and out, the space is magnificent. I’m particularly fond of the white and rosé wines here, but Wölffer also produces reds, as well as white and rosé ciders. Expect a scene–– after all, Wölffer is in the heart of the Hamptons. In the summertime, the Wölffer Wine Stand (3312 Montauk Hwy) on Wölffer Estate Vineyard is the place to be on weekends, especially on Friday and Saturday evenings when people gather to watch breathtaking sunsets over the vines. Magical.
139 Sagg Road, Sagaponack
Aren’t you in the mood to drink a glass of Long Island wine? I am. I’d love to know your favorite Long Island wineries! This list is not comprehensive, as there are many more excellent places to taste wine on the East End. For more info on Long Island wineries, visit the website.