Sunday, August 3, 2014

Wine Tasting at Ledge Rock Hill



Let me begin by saying that I have yet to give a real endorsement on this site, at least one that was paid for or anything like that. I start this article with that disclaimer because I don't want anyone to think that this winery paid me off. Trust me, it'd take at least twenty dollars to convince me to write something blatantly untrue, and these guys didn't pay me a dime!

I'm not an alcoholic by any means. I don't really like beer. Whiskey is alright but I'm not necessarily a fan of it, and wine never tasted too swell to me. My opinion on wine, at least, may have changed with my visit to the Ledge Rock Hill Winery and Vineyard, nestled in the Adirondacks near the Sacandaga.

To get there is a journey in itself. From what I could tell, you take a bunch of backwoods roads, and eventually, if you're lucky, you see a small sign sticking up out of the ground saying "winery next right" or something like that. Then you take a right (or left depending on your direction) onto 41 Stewart Dam Road, follow it past the neat little antique shop (which you should also visit, by the way), and drive up to the left into the quaint little winery parking lot.

At first glance, it looked like little more than a glorified log cabin. I was in a less-than-cheerful mood at the time though, so my initial assessment was definitely biased.

I promptly got out of the car and walked up the steps to the winery along with my family members, who had dragged me along on their grape-infused escapade.

Walking through the door was like entering a wine-themed utopia. Everything was extremely clean, there were neat handmade wine decorations everywhere, and a nice lady named Laura (at least I think that was her name, I'm going off the business card) was waiting for us behind a bar table lined with an assortment of colorful wines.

We sat down in front of her, and asked if we could do a little bit of wine tasting. She quickly gave us our glasses. Before pouring, she of course asked for my ID, and commented on how young I am (which normally annoys me but she was warm and amiable so I let it slide). Thus, the tasting commenced.

Let me tell you that, before today, I hated wine. I now know that it's because I'd never tasted wine worth more than $9 before. Here I tasted relatively expensive wines with hints of lemon, black pepper, tobacco, leather, lime, vanilla, and black berries. It was a tongue explosion. Or tongue-splosion, if you prefer. I'd always (well, as of two years ago) considered myself a connoisseur of coffee, and I liken this experience to the first time I tried a good cup of freshly ground french press coffee after years of burnt Folgers.

Not only was the wine sublime and splendorous, but the staff there (all two of them) kept the environment warm and inviting as we guzzled down the alcohol poured for us. The interior was a warm woody color (it was made out of wood so I guess that makes sense), and the lighting was perfect. There was also a back room where the wine was kept, with a large opening/window that looked out on the Adirondack forests behind the complex. From what I saw, it would be a beautiful place to have parties or other kinds of get-togethers.

A little buzzed and in a better mood, I left the winery feeling oddly satisfied with life. Not a bad transition considering I went in feeling pretty tired and bombarded by allergies!

On the way out we stopped at the little antique store I mentioned earlier, which was also a neat little Adirondack find. You'd probably like it if you enjoy interesting jewelry, as the owner (Janice) makes it herself and it's actually pretty cool (I say this as a guy who doesn't wear any jewelry so that must mean something).

Moral of the story? Don't put something down until you try it. I thought I would hate wine tasting, but left feeling like I'd opened myself to a whole new facet of life that I'd been missing out on previously. So go checkout this neat little winery in upstate New York! Just remember...always taste in moderation!


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