October in Finger Lakes Wine Country is the perfect time to leaf peep. The most brilliant reds and oranges start to fill the landscapes adding to the already present yellow hues. Similar to September, October in the region means harvest and fall themed events, open houses, festivals and of course, endless Finger Lakes wine and local foods to enjoy.
Here are some events taking place this month to help you plan a weekend getaway:
Oct 5-6 | Hunt Country Vineyards
Annual Harvest Festival
Hunt Country’s Harvest Festival returns for the 24th year, October 5th and 6th. The festival is chock full of activities for the whole family to enjoy and the admission is free. Some highlights include cooking demonstrations and a full menu of delicious food prepared by culinary arts students, grape stomping, horse-drawn wagon rides, special cellar tastings with the winemaker, winery tours, new wine releases, live music, fine food purveyors and art vendors.
For more details,
Oct 12-13 | Finger Lakes Cheese Trail Columbus Day Weekend Two-Day Open House
The twelve farms of the Finger Lakes Cheese Trail open up their doors to visitors to sample their cheeses, meet their animals and learn about the cheese making process. Admission is free. The Trail provides an interactive driving map to aid in planning routes. For more details,
Oct 12-14 | Glass Farmers Market at The Corning Museum of Glass
To celebrate fall, The Corning Museum of Glass hosts “Glass Harvest” annually, starting September and ending mid-November. The celebration includes a display of the world’s largest glass pumpkin, opportunities for visitors to make their own glass pumpkins at The Studio, Harvest Hunts throughout the museum to find fall-themed objects in the galleries as well as a Glass Farmers Market, October 12-14. The market offers visitors a wonderful opportunity to browse and choose from thousands of handmade glass pumpkins, apples and more at appealing price points. For more details,
Oct 25 | Monster Bash 2013 at the Holiday Inn Elmira Riverview
The Holiday Inn Elmira Riverview and Pembrook Pines Media Group are proud to present Monster Bash in 2013. This Halloween bash features live DJs and a costume contest with cash and prizes up to $1,000 in value. Attendees must be 21. Tickets are $10. For more details,
Oct 26 | Glentoberfest at The Glen
Watkins Glen International excitedly adds an inaugural “Glentoberfest” celebration to their events calendar this year. This Oktoberfest celebration features authentic German music, some of the finest regional and international beers and festival style cuisine. It will take place inside the heated NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Garage. Live music will be provided by Fritz’s Polka Band, out of Verona, NY. The band has been featured on “The Manchurian Candidate” as well as on the hit TV show “Breaking Bad.” Attendees must be 21. Tickets are $35.00 for adults and $20.00 for designated drivers. For more details,
Oct 28 - Nov 3 | Finger Lakes Restaurant Week
Visit our events calendar to search for more events by type and location►
Finger Lakes Wine Country presents Finger Lakes Restaurant Week, a one week celebration of the finest and freshest cuisine in the region at eleven participating restaurants. Chefs team up with neighboring farmers and winemakers to create locally sourced two-course prix fixe lunch menus and three-course prix fixe dinner menus at irrestible price points. Enjoy lunch for as low as $10 and dinner for as low as $25. Visit
for the latest updates, menus, locations, and hours for each restaurant.
This weekend the fall foliage will peak in Finger Lakes Wine Country
. I really thought last weekend was the peak, but from what I've seen around the region this weekend will certainly be rich with deep reds and stunning golden hues.
Yesterday I flew into the Elmira Corning Regional Airport
and snapped this shot just before landing. A small taste of how beautiful the hillsides are in the region right now.
And the best news is that despite a rather rainy fall, this weekend is supposed to be sunny and in the high 50's, perfect pumpkin picking weather if you ask me!
Have a wonderful weekend! If you take any spectacular fall photos, be sure to share them on our Finger Lakes Wine Country Facebook page
Tomorrow is the first day of October, an enchanting month in Finger Lakes Wine Country
. The hills are dotted with bright reds and golden yellows, the breeze is cool and crisp, and the vineyards are busy with harvest activities. Fall is certainly a magical time of year in the region. With all the hustle and bustle of the grape harvest and fall festivals matched with the stunning beauty of the region there's no question why.
This weekend is full of exciting fall fun for the entire family. The Hunt Country Vineyards Harvest Festival
is taking place both tomorrow and Sunday. This exciting festival features the best of the region; food and wine! Also enjoy cellar tours and tastings and be the first to taste the new releases. This weekend is also the Wineglass Marathon
5,000 runners will journey 26.2 miles from Bath to Corning. Another wondeful event that you could take part in is the Riesling Harvest Extravaganza at Keuka Lake Vineyards
. If you take part in this event you actually are able to help pick the grapes and then enjoy lunch and dinner with the staff at Keuka Lake Vineyards. Talk about a wonderful harvest experience! Other fun activities to consider this weekend are apple picking and wine tasting. Whatever you choose to do this weekend, enjoy it!
Autumn is one of the most magical times of year in Finger Lakes Wine Country
. Between the bright, bold colors of the season and the bustling harvest activities, fall is chockfull of beautiful excitement. Corning's Gaffer District
is celebrating fall's arrival with the annual Jazz & Harvest Festival
, September 23 & 24, 2011. The festival brings together the perfect pairing of regional jazz music and Finger Lakes wine and beer. Friday night, September 23rd, lovers of wine, beer, and jazz are invited to Corning's Gaffer District to enjoy the night's festivities. Businesses up and down Market and Bridge Streets will have regional jazz musicians in house along with a Finger Lakes winery or brewery pouring samples for you to enjoy. Tickets are just $15 and are available in advance at Corning's Information Center at 1 W. Market Street. Saturday is perfect for families looking to enjoy some fall fun. Vote for your favorite scarecrow in the scarecrow contest and enjoy the Corning Elk's Club chili cook-off. The farmers market will be in full swing and the evening will round out with a free concert by country artist, Sammy Kershaw, in Centerway Square.
Learn more about this exciting weekend in this 15-minute Escape to the Finger Lakes podcast
Beautiful foliage, fresh apple cider, and visiting the pumpkin patch are just a few of the reasons I love fall in Finger Lakes Wine Country
. Everyone is familiar with the apple, pumpkins, and grape harvest, but did you also know that fall is wonderful for fresh greens including chard and kale, and who can forget winter squash. This is just a taste of what I learned this week interviewing Caroline Boutard-Hunt of Italy Hill Produce
. Caroline is the wife of Jonathan Hunt, winemaker for Hunt Country Vineyards. Together, Jonathan and Caroline started Italy Hill Produce last year and run the small operation out of the winery.
Want to know more? Listen to the 15-minute podcast with Caroline now:
Budget Travel readers voted the Finger Lakes as the most beautiful wine region in the world. We are on a mission to visit places Finger Lakes Wine Country Facebook
fans recommend as their favorite "most beautifuls" and share our journey with you.
Tour 3 travels take us to Mark Twain Country, stopping at the Mark Twain Study, Clemens Center, Chemung Valley History Museum, Arnot Art Museum, Christmas House, Hill Top Inn, Tanglewood Nature Center and Museum, Harris Hill, National Soaring Museum, Arnot Mall, and Antique Revival.
Download the map
from today's trip. You can also use the Itinerary Builder
to build your own custom adventure.
Hill Top Innhttp://www.hill-top-inn.com/
Now in our third generation, Michael & Suzanne continue to set the benchmark in the Finger Lakes Region for the finest food and Irish Hospitality around.
Mark Twain Study & Exhibit at Elmira College http://www.elmira.edu/academics/distinctive_programs/twain_center/study
See where Mark Twain wrote Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and other classics.
The Christmas Housewww.christmas-house.com/
Feel the Magic at this 1894 Queen Anne Mansion, filled with six rooms of holiday delights and much more!
Tanglewood Nature Center & Museum www.tanglewoodnaturecenter.com/
Nine miles of scenic trails in the Finger Lakes area that begin at the Nature Center allow you to experience the natural beauty of the Chemung Valley first-hand.
Harris Hill Amusement Parkhttp://www.harrishillamusements.com/
Putt-Putt golf, kiddie rides, arcade, golf driving range, batting cages, go-karts, snack bar, souvenirs, picnic area, swimming, and amazing view of the Chemung River valley.
Chemung County/ Mark Twain Country Information Centerhttp://www.marktwaincountry.com/
Brochures and information on "Mark Twain Country", Elmira, Horseheads and the surrounding area.
Chemung Valley History Museumhttp://www.chemungvalleymuseum.org/
Take a walk through time and discover treasures from the past. The Chemung Valley History Museum strives to present history in unique and dynamic ways.
Where the designers and decorators shop!
Arnot Art Museum http://www.arnotartmuseum.org/
A world-class institution of fine art located at 235 Lake Street in Elmira, and open Tuesdays through Saturdays.
Arnot Mall is a super-regional shopping center located in the southern tier of New York State just off of I-86, Exit 51A.
National Soaring Museumhttp://www.soaringmuseum.org/
If youd rather keep your feet on the ground, try out some state of the art, hands-on flight simulators at the National Soaring Museum located directly adjacent to the Soaring Center atop Harris Hill.
Located in the central Southern Tier of New York State, the Clemens Center is the region's premier performing arts center with two spectacular performance spaces.
From the desk (I mean fields) of Italy Hill Farm
located at Hunt Country Vineyards.
Jonathan and Caroline Hunt (son and daughter-in-law of Art and Joyce Hunt) have recently helped expand the Hunt Farm to include produce. We love reading their weekly updates and thought you might too...
"We had our first frost in the field Saturday night so this week has been focused on the clean up of our field of summer annuals. We use plastic mulch combined with drip irrigation with our heat loving crops such as basil, squash and tomatoes. All of the plastic is removed prior to winter. These rows have served as a mouse/vole superhighway all summer and both of our dogs really enjoy us exposing all of their tunnels and nests. Neither dog is an extremely good hunter but the odds were on their side yesterday. Of course, I let out an involuntary squeal every time a mouse runs over my foot that is highly amusing to Jon and the dogs.
Jon started spreading manure and aged compost in the upper field today. Unfortunately the tardiness of this email is due to Jon not learning his lesson about never overloading the manure spreader (he added this line in). When it is overloaded the unloading chain that runs along the bottom of the spreader breaks and he gets to unload all 130 bushels by hand. needless to say he spent the evening repairing the spreader and becoming more and more fragrant. We are getting our field ready for garlic planting, hopefully before the end of the month. We have planted as late as a warm week in December before with good results but both of us prefer not to risk it, especially as bending down that far at 9 months pregnant will be a considerably more difficult task than it is now!
Our greens are still growing beautifully in this cool, damp fall. I am still planting, now in anticipation of an early spring harvest. Both Spinach and Corn Salad, also known as Mache, overwinter very successfully with only a light covering of hay. I also noticed that we have some Miner's Lettuce that is a native green that was supposedly eaten during the gold rush to prevent scurvy. It has a lovely flavor and a nice fleshy crunch that is delicious in the early spring before much else is available in the garden. I love when edible plants reseed themselves, even if their location is somewhat of a challenge. Our Miner's Lettuce has filled in all the spaces between our third planting of Kale. For now, I am letting them live in harmony but the Miner's Lettuce has precedence if they start encroaching on each others territory."
Thanks very much,Caroline and Jonathan (Hunt)What we will have this week (longer descriptions, recipes and pricing follow):
Concord Grapes (no spray, limited quantity)
Galactic Carrots (limited quantity)
Hakurei Turnips (limited quantity)
Wild Garden Kale
Concord Grapes - These are the grapes that edge our "greens garden". The plants are unsprayed due to their proximity to our field. They are intensely flavored and sweet. We will have a very small quantity of these for sale on Saturday as long as they're still tasty after the rain on Thursday and Friday. $1.50/lb
Galactic Carrots- Sweet and multicolored. $3.00/bag
Garlic- We started growing garlic about 5 years ago with 4 heads from a good friend of mine, Katie Straight. Her parents had been growing it for around 30 years. We believe it's a type of German Porcelain but we just call it "Katie's Garlic". Very large cloves with a strong, spicy garlic flavor. $1 a head, or $5.00 per pound for orders over 1 pound.
Hakurei Turnips- These are just beginning to size up so hopefully next week we'll have a reasonable amount to offer. This week we will have an extremely limited quantity. Very sweet, small white turnips. Delicious raw or braised in butter. The greens can be chopped and cooked. $3.00/bag
Misticanza means "jumble" in Italian. My parents began calling the random blends of cultivated and "found" greens they would bring in from the field Misticanza a few years ago and the name stuck. In Italy the term is used for either a bawdy operetta or a blend of salad greens, mostly wild, including chicories, mustards, various herbs and the like. Our misticanza is made up of around 14 varieties of mustards, small kale, chard, arugula and a bit of Chenopodium album and Amaranthus retroflexus (lambsquarters and pigweed) for our wild component. Although some hardy souls could consider them salad greens, Jon and I prefer our version as a cooked green. There are two easy ways to cook these greens- if you prefer a stronger style of green, saute in olive oil with salt, garlic, chili pepper flakes or whatever else you prefer. For milder greens, blanch briefly (around 30 seconds) in boiling salted water. Drain then saute as above. $2.00/bag
Bok Choy- also known as Pac Choi is a very popular green particularly in Southern China. Its name translates literally to "white vegetable", not a very exciting title for a delicious fall or spring green. Younger plants have green stems, which although it takes away from the descriptiveness of the name, we find more tender and flavorful. If you're a pickling sort, it can be used in place of Chinese Cabbage in Kimchi. The stems may be eaten raw, somewhat like celery but without the strings. My sister-in-law's friend loves to eat his Bok Choy raw, dipped in a peanut sauce. His peanut sauce consists of natural peanut butter with Siracha chili sauce (the bright red sauce in the squeeze bottle with the rooster) mixed in to taste. When we add it to stir fry, it is generally the last ingredient in the pot as it is best enjoyed lightly cooked. I spent some time looking for an exciting recipe for Bok Choy but pretty much all of the ones I found were variations on how we already cook it. Heat oil (peanut or vegetable). Add ginger or garlic if you like. Add and saute Bok Choy until nearly tender. Add soy sauce, oyster sauce or some other flavoring. Adjust seasoning. Enjoy. $2.00/bag
Rainbow Chard- Delicious and tender. The stems hold their many colors when sauteed. Especially delicious when sauteed with a bit of bacon. $2.00/bag.
Wild Garden Kale- A lovely blend of kale phenotypes from Frank Morton of Wild Garden Seeds. We like our kale young and tender. It will continue to become sweeter as our nights remain cool. It is so sweet and mild you could also make a raw kale salad from it. $2.00 a bag.
Winter Squash- For small squash we have delicatas and sweet dumplings. The delicatas are extremely sweet and completely edible. I love these sliced and roasted. So does Mouse the wonder terrier. The Sweet dumplings are quite sweet and are very nice baked in halves or in slices. The skin is a bit tougher but still quite edible.
For the larger squash we will be bringing 2 varieties to the market- Galeux d'Eysines and Marina di Chioggia. Galeux d'Eysines is a French heirloom variety which has a smooth flesh that's wonderful for soup or pureed. Marina di Chioggia is an Italian heirloom whose name very roughly translates to "Sea Pumpkin of Chioggia". Still sweet, it has a deeper, more complex vegetal flavor than most other winter squashes. Used for soup or gnocchi. If you have a food mill I highly recommend cooking your squash with the seeds in and then running it through the food mill. This adds a nutty quality from the delicious seed oils and really enhances the flavor of the squash.
We'll also be bringing some Rouge Vif d'Etampes. These are reminiscent of Cinderella's carriage. Beautiful red sometimes streaked with orange. The flesh is not as sweet or complex as other types but it is used in France as a soup pumpkin as the flesh is very smooth and a bright color. The soup is then served in the shell of the pumpkin. They are also supposed to be delicious as a pie pumpkin. We generally use them as an ornamental and will sell them whole for probably 5-10 dollars a piece, depending on weight. $0.50/lb for whole squash, small or large, $1.00/lb for sliced squash.
Looking for more "locavore" experiences in Finger Lakes Wine Country? Explore our things to do database.
Want to learn more about the Finger Lakes Cheese Trail and this weekend's open house? Listen to the 15-minute podcast with Christina from the Finger Lakes Wine Country team and Nancy Taber Richards of Finger Lakes Farmstead Cheese Company.
In Finger Lakes Wine Country
, sure we love wine, but we also love cheese. As you travel along a wine trail this Saturday and Sunday (Oct. 9-10), compliment your wine palette with a few stops along the Finger Lakes Cheese Trail. This weekend, nine creameries will hold an open house from 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.
During the open house, talk with the cheesemakers and learn how cheese is made.
Also, taste fresh samples and buy products directly from the source. The taste of the Finger Lakes cheeses is exceptional -- a direct result of the attention to quality the cheesemakers apply to their processes. Many creameries only use their own milk to make artisanal farmstead cheese. They also handcraft their products. As a result, the taste of their cheeses is exceptional.
While on the farm, take a tour and say 'hello' to the animals. This little guy is a pet at Sunset View Creamery.
Open House participating creameries: Sunset View Creamery in Odessa; Finger Lakes Farmstead Cheese Co. in Mecklenberg; Keeleys Cheese Co. in King Ferry; Muranda Cheese in Waterloo; Lively Run Goat Dairy in Interlaken; Northland Sheep Dairy in Marathon; Sidehill Acres Goat Farm in Candor; Engelbert Farms in Nichols; and Wake Robin Farm in Jordan.