Archives for March 2012

Spanish Rose: Perfect for Grilled Meat and Bull Fights

Spanish Rose: Perfect for Grilled Meat and Bull Fights

Some may incorrectly sneer that roses are girly wines (what’s wrong with that?), but one of the most famous of all manly-men, Ernest Hemingway, reportedly loved to imbibe some Rosada before attending bull fighting matches. So if a light-bodied, dry wine can get Hemingway in the mood for bull fights, our Spanish Rose should get you in the mood for warm summer afternoons of eating grilled fish or meats, spicy foods and having good times with friends.

Roses get their blushy, pink color by keeping the red grapes in their skins for a shorter period of time than for red wines. You could even call rose an unfinished red wine. Red wines usually sit in the grape skins for two weeks, while roses are left with the skins for just a couple of days. After the skins are removed, roses ferment as white wine. Roses may also be made by mixing red and white varietals.

Spanish roses can be made from Garnacha or Tempranillo grapes. Our Spanish rose is made with Tempranillo, which means “little early one” because of the grape’s short growing season. Most Spanish roses come from the Rioja and Ribera del Duero growing regions of Spain.

So in preparation for summer, we’re selling our Spanish Rose for $8.95. Whether you’re heading off to a bull fight or just your backyard, come in and pick up a bottle or two!



Learn How to Make Wine — We Show You How!

Learn How to Make Wine — We Show You How!

I thought I’d share with you a really great email Andy received from fellow winemaking enthusiasts in Canada. Geoff and Cindy, who live in British Columbia, bought a winemaking kit from Craigslist and set out to make their very own wine at home, but they needed a little help. In his search to figure out how to make wine with his kit, Geoff came across our step-by-step guide to making wine, and our process did the trick.

Geoff wrote to Andy:

I stumbled on your 5 Step Winemaking From Concentrate on YouTube.  You could not have explained that any clearer.

I followed your video step-by-step and the wine turned out perfect.

Just wanted to say thanks.

Thank you Geoff and Cindy! We love getting messages like this because nothing makes us happier than spreading the winemaking love. Check out our step-by-step guide for yourself here.


Bare Feet Not Required

You know that classic I Love Lucy episode in which Lucy gets a job in an Italian vineyard and she crushes the grapes with her bare feet? That’s exactly what I thought I’d be doing the first time I ever made wine at Lakeland Winery.

When our website designer, Phil, first invited me to make wine at Lakeland in 2006 (long before I started blogging!), I was a bit apprehensive. I’m not one for getting dirty. Even when I was a kid, the thought of finger painting freaked me out, so the idea of stomping around barefoot in a pile of grapes didn’t sound ideal. However, I like wine more than enough to try making my own even if it meant reddish-purple stains between my toes. I would just have to prepare.

Picture this: On winemaking day, I dressed like someone who was going to be rolling around in a vat of grapes. I wore my oldest pair of jeans with the cuffs rolled up. I pulled my hair back as tight as possible. It was drizzling that late-October day in Syracuse, so I didn’t look like a complete idiot in my raincoat.

So there I was ready to take off my shoes and socks, wondering where they keep the wine-stomping barrels at Lakeland Winery. Owner Andy ushered our party into a cozy wine-tasting room. During the first part of the experience you get to taste about 20 wines before you choose the one you’d like to make. We chose the light, floral Muller-Thurgau, and I wished that I had eaten something more substantial than toast before sampling a bunch of wines (here’s a tip: bring snacks to your wine tasting party).

We then went to the winemaking room. I didn’t see any barrels or vats filled with grapes to be crushed between the toes. That’s when I learned that making wine at Lakeland Winery isn’t like the messy process that Lucy Ricardo endured. Instead, making wine at Lakeland is a bit like mixing ingredients before baking a cake. The winery staff does as much or as little as you’d like all the while explaining how wine is made. It’s fun and educational.

I got to slowly stir the water and bentonite, followed by the juice and the elderflowers before sprinkling the yeast in the fermentation bucket. That’s the first step in making wine. The next step happened a week later when the fermenting wine was siphoned into a carboy. This step is called racking. During week three the wine was stabilized, and potassium sorbate and potassium metabisfulate were added to help sterilize the wine. The wine fermented for another four weeks and then we got to come back to the Lakeland to bottle and label our wines. No bare feet required.



Making Wine? There’s an App for That

Making Wine? There’s an App for That

Making wine is an exacting science, requiring perfect chemistry. If you’re concerned about getting the fermentation, fining, acidification, water dilution, fortification and brix just right, wine industry clearinghouse VinoEnology created an iPhone application, iWineMaker, for the fastidious vintner.

iWineMaker provides calculations for acid, sulfur dioxide, yeast, sugar conversions, and weight and volume equivalents.

Of course, you could also just come to Lakeland Winery. We’re like you’re very own wine making app too.

St. Patrick’s Day Limited Edition Wine!

St. Patrick’s Day Limited Edition Wine!

Spring is just around the corner and we’re getting ready with a few great wine sales. First, leprechauns magically transformed our semi-sweet Cayuga White into a shamrock green treat. All this week we’re selling the limited edition Belligerent Bastard for $9.95. Hurry up and get yourself a bottle for St. Patrick’s Day because these bottles are going fast!

Sixty degree days in the middle of March can be inspiring for us Syracuseans, and here at Lakeland Winery, the warm weather inspired us to do some Spring cleaning. Right now we’re making room for new wines with a sale on reds and whites — we have 750 ml bottles of reds and white for $5. Our 375 ml dry reds are on sale for $3 and dry whites are on sale for $2.