Deck the Halls 2014 recap


758 miles door to door traveled the entire weekend before Thanksgiving. The destination? Seneca Lake, nestled above the quaint town of Watkins Glen, NY. The Mission? To hop around the Wineries A-HH and hit as many as possible in 18 hours over the course of 3 days.

Mission Accomplished!

Our game plan consisted of breaking the lake up into 3 parts, the Eastern shore (EE-U), the Western shore (G-S), and the Northern Tip (FF-F) from the map above. Based on previous trips up here we immediately knocked out 6 of the wineries we knew we weren’t going to visit. The premise of the weekend for those that may have missed last years post on this is to pick a winery to start at, get your grapevine wreath, and then at each subsequent winery you get a food and wine pairing along with an ornament to decorate the wreath.

We had a fantastic time, a bit of snow on Friday didn’t dampen any spirits at all. So Friday morning off we went to one of our favorite breakfast hole in the walls called The Crossing Diner. The food is greasy spoon and the locals are local. I had a sausage and cheese omelet and the hubby had stuffed french toast. It was delicious as always and made for a good base for the wine we were to consume.

Friday’s Route was G-S (it was originally going to be the top of the lake but some last minute plans for Saturday changed that), and without fail we managed to hit all of the wineries we needed to that day. 2 years into this I realize that Friday/Sunday are the slower days of the weekend which helped us on our quest.

IMG_3118Friday night we traveled over to meet our friend Toppie, who lives in the area, for dinner at “The Rustic Lodge” as I dubbed it. We were pleasantly surprised to find the food totally didn’t match the ambiance of the place.


Saturday we picked a different place for breakfast that was a diner, then a BBQ Joint/Diner, and now is just a diner again. The food was just as good and we ended up going there again on Sunday for breakfast since we were on that side of the lake again. Saturday was the “Top” of the Lake as we were going to be meeting up with someone The Hubby knew from one of his little online games (Game of War) who lives in the area. We had a great time at lunch with Mike, the conversation flowed as if we had known each other for a very long time. We tackled all of the Wineries we set out to do and then headed back to the Motel to relax before dinner.

The problem with this area in the winter months is the lack of establishments that stay open off season. That and there are not very many eating establishments to begin with and having some closed doesn’t help the options. We ended up at Seneca Lodge, which can best be described as the Lodge house for what is a campground. The place was packed but we were able to get a table in the back corner out of the way. Another couple was sat at the table behind us but they very quickly left. I thought they were a little too fancy for this place anyway.

IMG_3136Sunday was the final day to get our wine on, with all the cold and snow over the weekend a few of the falls (as seen above) were frozen over and melting slowly. We proceeded to breakfast, and then up the East side of the lake to the furthest winery on the list and just dove in head first. The east side includes quite a few of our favorite wineries. We spent a little more time at those than we did at others and are always quick to chat up the Owners/Workers.

Sunday night found us invited over to dine with some new friends we made up there, the husband and wife each work at different wineries (which also happen to be our 2 most favorite). It was nice to just sit and talk and eat with them, and again the conversation just flowed as if we have known each other forever. It’s also good to get some of the dirt on the other Wineries around the lake. Not that we gossip or anything 😉


Until we meet again in July, I bid the Finger Lakes Adieu. Sleep well over the winter…….






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