(0) | $0.00

Johnson Estate Winery



Jennifer Johnson
May 29, 2024 | Jennifer Johnson

Summer! Celebrate with SIX Sparkling Wines

Sparkling Rosé
Sparkling Traminette
The Queen's Catawba
King Ives
May Wine


Time Posted: May 29, 2024 at 8:51 AM Permalink to Summer! Celebrate with SIX Sparkling Wines Permalink
Jennifer Johnson
April 15, 2024 | Jennifer Johnson

What's Sweet Woodruff?

The Story Behind Johnson Estate's May Wine
Johnson Estate is located in a special microclimate along the shores of Lake Erie, similar to that found in Germany.  As a result, the grapes grown and wine made in Germany - Rieslings, Pinot Noir, and ice ones - are exactly the ones which also do well here in western New York.

Johnson Estate's Winemaker Jeff Murphy, travels to Europe every year or two and often comes back with some new insights or "discoveries" which are utilized in our products or events.  These have included: the terracotta bottles used for our Ruby Port and Cream Sherry; the glass corks manufactured in Germany and now used on our Freelings Creek wines, and the idea of serving "Fedderweiser", a partially fermented grape juice, for a fall Riesling celebration. 

May Day in Germany
In Germany, spring festivities feature "Maiwein", or white wine punches with strawberries and a handful of the shade-loving herb, sweet woodruff (shown here, behind the bottle, just emerging for spring).  Jeff was inspired by the annual celebration of May Day in Germany to create Johnson Estate’s own May Wine, using estate-grown Vidal Blanc wine and an infusion of dried sweet woodruff.  This sparkling May Wine was first released in 2016 and since the "experiment" was so well-liked, production was doubled the following year.  Our current plan is to release, each spring, a limited vintage of this special wine.    .

But What is Sweet Woodruff?
Galium Odoratum
In Germany, sweet woodruff is called “Waldmeister” or the “Master of the Woods”.  It is a spring blooming perennial plant which thrives in moist woodland shade.  In the Middle Ages, it was known as an herbal medicine since the dried leaves contain coumarin and infusions were used as a spring tonic and even as an aphrodisiac.  When dried, the herb has the long-lasting scent of freshly mown grass and vanilla.  The dried herb has been used for centuries as a strewing herb, for pot pourri or as a perfume ingredient, as a tonic in tea, and an ingredient in German May Wine or a punch made with white wine, this herb, and strawberries – to celebrate the coming of spring.

See May Wine product listing.

Time Posted: Apr 15, 2024 at 5:58 AM Permalink to What's Sweet Woodruff? Permalink
Jeff Murphy
February 9, 2024 | Jeff Murphy

The Second

On February 3, we were able to harvest some Vidal Blanc ice wine grapes, which had been netted in the fall. While farm staff harvested the Chambourcin on Boxing Day, December 26th, the Vidal was left for the next cold spell.....which finally came on February 3rd.

Time Posted: Feb 9, 2024 at 1:11 PM Permalink to The Second Permalink
Jennifer Johnson
December 22, 2023 | Jennifer Johnson

"The event is virtual, the food is real". January 25th - Peking Duck & Wine Pairings

One of Johnson Estate's first virtual tasting events during the pandemic took place in December 2020. Organized with the Smith Family Business Initiative at Cornell University, the virtual tasting featured two businesses owned by Cornell alumni (wines and duck!). It was such a great evening, all done remotely via zoom along with Tasty Duck's owners, that there have been requests for a repeat.

So here we go! 
January 25th 7:00-8:30pm
Celebrating the Lunar New Year with Peking Duck & Wines from Johnson Estate

More details are found on Cornell's website HERE.

Time Posted: Dec 22, 2023 at 6:50 PM Permalink to Permalink
Jennifer Johnson
November 25, 2023 | Jennifer Johnson

The Perfect Christmas Gift - Legends of the Chautauqua-Erie Grape Belt

Dear Reader,
This just-released, highly-illustrated 132-page book is a perfect Christmas gift from Western NY.  Most especially for those who have happy memories of living in this region, where October's grape aromas are an essential part of fall, and whose grape industry also created the beautiful agricultural vistas of vineyards and the historic villages that line Route 20, creating a special sense of place.

Located in the center of the world's largest Concord grape belt, Johnson Estate's story is included in this book.

It was when I was in my early thirties, that I realized that I was drawn to historic buildings and landscape architecture, which together create a "sense of place". Every time my husband, Fred Johnson, and I moved, I wanted to find an old house and enjoy that city’s unique sense of place. And when we lived in Australia, I was able to complete a master’s degree in historic preservation.  Fred and I like to tell this "quick" story to guests: “We have been married for over 41 years and Fred's career, working for international food companies including Frito-Lay and Chiquita Banana, explains why our son was born in Australia and our daughter in Canada. It explains why they learned Spanish on a banana plantation in Panama.  And why our move to the Johnson family farm and winery in 2013 after our children had finished college, was move number fourteen.  We have now lived in WNY longer than anywhere else.”

After moving into the 200-year-old farmhouse next door to the winery, I discovered the WNY Heritage Magazine, and quickly began to appreciate the region’s unique sense of place. I learned that it was the generations of families who had worked in the grape industry - growing, processing, or delivering grapes - who had created its unparalleled and beautiful agricultural vistas of vineyards and the historic villages along the shores of Lake Erie.  I loved having issues of the magazine with John Thomas Slater’s articles about the region in the Tasting Room – even if that meant purchasing 200 copies for Wine Club members, visitors to the winery, and travel writers! As a result, I was happy to join Author John Thomas Slater and Editor/Publisher, Doug DeCroix, in supporting the publication of this special book of the region's stories and making it available to our growers, residents, and visitors.

The book is the result of over a decade of collaborative research by a network of dedicated historians and archivists working with author John Thomas Slater. This special publication, of 132 pages, shares the rich and evocative stories of the vineyards, farms, wineries and people that have made up this unique viticultural region since the early 1800s. 

So, open a bottle, pour yourself a glass of wine, and enjoy these stories about "our special place".

Jennifer Johnson

Time Posted: Nov 25, 2023 at 8:52 AM Permalink to The Perfect Christmas Gift - Legends of the Chautauqua-Erie Grape Belt Permalink
Jennifer Johnson
November 9, 2023 | Jennifer Johnson

Estate's Sparkling Traminette - Selected for 2023 Alumni Wine Collection - Cornell Alumni Affairs

We are happy to share with you the news that Cornell Alumni Affairs was selected Johnson Estate's Sparkling Traminette to be included in their 2023 Alumni Wine Collection!  Johnson Estate's prosecco-like Sparkling Traminette (made with Estate-grown Traminette , which was developed by Cornell University) is the first sparkling wine to be included in this annual collection of wines by the Cornell Alumni Affairs. Read more here about the 2023 Cornell Alumni selections and the artists.

Sold Out in Three Days!
The good news/bad news - our Sparkling Traminette "SOLD OUT" three days after Cornell's release of the Collection.  We couldn't believe it, but due to a too conservative level of inventory, Cornell purchasers did indeed buy all of Sparkling Traminette! But yes, here's the same vintage of Sparkling Traminette available with its traditional label.

Warm Regards,
Fred Johnson (Cornell '75 & MBA '77) & Jennifer (MBA '79)

The Johnson Family - Four Generations at Cornell

It's easy to write that title, but it's challenging to summarize a 100+ year old story that begins with an orphan from England who entered Cornell in the fall of 1895 after immigrating from Canada. The Cornell Alumni Magazine does it well in this article:  "It Began with a Cornellian".


Time Posted: Nov 9, 2023 at 1:49 PM Permalink to Estate's Sparkling Traminette - Selected for 2023 Alumni Wine Collection - Cornell Alumni Affairs Permalink
Jennifer Johnson
September 15, 2023 | Jennifer Johnson

Johnson Estate - a New Harvest Host & A Small World Story

Yes, Johnson Estate has just become a Harvest Host for those traveling in RVs.
This was recommended by a customer this summer.  Signing up in late August was a simple and straightforward exercise and led to quick reservations by those traveling through Western NY.

And here's the Small World Story (I think that there must be many in the RV world):
Jennifer's brother, Skip Schroeder, has an RV and is now travelling with his wife, heading west from Virginia. Two days ago, they were parking their RV in Louisville, Kentucky and a neighboring RV pulled in from NYS. Naturally, the two RV owners began to talk. The NY couple was from the Buffalo area. And of course, my brother asked if they knew a small town called Westfield.And their answer:

"Of course we know Westfield. That's where our favorite winery, Johnson Estate Winery, is located.
In fact, we have some Johnson Estate wine in the RV - would you like to come and have a glass?"

Here's a toast to your small world stories as you travel!

Jennifer & Fred Johnson

Time Posted: Sep 15, 2023 at 5:58 AM Permalink to Johnson Estate - a New Harvest Host & A Small World Story Permalink
Jennifer Johnson
September 15, 2023 | Jennifer Johnson


FLIGHT, Outdoor Tasting Venue

on the Chancellor Green adjacent to the winery
OPEN September and October
Fridays & Saturdays - 11am - 5pm
Sundays - 11am - 3pm

Join us for flights or glasses of wine
and seasonally-curated cheese and charcuterie boards!
Open in September and
Time Posted: Sep 15, 2023 at 5:51 AM Permalink to FLIGHT Permalink
Jennifer Johnson
July 17, 2023 | Jennifer Johnson

FLIGHT, the Estate's Outdoor Tasting Venue


Here's a little information about the Boards prepared for our guests at Johnson Estate - the ones pictured above are intentionally created with some different foods to pair well with certain wines. Our goal is to provide guests with the opportunity to sample three different wines (one doesn't get that even at an elegant dinner party!) and pair them with a variety of different foods.

This year, FLIGHT is featuring cheeses regionally made by Goot Essa, an Amish-owned cooperative located in Howard, PA. Their production of artisanal, small-batch cheeses using milk from the animals - cows, sheep, and goats - on their farms. The Boards also feature goat cheeses from Old Chatham Creamery, Groton, NY as well Lively Run.

What better way to enjoy local produce from Western NY & PA. The Boards include seasonal fruits and vegetables - we had strawberries in June and cherries until mid-July. They were accompanied by sugar snap peas and sliced cucumbers. Now the blueberries are in full force - and a local delicious force that must be tried! Local peaches will soon join the board. Each plays a role in providing a palate cleanser or pairing with the selected wines and other foods on the Board.

Each cheese and charcuterie board is prepared depending on not only your choice of wines, as well as your preferences for food (we can make sure that the boards are gluten-free, for example). The Board that we prepare to pair with sparkling wines includes a Smoked White Fish Dip; a "perfect pairing" with our Sparkling Traminette. Rose wines might include goat cheese with Quince Paste, another "perfect pairing" from our perspective.

Time Posted: Jul 17, 2023 at 5:56 PM Permalink to FLIGHT, the Estate's Outdoor Tasting Venue Permalink
Jennifer Johnson
April 27, 2023 | Jennifer Johnson

What Sheila Said About Dry Rose of Pinot Noir

Jennifer has a dear friend from high school, Sheila M., who still lives in Virginia. Now retired, she and her husband have been able to visit the winery and farm. And she has discovered some favorites amongst our portfolio. Here's what she said when she  first ordered a case of Dry Rosé two years ago: 

"Okay. I surrender to the Dry Rosé of Pinot Noir.  All three bottles I ordered are gone.  Hence, I just ordered another case this afternoon. It is really good.  I usually do not drink rosé at all but this one just goes with everything ... or nothing at all!".

Thank you Miss Sheila for these kind words about one of our favorites!

Time Posted: Apr 27, 2023 at 3:08 PM Permalink to What Sheila Said About Dry Rose of Pinot Noir Permalink

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Keep up to date on the latest wine releases, events, and promotions!
View Past Newsletters.