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.
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.
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".
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.
Fred Johnson (Cornell '75 & MBA '77) & Jennifer (MBA '79)
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".
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
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!
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