The Two Wine Regions of Lake Erie Wine Country
The Lake Erie wine region is a relatively unexplored region. We call it a hidden wine treasure because although it is not well known globally, producers in the area are making good quality wines with indigenous and international grape varieties. The wine country around Lake Erie is divided has two wine regions:
- Southern Lake Erie in the United States
Formerly know as the Chautauqua Wine Trail.
- Northern Lake Erie in Canada
This distinct wine region is officially known as Lake Erie North Shore (& Pelee Island).
Video: The Lake Erie Wine Trail, USA
50 Miles of Wine Country East of the American Rockies
The American Lake Erie wine region is the largest grape growing region east of the Rockies, extending roughly 50 miles from Silver Creek, New York (Chautauqua County) to North East, Pennsylvania. In this huge span there are about 24 commercial and estate wineries producing American and European varietal wines. The American grape varieties that are most popular there are Concord and Niagara. They are sweet and fruity sensations that thrive in the cool weather and loamy soil (combination of sand, silt and clay) and produce very nice, light and crisp wines.
History of the Lake Erie Wine Region
Although this wine region has only just started to thrive in wine tourism, it has a long history of grape production. Lake Erie wine country was formed during the Ice Age. Glaciers descended from the north gouging out trenches and brought with them tremendous quantities of Canadian soil, rocks and boulders. As temperature got warmer the glaciers receded, filling the trenches with glacial melt which formed the Great Lakes and left ridges of soil and gravel (Loam soil) along the Lake Erie shore.
Video: Wineries of the Lake Erie Region
Tour Lake Erie Wine Country in the Fall
Fall is the perfect time of year to visit the Lake Erie Wine Region. Not only is it at the peak of Fall foliage, but it is harvest time. The Lake Erie Wine Country Harvest Wine Festival celebrations run the first two weeks of November, with plenty of great activities and celebrations for wine lovers to enjoy. Check out our article on How to Plan a Wine Tasting Trip then check out this beautiful, off-the-beaten path wine region.
Here Are a Few Top Wineries to Visit in the Lake Erie Wine Region:
6 Mile Cellars
Arrowhead Wine Cellars
Johnson Estate Winery
Mazza Vineyards Winery
Penn Shore Winery
Presque Isle Wine Cellars
Video: Lake Erie Region-Grape Belt Natural History