Wölffer Estate Vineyard is unquestionably a beautiful place. But the creation of it spanned over three decades and required a creative vision, an ability to bring dreams to reality and a great deal of dedicated hard work by many people. Christian Wölffer possessed the vision and, with the meticulous care of his professional team, built this special place – Wölffer Estate Vineyard.
The original parcel of land was a potato farm with an old farmhouse in what is now the middle of the estate. Over the years, as more acres were acquired, paddocks and stables were added and, in 1988, the vineyard was founded. This 55-acre vineyard is part of a 175-acre estate with boarding stables, 30 paddocks, an indoor jumping ring, and a Grand Prix field. Both the stables and winery have a European character and, from these former potato fields, world-class wines have come forth. Wölffer Estate Vineyard is an American winery in the classic European tradition.
Christian Wölffer, Founder
First and foremost, Christian Wölffer was a man with great creative vision and a huge passion for life. Over time he applied both to complete a place where people could visit, enjoy and feel a part of the experience. That place—Wölffer Estate Vineyard & Stables—was the realization of Christian's lifelong dream and a true labor of love.
The quintessential entrepreneur, he was a master at managing an array of international enterprises. His career encompassed investment banking, venture capital, real estate, agriculture, and entertainment parks. But it was the world of wine that captured his heart.
This accomplished Hamburg-born international businessman was most at home at his Eastern Long Island retreat in the heart of the Hamptons. He purchased the land in 1978 as a 14-acre parcel with a farmhouse surrounded by potato fields. By 1987, Christian Wölffer had founded his vineyard near this very site.
Now over 20 years later, Christian's one-time weekend getaway on the East End's South Shore spans more than 170 acres and includes his acclaimed 55-acre Wölffer Estate Vineyard as well as his home, stables, and grazing land for his thoroughbreds. The 100-acre Wölffer Estate Stables, an extraordinary equestrian center used for training, schooling, year-round boarding, and instruction, is an 80-stall facility with the largest indoor riding ring on the East Coast.
After Christian's untimely passing on New Years Eve in 2008, his children Joey and Marc Wölffer and winemaker and partner Roman Roth continue his legacy, producing elegant, fashionable, food-friendly wines and keeping very much alive the extraordinary style and creativity that was Christian's trademark.
Vineyard & Winemaking
Winemaking is the heart of all we do at Wölffer. The process begins in the vines, where Vineyard Manager Richie Pisacano meticulously manages our 55 pristine acres of vines. We grow Merlot, Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and small lots of Trebbiano, Pinot Noir and Vignole. We use sustainable farming practices, and are proud to be among the few vineyards that are certified as sustainable by Long Island Sustainable Winemaking.
Winemaker/Partner Roman Roth makes Wölffer wine using traditional techniques but always with an eye toward innovation. His goals are to make wines that are food-friendly and elegant, and built for longevity. All our wines are made using estate-grown or locally sourced fruit, and our dry white and rosé ciders also are made from New York State apples, sourced from the Halsey Apple Orchard and other growers that meet the Halseys' high standards.
Our beautiful, European-inspired barrel room and winery are part of private tours.
The Tasting Room
The tasting room at our main winery is the center of activity at the estate and also a place of tranquility. It is open seven days a week, providing ample opportunity to enjoy the Wölffer experience. Enveloped in old-world charm, our tasting room's high ceilings are supported with 100-year-old rough beams. A wall of French doors open to our stone terrace where you can savor our wines, converse and listen to music while drinking in the view. Stained glass doors imported from Germany open our Wine Bar, a cozy room that offers seating at a rustic hand-crafted bar made of centuries-old reclaimed wood, a cushioned banquette or rustic high tables, all against a backdrop of bohemian prints, books and old bottles. The Wine Bar can be reserved for private meetings or events.
Tasting flights are served all day long (except during live music events, when in respect to the performers, wine is offered only by the glass or bottle). Flights range in price from $15 to $20 and typically include four wines. Cheese and charcuterie options are available, as well, ranging from $15 to $28. Tours of the vineyard and winery are available, as well, for $15 per person.
Reservations for tastings are required only for parties of 10 or more, and only at 11 a.m., 12 noon or 1 p.m. Note: Reservations will only be held for 15 minutes. Please allow ample time for travel during the Hamptons high season--traffic can be quite heavy at times.
The Wine Stand
Perched atop a slight rise, the charming Wölffer Estate Wine Stand has become the place to be on Friday and Saturday nights, and a popular pitstop on the way to the beach or home to the city. Offering all Wölffer wines and ciders for tastings and purchase, the Wine Stand has a casual ambience with a spectacular view of the vineyard and breathtaking sunsets.
During the warmer months, from May through October, Sunset Fridays and Saturdays offer a relaxed, casual, music-filled Friday or Saturday afternoon into evening. Savor the wines and watch the sun sink behind the vineyard. From 5 p.m. to sunset, live music plays and wines and ciders are available by the glass or bottle. Bring beach chairs or a blanket to sit on, as tables fill up quickly. No outside food or beverage is permitted. No cover charge!
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