Finger Lakes Farmstead cheese and cream

Finger Lakes Wine and Cheese

Fine Finger Lakes CheeseWine and cheese are old-world foods that have gone together for centuries. The Finger Lakes region of New York is no stranger to great combinations of wine and cheese. Sadly, as the wineries have gotten busier with tastings, they usually only offer crackers or popcorn to accompany their wines. That old-world connection has been lost. Bring yourself back to older traditions and calmer pace of country living by picking up an array of cheese to bring with you as you visit the Seneca Lake wineries.

General rules for pairing wine and cheese

First rule, there are no definite rules. Pair whatever makes you and your mouth happy. However, a nice and safe way to approach pairing wines with cheese is by strength of flavor. Stronger cheese supports the flavors of stronger wines. A full flavored Cabernet Sauvignon can make a mild provolone seem bland. Likewise, a sharp cheddar can render a mild Riesling flavorless. A final rule suggests that things that grow together, go together. Therefore, our fine Finger Lakes Cheese should be paired with Finger Lakes wine.

Suggested regional pairings of Finger Lakes Wine and Cheese



Gouda - relatively strong with a short aftertaste

Chardonnay (aged in oak) - a complex white wine with buttery and oak flavors strong enough to embrace the Gouda's robust flavor

Gewurztraminer - an aromatic spicy white wine

Merlot - a robust red wine with hints of smoke and spice

Cheddar - local Amish product, classic cheese flavor and texture in white

Riesling (dry or semi-dry) - a crisp white wine that is the pride of the Finger Lakes.

Cabernet Franc - A dry red wine with nice fruit character. A well established Finger Lakes red.

Cheddar with Garlic - another local Amish product with the classic white Cheddar flavor and the irresistable taste of garlic

Gewurztraminer - an aromatic spicy white wine

Cabernet Sauvignon - a full bodied red wine with enough character to stand up to the garlic

Colby - a soft, smooth, white cheese with a mild buttery flavor made fresh in the Finger Lakes by Amish cheesemakers

Cayuga White - A semi-sweet white wine with smooth subtle flavors

Red blend table wines - Many of the wineries feature a red blended table wine that is softer and milder than the others. Often called a reserve or estate red.

Blush (semi-sweet to sweet) - There are many blush wines produced in the Finger Lakes (many are blends of the local Catawba grape) and are plenty soft to accompany Colby.


If you prefer the opinions of expert food and wine critics, feel free to explore:

Gourmet Sleuth wine and cheese pairings

Travel Envoy - Wine and Cheese Parties

About Wine and Cheese combinations

The Wine Man talks cheese

Cheese and Wine Party

Cowlick Farm • 8865 Rte. 414 • Lodi, NY 14860 • (607) 582-6611 •

Open Mon, Fri, Sat: 10:00AM to 9:00PM and Sun: Noon - 9:00PM