Did you know that resting along the southern shore of Lake Erie is Wine Country? Yep, right here in Western New York and Pennsylvania rests the largest region of wine country on the east side of the Rocky Mountains! One of the best things to do on Lake Erie is the Lake Erie Wine Trail.
Chautauqua County, the most western area of New York, provides 65% of New York State’s total annual wine. They even sell their wine internationally to 35 different countries!
Now, even though there is plenty to do on Lake Erie’s Grape Belt, our 30,000 acres of vineyards takes the cake! They host every type of wine event you can think of.
You can experience farm-to-table dinner pairings to wine clubs and even harvest celebration weekends! The biggest hit on this stretch of the south shore of Lake Erie is the Lake Erie Wine Trail. Grab your (adult) friends and family and explore 53 miles of wineries.
Don’t forget that New York Rental By Owner has properties just minutes from the Lake Erie Grape Belt and will make your stay convenient and comfortable. View all of our Chautauqua Lake Vacation Rentals for your next stay!
Usually the mention of wine country brings your mind to California’s Napa Valley or France. Pennsylvania and New York state are not typically your first thought–but think again! We have a long running heritage of wineries and vineyards on the east coast.
As the second largest wine region in America, second only to California, our rich history of wineries goes all the way back to the Ice Age!
Yeah, you heard me. The Ice Age. Obviously the wineries didn’t begin back then. However, glaciers once moved through the area dragging along Canadian soil, rocks and boulders to create the perfect environment for vineyards.
The wineries themselves came out to play in the 1950’s and are still here. So come enjoy and the Lake Erie Wine trails!
As you might have guessed, the Lake Erie Grape Belt has a huge collection of vineyards. We took the 23 wineries along the Lake Erie Wine Trail and summarized them for you below. Even if you’re picky about wine, the varieties of wines, styles and tastes vary so greatly that I promise there is a winery just for you!
This winery is named for the sweetness of their wines. With a backdrop of the vineyard and cherry orchards you can truly enjoy their vast array of tasty wines and surround yourself with beauty. As a 250 acre vineyard, and third-generation family farm that has been running since the 1950’s, this winery has strong roots! Plus, if you ever struggle to find their winery just look for Ella! The giant pink elephant stands right by the road. You can’t miss her.
2.6 Mile Cellars is the western most winery on the Lake Erie Wine Trail and resides only 6 miles from Erie, PA. Grab a bottle or a glass and tour the vineyard. You can even have a picnic on this land that has been farmed since 1960. Even their tasting room is cool! It’s in a 100 year old barn that used to house Thoroughbred horses. Their signature wines are aromatic whites, but they have variety too so that the whole party can enjoy visiting 6 Mile Cellars!
Arrowhead Wine Cellars in Pennsylvania prides themselves on growing 14 varieties of European, Native and Hybrid grapes. They have the largest winery gift shop in the area and they own the farmers market adjacent to the winery! They have a huge variety of wines (and some are award winning)!
Arundel Cellars & Brewing Co. have a wide variety of wines ranging from sweet to dry wines. They helped restore the beautiful 19th century barn that resides on the property that was originally used as a cider mill! The “Arundel family” is made up of four separate families, each with their own rich history of making wine. Don’t forget to try out their craft beers while you’re there.
Burch Farms Country Market and Wine Shop is a great winery to take in the beautiful views of Lake Erie while sipping on their specialty fruit wines. They also sell fresh produce and fresh baked goods! Make sure to check out their fruit stand. If you stop by in the summer you can pick your own strawberries and cherries too!
Courtyard Winery is owned by a third-generation fruit farmer with vast knowledge about running a vineyard and winery. Randy met his wife, a California wine grower, and they brought their passion back to Lake Erie in their search for the next great wine. Together they grow, harvest, ferment, barrel-age and bottle all of their wine with spectacular results. Come enjoy their hand-crafted, award-winning wines!
Heritage Wine Cellars was established in 1976 and it is a third-generation owned winery. They’re pride and joy is in their Native-American wines and dry European reds. Their rustic barn is over 200 years old that has a back deck overlooking Lake Erie. They win awards for their delicious wine year after year. So come try some!
Johnson Estate Winery has 300 acres of land and 115 acres of vineyard! They grow 13 types of grapes which leads to a large variety of delicious wines. They pride themselves on their “stewardship” of their farmland and its surrounding acreage. Their goal is not only to use the land but to protect it and its creatures. They also grow Ice Wine which isn’t harvested until mid-winter. The grapes used for Ice Wine are harvested by hand each winter (yes, in the snow)! The grapes that experience this freeze and thaw cycle enhances the grapes flavors. It can only be made by grapes still on the vine and frozen by Mother Nature herself.
Lakeview Wine Cellars is a small boutique winery, and believe it or not, has a stunning lake view! Furthermore, they have an abundant variety of both red and white wines that you can bring out to your picnic overlooking Lake Erie.
Liberty Vineyards & Winery resides in Sheridan, New York and some of the vineyard has been in the family since the 1860s! The farm itself goes back to 1839 and is still owned by the same family. For their tasting flights and wine by the glass you can also purchase delicious crackers, cheeses and other snacks! Their tasting room has a laid back feel where you can wander through their gift shop or just sit and relax with friends!
Mazza Chautauqua Cellars is a combination winery, distillery and brewery! It was the first distillery in the area and they are focused on small-batch, quality craft-distilled products. They even expanded to add on their brewery, Five & 20 Spirits and Brewing which has become a hub for craft beers and spirits! You can also check out the Mazza Vineyard which hosts Pennsylvania’s top selling wine and is internationally recognized!
Merritt Estate Winery is a family-owned and operated winery who has produced award winning wines for the past 42 years. They are famous for their Picnic Pavillion and their Sangria Wine Slush (which has its own food truck)! Come try it out, or let them come to you.
13. Noble Winery
Noble Winery is known for its views and its wines that will please even the pickiest of palettes. They have dry whites, savory dry reds, semi-sweet and sweet reds, pinks and whites. They also have house made slushies! You can bring your own food, or buy from their cheese/meat selections to go with your wine. You can choose to sit at the cozy fireplace inside or outside to enjoy the views of Lake Erie.
Penn Shore Winery and Vineyards is the oldest (and one of the largest) vineyards in Pennsylvania. They have a list of firsts for wineries in PA but they’re also glad to be the first to offer a Pennsylvania champagne back in 1970. They even have a concert series on their back deck. Make a day of it and enjoy this historic winery to the fullest.
Presque Isle Wine Cellars produces award winning, unique wines and has been producing for the past 54 years. They’re a family-owned supply store and winery. They have been growing grapes along the south shore of Lake Erie for the past 100 years. Touring their vineyard with its surrounding woods and waterfalls makes it the top of the list for a beautiful backdrop to your wine tasting experience.
16. Quincy Cellars
Quincy Cellars is a premier winery and special event venue that has been working since their 130 year old barn was erected (it has since been remodelled but it has kept the original beams making it a perfect medley of old and new). With their pond, deck, patio and romantic setting it’s a great place to host your own wedding, anniversary, or birthday celebration!
Sensory Winery & Art Gallery is a contemporary art gallery that hosts a small batch of cult wines that you can’t find anywhere else! With their gallery and wine constantly changing every visit you make will be a different experience. The whole idea of the Sensory Winery & Art Gallery is to blend all of the senses together, with art work, wines, music and videos. Come enjoy this unique experience!
South Shore Wine Company has made its home at the Mazza Vineyards and was originally established by grape-growing pioneers 150 years ago. It’s one of the oldest wine brands in the Lake Erie region. Their historic tasting room is in a gorgeous stone cavern and cellar. Come check it out!
Sparkling Ponds Winery may have switched owners but they haven’t switched wines! They have dedicated themselves to keeping these beloved wines the same. They highly recommend that you come and walk around their vineyard in the fall when the aroma is sweet enough to knock you over.
Willow Creek Winery is nestled into a beautiful 1800’s rustic farmhouse. They offer 20 different wines that are handcrafted on-site. They have everything you could want from their infamous chocolate wines to dry whites, sweet reds and whatever else your heart could desire.
They practice, and exceed, at making traditional wines as well as pushing the limits of winemaking! The vineyard also sells a refreshing slush in the summer months and will provide you with an experience that is laid back, delicious and educational. Be sure to check out their specialty Iced Wine and a unique Pumpkin Wine for the fall months.
Yori Wine Cellars is one of the newest wineries in the area but they produce 25 varieties of top quality wine using their 15 types of grapes from their own family-owned farm (and from some local vineyards). They’re also attached to an Italian restaurant that is celebrating 30 years of business! Make sure to grab some delicious food to go with your bottle of specialty wine.
Now That We’re a Little Tipsy
At the end of the day, there is plenty of wine to go around. If you didn’t know this hamlet of historic family-owned farms, grape growers and viticulturists then now you know!
Now that you know what you want to do, let’s find you a perfect place to stay! New York Rental By Owner has a myriad of rental properties in Chautauqua county. Come check us out! From lake front cottages, to cabins, to condos we have the property you’re looking for. Many are minutes away from Lake Erie Wine Country. Click here to view all Chautauqua Lake rentals.
Come enjoy our vast variety of great wines, views and vineyards here on the south side of Lake Erie where the climate is perfect for producing delicious wines throughout the year.
No Booking Fees!
Direct Communication with the Owner
Browse and book vacation rentals on New York By Owner
NEW YORK’S #1 FASTEST GROWING VACATION RENTAL LISTING SITE!