New Saratoga Winery Tasting Early Success
If you think vineyards and wineries were only for the Finger Lakes and Hudson Valley regions of New York, Rich and Tara Nimmo of Saratoga have something to say to you: Think Again. The Nimmo's recently opened The Saratoga Winery and Tasting Room in Milton, and judging by the success they have had so far, their wines can compete with the best of them.
Loving everything about wine, the Nimmo's had been making their own wine as a hobby for over a decade with grapes from the Finger Lakes, and they knew that eventually they would open up their own winery. That dream came true on October 1, 2009 when they opened the doors on their winery and tasting room. And they haven't looked back since.
At The Saratoga Winery and Tasting Room guests are able to purchase wine by the bottle, as well as experience a variety of wines at one time by taking part in a tasting at their Adirondack style bar. Currently they offer 14 wines, with a selection that includes everything from traditional Merlots and Chardonnays to their signature wine Melomel, made with fruit and honey. Within a few months this number will grow to 18.
"The community response has been great. We really took off much faster and stronger than we had thought. We have sold almost three times the amount of wine that we originally projected," offers Tara. "We have a nice following of local customers that make weekly trips in for a glass of wine and to stock their wine racks."
And visits to the winery haven't been confined to just locals. In the short time they've been open guests have been from all over the country and Canada, and as far away as Alaska. These guests range from those who have never stepped foot in a winery before, to those who make regular pilgrimages to their favorite vineyards.
"We want everyone who walks through our doors to feel invited, whether they are a wine expert or have never even had a sip," Tara said, reassuring those who have a limited amount of wine knowledge that they will be welcome.
The first 6 months of business have been so successful that the Nimmo's are already looking at new ways to cater to their customers. An additional tasting room has been added on to the winery, and plans for an outdoor deck are underway. They are looking at hosting local gatherings like ladies night, open mic night and other fun events.
Best of all, the Nimmo's are very active in the local Saratoga community, even switching over to locally grown grapes from a Greenfield vineyard next year. They do all they can to support regional businesses and artists, including stocking their gift shop only with products made locally like cheese, baked goods, peanut butter, Saratoga chips, maple syrup and hand crafted wine accessories. They are also working with local organizations on fundraising for those in need. This includes relationships with Double H Ranch, Just Drive, Hope in the Boat and other private fundraisers for local families and individuals in need.
"We have become involved in building a Hospice house for Greenfield and plan to host a food drive in November and a toy drive in December. We are always open to anything involving our community," continues Tara, with her passion for helping others just as obvious as her passion for wine.
As you might expect, The Saratoga Winery is not in the middle of downtown. It's off the path a bit in Milton. Just take Route 29 East (that's the corner of Broadway where the Starbucks is) about 3 1/2 miles. There at 462 Route 29, and you should see the sign out front. And this summer the folks at Horsin' Around Trolley are making it even easier to visit the winery. Starting in early May, there will be a trolley from downtown to the winery on Wednesday nights (for ladies night) and Fridays (for music and pizza). At the end of May The Saratoga Winery will be partnering up with Cabin Creek Farm to offer tours on Saturdays that include wine tasting and trips to see retired racehorses like Zippy Dippy and Thunder Rumble.
So the next time someone suggests a trip out to the Finger Lakes for some wine tasting, let them know that you know a little gem right here in Saratoga that makes wine that is just as good as any they'll find out west. Save money on gas and hotel, and use it to purchase great tasting wine and support a local business that supports local businesses and the community. It will be an experience that everyone will enjoy.
Interested in more local wineries? Check out the Adirondack Winery up in Lake George.