Warwick County and Martha’s Vineyard are the notorious stomping grounds for New Yorkers looking to get away on the weekends for a bit of vino and country air. While the wineries in these areas are undoubtedly idyllic for wine tasting, there are many vineyards closer to the city that offer similar experiences. Torne Valley Vineyards in Rockland County, New York is less than an hour away from midtown Manhattan, and VPM’s fall festivity pick of the week.
Since first opening its gates just shy of three years ago, Torne Valley Vineyards has become a wine oasis for upstate locals, as well as city dwellers lucky enough to have heard about this hidden gem. Its versatile atmosphere offers fun and friendly areas for families and large groups to wine taste, dine, and partake in workshops, quiet grounds for more intimate affairs, and eloquent spaces for weddings and private events. Whether aiming to host a majestic event in a 140-year-old Victorian mansion or to round up some friends for a day of stomping grapes and sipping away work week worries à la “I Love Lucy” style, Torne Valley Vineyards is certainly worth a visit.
Easy accessibility from the city paired with affordable wine tastings and workshops make this winery stand out. Testimonials from their regulars reinstate some reasons as to why we like it best. Joyce Gotlieb feels, “I learned more about pairing in one night than I have on the Food Network all year,” while Jeannette Rice explains, “We never would have believed a place this lovely and secluded could be located so close to New York City.”
Opened in 2011 by brothers Jon and Stephen France, Torne Valley Vineyards became the first vineyard ever established in Rockland County. An array of wines from sweet Rieslings to dry Cabernets are available throughout the fall.
Take the train from Penn Station for a 50 minute train ride. Beat the traffic and get a head start with your own bottle for the ride up.
For those seeking a more scenic route, take the New York State Thruway, across the Tappan Zee Bridge. Estimated drive is an hour and fifteen minutes (without any traffic).