PENN YAN, NY – July 23, 2012 – With August just days away, leading cool-climate Finger Lakes wine estate, FOX RUN VINEYARDS, is gearing up for its TWENTIETH GLORIOUS GARLIC FESTIVAL. For Scott Osborn, owner of New York’s Fox Run, the festival (August 4-5) represents a major milestone for the winery.
“Twenty years ago, the previous owners of Fox Run had the good thinking to host an August garlic festival. They recognized early on that our Finger Lakes climate was ideal for Northern European varieties of hard neck garlic. When we purchased the winery in 1993, it was an easy decision to maintain the tradition. As a fledgling wine estate, we celebrated our first garlic harvest in 1994, with just a handful of garlic aficionados. In early August of that year, my good friend and chef, Tony Gullace, packed up his knives and arrived from Rochester for the occasion - quickly whipping up all manner of garlicky dishes in our winery kitchen. We even experimented with garlic gelato. Our casual gathering of hardy souls, sampled and tasted, matching our young estate wines to many of these deeply flavorful, but fiery dishes, relishing the pleasures of an abundant garlic harvest, while taking a well-deserved breather from tending our ripening vines. That special day marked the continuation of a beautiful Fox Run tradition.”
“Every year forward, our festival has grown, evolving into a spectacular August happening with thousands of visitors attending each weekend day. This year, the festival represents so much for us to celebrate. 2012 is an historic year – after almost two decades, we finally became a family-owned estate. It also marks the launch of our exciting Riesling Geology Series, with the first of these signature Rieslings coming from Fox Run’s Lake Dana Vineyard. And Hedonia, our first White Port, has quickly taken off. Truly, we are in the thick of a deeply interesting and exciting phase.”
Just as Vitas vinifera grapes thrive in the cool-climate of the Finger Lakes – so do these specialty garlic varieties. And for those in the know, the Finger Lakes appellation is prized for its extraordinary varieties. The Fox Run Glorious Garlic Festival will feature varieties ranging from Hungarian Topset, German White, Ukrainian Red to Purple Understreak, and in between - too many varieties to mention here. Garlic producers will be selling the heavenly bulbs by the pound, in braids and wreaths. For hungry visitors strolling through the festival, garlic-laced treats will be available to purchase. Chef Gullace returns this year, creating a festival menu with items ranging from heirloom tomato gazpacho, roasted corn with garlic aioli - to garlic fries and white garlic pizza. Visitors can pair these offerings with a diverse selection of Fox Run Vineyards wines, with recommended matches that will stand up well to the heady hard neck infusion.
Prior to the weekend festival, there will be a preview concert on the grounds of the winery, slated for Thursday, August 2. Vancouver’s premier Celtic band, The Town Pants will perform that evening at 6. Starting at 5, Fox Run’s wines-by-the-glass will be available to purchase, matched to another Chef Gullace garlic-inspired menu. The concert is free of charge and visitors are invited to bring lawn chairs for a summer evening under the stars.
The two days of the festival, overlooking the pristine waters of Seneca Lake, will include cooking demonstrations from Chef Gullace and his staff on Saturday. (Chef Gullace owns several restaurants in the Rochester area, including Max Rochester, Max of Eastman Place, Max Chophouse, Max at High Falls and Max at The Gallery.) As Osborn says, “We are simply delighted that Tony is bringing his great culinary talents and spirited presence to the festival. It is simply a joy to celebrate this twentieth event together.”
There will be ample opportunities to meet the area’s top garlic growers and food producers. And on Sunday, August 5, Chef Gullace will be joined by Chef John McNabb, of Knapp Vineyard Restaurant, who will be conducting a cooking demonstration highlighting Uranium Red garlic scapes. Several garlic growers and experts will conduct lectures, offering garlic lore, advice and tips to the first-time grower. Over 30 artisan vendors and specialty farms and food producers will be on hand, selling their designs and natural, organic products. Glassblowers from the Corning Museum of Glass will be conducting demonstrations both days of the festival, throughout each day. Music for the entire family is also one of the many highlights the festival offers. Saturday kicks off with classic rock from Bob and Dee, followed by Virginia Schwartz on fiddle. On Sunday, the soul jazz trio, Paradigm Shift and the acoustic rock’n’roll group, Castle Street Band, will round out the musical side. (A complete list of vendors and the schedule is online at http://www.foxrunvineyards.com/events-garlicfestival.asp.)
Dedicated to sustainable practices in the vineyard and cellar, Fox Run adheres to a low impact agricultural philosophy – carefully protecting the diverse ecosystem present in the vineyards and safeguarding the water purity of Seneca Lake.
With a production of 15,000 cases annually, Fox Run Vineyards has 50 acres planted with Riesling, Chardonnay, Gewurztraminer, Lemberger, Cabernet Franc and Pinot Noir. Current releases include Riesling, Reserve Riesling, Chardonnay, Reserve Chardonnay, Lemberger and Pinot Noir. Fox Run also produces a Meritage - blended from Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc plus a Blanc de Blancs sparkler made from estate Chardonnay. There are several wood-aged fortified wines - including a Tawny and Ruby-style Port. New on the scene and is Hedonia - a White Port made entirely from Traminette grapes. The Riesling Geology Series will be launching over the next several months.