Personal Touch, Environmental Responsibility, Experimentation
At Red Tail Ridge Winery we specialize in limited production wines because we believe that quality is more important than quantity. Keeping our production down allows us to better monitor the details of the wine making process. We produce small-lots (sometimes less than 50 cases) to further preserve and enhance the varietal characteristics that we generate in the vineyard.
We also believe that experimentation is an important step towards unlocking our vineyard’s, and this region’s, potential. We have 21 acres of cool climate varieties: Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Riesling. While you may be most familiar with these cool climate varieties, we are also examining some more obscure red varieties that work well in cooler regions of Europe.
We also produce a series of expressive Riesling styles to uncover the grape’s versatility with varying fermentations, must weights, and vineyard locations. Our Sparkling portfolio includes multiple traditional method styles of Sparkling Teroldego, Blanc de Noirs, and Sparkling Rosé. We also produce a Riesling Pétillant Naturel. In addition, we are currently experimenting with skin-fermented white wine styles utilizing different varieties. Winemaking at RTR will continue to evolve with an edge of curiosity.
We are New York State’s first LEED®- Gold Certified Winery. Our winery building (constructed 2009) runs on geothermal energy for heating, cooling and refrigeration. LEED® stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design and is a third party certification process for green buildings through the U.S. Green Building Council.
Read more about our LEED-® Gold Certification here.
Red Tail Ridge is a 52 acre vineyard and winery located on the western shore of Seneca Lake in the Finger Lakes region of up-state New York. Click here to learn more about the Finger Lakes and our climate for grape growing. Our winery is named after the two nesting pair of hawks who live in the woods surrounding the vineyard. They are our constant companions when we are working on the vines. We are a husband and wife team, so vineyard development, winegrowing, winemaking and management are currently divided up between us, Mike Schnelle (viticulturist) and Nancy Irelan (winemaker) with some helping hands as well.