Thursday, September 18, 2008
I'm a big supporter of Michigan wines...Rieslings in particular. So, when given the opportunity to visit the Finger Lakes region of New York ... another excellent Riesling region ... I was so excited. My step-mom was headed that way to attend a fiber show, and she invited me to ride along. Additionally, my dad had prepared a list of genealogical items that he needed research. Wine and research...two of my favorite things.
The eight-ten hour trip brought us into Geneseo County -- the left ring finger of the "Finger Lakes" region. While my step-mom worked her booth at the county fairgrounds, I went in search of libraries, museums, cemeteries and other historic sites. With pen and paper in hand (and a roll of dimes and quarters for the microfilm and copy machines), I dug in trying to fill in gaps in the family tree. I searched through archives, and platt books. I read through newspaper archives. I took photos of no-longer existing communities, walked through rows of gravestones at the cemetery and finally met up with a group of local historians at a town hall and found some interesting family references in old school attendance logs.
I wish my search for wine has been as successful as the family history. Turns out that the best lakes in the region for the wine trails are on the right hand...miles and miles away. There were two new wineries in the area -- but by the time I got done at the libraries, they were closed. We did find a great restaurant which served local wine -- Dr. Frank's -- which was so impressive, we ate there two nights in a row.
All in all, the trip did whet my appetite to tour the entire region some day -- maybe in 2009?!?!?!