Hudson Valley Vintners & Wineries Launch HudsonValleyWineCountry.org

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As a result of a matching grant from the New York Wine & Grape Foundation through its Regional Branding Initiative, and spearheaded by collaborative energies of the Shawangunk Wine Trail (Ulster and Orange Counties) and Dutchess Wine Trail (Dutchess County), HudsonValleyWineCountry.org seeks to bring recognition to the region which is the oldest wine region in America by using the tag line "The Roots of American Wine."

Many people don't realize the award-winning quality and diversity of wine that is produced in the Hudson Valley. We hope that through the development and use of hudsonvalleywinecountry.org, people will gain a better understanding of the history and uniqueness of our wine region.

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The year was 1677, when the French Huguenots planted the first vines on the hillsides of the Hudson Highlands and started the tradition of growing grapes and winemaking that continues today. And today, some 330 years later, the vintners and wineries of the Hudson Valley launched hudsonvalleywinecountry.org a website that seeks to present this historic wine region together with its wealth of natural beauty, outdoor activities, historic sites, and culinary treasures of farms and restaurants.

The result of a matching grant from the New York Wine & Grape Foundation through its Regional Branding Initiative, and spearheaded by collaborative energies of the Shawangunk Wine Trail (Ulster and Orange Counties) and Dutchess Wine Trail (Dutchess County), HudsonValleyWineCountry.org seeks to bring recognition to the region which is the oldest wine region in America by using the tag line "The Roots of American Wine."

"Many people know of the Long Island and the Finger Lakes wine regions in New York, but the hidden treasure and history of the Hudson Valley Wine Region often goes un-noticed" said Phyllis Feder, co-owner of Clinton Vineyards in Clinton Corners. "Hudsonvalleywinecounty.org will be a tremendous resource for information and conversation about this most historic region."

Divided in many ways between the East side and West side of the Hudson River, hudsonvalleywinecountry.org seeks to unite the region with several unique features. Visitors will be able to explore the many wineries through their online listings, taking a virtual tour of the region's viticultural bounty. Then, utilizing the Trip Planner feature, one can plan a visit to several or all of the wineries, with the website returning explicit turn by turn driving directions. Eventually, the Trip Planner will include restaurants, bed & breakfasts and hotels, historic sites, farms and many other attractions making it an invaluable resource for planning a wine country excursion. Other features of the website include a history of grape and wine-growing in the area, information on modern-day viticulture and links to the Hudson Valley Grape Grower's Association website, plans for the future Hudson Valley Wine & Culinary Center and a wide variety of related and associated links such as Travel and Tourism Agencies, local attractions, dining and accommodations. It also includes a social network site http://www.hvwine.ning.com where there is more information, discussions and an internet chat room available to talk about Hudson Valley Wines.

"Many people don't realize the award-winning quality and diversity of wine that is produced in the Hudson Valley. We hope that through the development and use of hudsonvalleywinecountry.org, people will gain a better understanding of the history and uniqueness of our wine region." says Susan Wine of Rivendell Winery in New Paltz and Vintage New York™. "As agri-tourism is growing in popularity, and winery visitation tops the agri-tourism industry in New York State, people need a full featured resource to plan their trips. We are hoping to make HudsonValleyWineCountry.org that resource."

With over 32 wineries (and growing!), home to Brotherhood, America's Oldest Winery (Washingtonville) and Benmarl Winery at Slate Hill Vineyard, America's Oldest Vineyard (Marlboro), Hudson Valley Wine Country begins 45 miles north of New York City and extends as far north as Saratoga, New York. It's the closest wine region to New York City, New Jersey, Vermont, Connecticut and Massachusetts.

Visit hudsonvalleywinecountry.org - "The Roots of American wine"

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DEBBIE GIOQUINDO
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