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Long Island Wine Country had a lot to celebrate about. In fact, 1,300 wine and food enthusiasts, including Gov. Andrew Cuomo, gathered under a festive billowing tent to raise a glass and cheer for 40 years of winemaking at the fourth annual HARVEST East End at McCall Vineyard & Ranch in Cutchogue. The region’s farms, fishermen, 34 local top chefs and 43 vintners showcased the bounty of the land, sea and vines. It was the first year this vinous and edible gala was held on the North Fork and how fitting considering two pioneers were honored for giving rise to one of the world’s most exciting viticultural and culinary destinations: Louisa Hargrave co-founder of Hargrave Vineyards (now Castello di Borghese Vineyard) for planting the first vitis vinifera grapes with her former husband Alex Hargrave, and John Ross, who established Ross’ North Fork restaurant that featured local wines and grown food that helped ignite the farm-to-table movement on the North Fork.
“Put tourism together with the wine industry, and they can grow an entire region,” said Gov. Cuomo. “And that’s what you’re seeing here on the North Fork of Long Island.” See a video of his remarks here.
The master of ceremonies was Joshua Wesson, a leading authority on wine and food pairing, the founder of Best Cellars and author of Williams-Sonoma Food & Wine—A New Look at Flavor that he signed for fans.
And to top it off Out East Foodie has come full circle; it was my first anniversary. Last year’s HARVEST East End was my debut where I was introduced to the edible artisans of the East End. I am humbled and honored to be surrounded by the people who make up the edible landscape of the two forks. This fall our sustainable home Sheridan Green will be complete; a place where like-minded stewards of the land and sea can come together to talk story, enjoy amazing food and drink and share inspiration in a great space. Cheers to all of you and to 40 years of winemaking in Long Island Wine Country.
Visit outeastfoodie for the wine and food celebration.