Winemaking - Heart & Hands Wine Company
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Where It Begins


We believe that great wine begins in the vineyard.  A vineyard’s geology, soil, and microclimate lay the foundation for the vines. Thoughtful selections and plantings of rootstock and vines harness the potential of the land.  Sustainable farming and viticultural practices nurture the vines and produce exceptional fruit for winemaking.


Our estate vineyard is located on an ideal site on the Onondaga limestone escarpment, on a gentle slope in near proximity to Cayuga Lake.  The vineyard is sustainably farmed without the use of insecticides or herbicides.


We also partner with several other like-minded winegrowers on Seneca, Cayuga, and Skaneateles lake.  Our grower partners have deep knowledge of their terroir, and the willingness to go the extra mile to carefully tend the vines and cultivate exceptional fruit.

Harvest and Vinification


At harvest, we are dedicated to preserving the beauty of the fruit, and bringing forth the essence of the growing season.  Grapes are harvested by hand in the cool early morning hours.  We then hand sort the fruit, to allow us to select only grape clusters and berries of exceptional quality.


Our Pinot Noir is fermented in small open top fermenters and punched down by hand twice daily.  Fermentations last around 2 weeks, after which point the grapes are gently pressed and moved into barrels using gravity flow techniques.


Our Riesling is destemmed, gently basket pressed, and then fermented in small stainless steel tanks.  Fermentation times vary between 50 and 90 days in cool tanks to preserve the elegance of the fruit.



Aging and Blending


After the fruit from each vineyard is separately fermented, it is aged in separate tanks or barrels which allows us to gain a deeper understanding of the unique sense of place inherent in each vineyard.


Our Pinot Noir is aged in 100% Francois Freres French oak barrels. Our winemaker carefully considers which forest of origin, grain tightness, toast levels and percentage of new oak will be optimal for each lot of wine based upon the characteristics of the fruit and growing season.


Our Riesling is aged in stainless steel, with many small tanks isolating single vineyard selections, as well as different lots of wine from within each vineyard.


From these vessels, we then either create harmonious blends, or small bottlings of single vineyard selections to highlight exceptional lots of wine.