Winemaker spotlight: An interview with Chris Stamp; Head winemaker and president of Lakewood Vineyards
Lakewood Vineyards is a beautiful vineyard and winery located in the Finger Lakes of New York. A family vineyard, the Stamps have been making wine since 1988. We caught up with their head winemaker, Chris Stamp, to learn more about his wines and what inspires him.
- What inspired you to create your collection of wines? Each of our wines has a different story and source of inspiration. In the end I think I can boil it all down to us trying to find the most exciting and delicious way to present what we grow here in the Finger Lakes. Sometimes it turns out to be a very traditional interpretation, like our classic style of Chardonnay. Other times we burn the playbook and take things in entirely new directions, like our Glaciovinum (Delaware Ice Wine), or our Prosecco style Cayuga White (Candeo).
- Are there other winemakers you look up to and why? There are a good number of winemakers I look up to. Approaches to winemaking are many, but one thing is true of them all: To do it really well, it takes regular old hard work. When I taste a really well made wine, I know someone has put in a lot of effort as well as skill. When I see that, I respect it.
- What’s your favorite recipe and do you have a favorite wine to pair it with? My favs are mostly simple recipes with no more than a handful of ingredients. My wife Liz makes this awesome pasta salad she calls “Pasta Shmasta”. Paired with dry Riesling, it’s killer good.
- Someone very special is coming over for dinner- which wine do you serve? I would serve their favorite. The tastes of our guest and the meal being served will dictate the wine selection. But you’re really asking is “What wine am I most proud of” right? Like my kids, I love them all equally.
- What’s your favorite place you’ve traveled to? Spain. Partly because of the people there and partly because of the immersive food and wine culture. The scenery is nothing to sneeze at either
- If you had any advice for someone who wanted to create wine what would you tell them? I would certainly encourage them to get a 5 gallon carboy, a couple books and have at it. But, I would caution them not to be deluded into thinking the wine business is actually romantic. It is a job you can love, but you better love working 7 days a week. Real winemaking is pretty light on romance.
- What did you want to be when you were a kid? Probably a super hero or something. I don’t remember because it was soooo long ago.
- What is your favorite part about living in the Finger Lakes region? The warm days and cool nights of our perfect Summers! Oh, and Riesling.
- If you weren’t in the wine industry, what would you do as your career? I’m pretty sure I’d be making some kind of fermented food, be it beer , sausage or sauerkraut I’ve always been intrigued by the fermentation process and how it transforms and preserves food.
- What do you like to do for fun when you aren’t working? I have a big garden and a small airplane.
We had our first post-Covid visit from our longtime German partner, Kespelher Wine Shippers, since 2019. Export director Julia Felde visited us and updated us on the pre-sale. We look forward to receiving some fantastic wines in the fall from Wwe. Dr. H. Thanisch, Karl Erbes, Dr. Wagner, Koster-Wolf and Seebrich.
Red, White, and Bubbly!
We don’t have a blue wine, but we do have some great domestic options to celebrate Independence Day with!
Red- Trombetta Gap’s Crown Pinot Noir: A wine with structure and bright acid. Lush fruit on the palate and notes of dark blue and black fruit. Great to pair with grilled meats. White- 3 Pillars Chardonnay: A Carneros Chardonnay with characteristics of fresh minerality yet balanced profile while coupled with a vibrant acidity, the wine shows flavors and aromas of ripe stone fruit. Generous mouthfeel and lingering finish. Pair with crab-cakes or other seafood. Bubbly: Lakewood Candeo: Prosecco style, off-dry frizzante white wine. Crisp, bubbly, and refreshing. Perfect wine to sip during the fireworks!
New Wholesaler Updates
We are excited to announce that you can now find our wines in both Arizona and South Carolina. In Arizona we will be working with Classico Wine Importers in Tempe. We are pairing up with Uva & Grape in Hanahan, SC. This means you can now find our wines in Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Georgia, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Virginia, Washington DC, and West Virginia.
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