Join us on August 31 for this year’s Confluence Dinner, a spirited evening on the Seneca Falls waterfront featuring women producers and artists of the Finger Lakes, including cider makers, chefs, farmers, glassmakers, musicians, and the wine makers featured here.
Featured Winemaker: Liz Leidenfrost
Liz Leidenfrost is a third-generation winemaker and grape grower working on her family farm, Leidenfrost Vineyards, located in Hector New York, in the heart of the Finger Lakes region.
She is the first female winemaker in the family and has literally been born and bred to grow grapes and make wine since she was a tiny little baby. She follows in the footsteps of her father, John Leidenfrost jr. and grandfather John Leidenfrost sr., as they strive to produce the best-quality wine grapes which they sell to neighboring wineries and spectacular small batch, hand crafted wines made from 100% estate grown fruit.
Liz is also a professional burlesque, cabaret and sideshow performer and has been dazzling audiences locally and nation-wide with her troupe Whiskey Tango Sideshow for the past 10 years!
She is very proud to uphold traditional wine making and farming practices, all while working to break the mold in a typically male-dominated field and show that women are powerful, capable and can do anything they set their mind to. From math and science, to mechanical and physical labor, women hold the power to reach out and change this industry for the better!
Featured Winery Owner: Lisa Halgren
Ravine’s Wine Cellars
Ravines Wine Cellars is a boutique winery in an emerging world-class wine region, the Finger Lakes of upstate New York. It is the dream and passion of Morten & Lisa Hallgren, a European Winemaker/Oenologist and his Chef/Foodie wife. Together they have created a small, distinctive winery crafting elegant and food friendly wines using Old World winemaking traditions with New World innovation.
Featured Winemaker: Alexandra Bond
Hector Wine Company and Forge Cellars
Hector Wine Company is a small Finger Lakes winery dedicated to making handcrafted wines of structure and purity. Focusing on select vineyard blocks from family owned Sawmill Creek Vineyards, the wines represent a unique sense of place on the south east side of Seneca Lake in New York State’s Finger Lakes region. With a sustainable focus in the vineyard and an approach to winemaking with minimal intervention, the wines show minerality, balance of acidity, aromatic fruit and intense varietal character.
Alexandra Bond, associate winemaker, works alongside co-owners Jason Hazlitt and Justin Boyette and has worked her way up within Hector Wine Company from assistant to associate on the winemaking team in the nearly 7 years she’s been there. She started her journey with wine at a young age by way of work at restaurants and wine bars in and around New York City. After discovering Finger Lakes wine during her time at the Petrie Court Café and Wine Bar at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, she decided to pursue her passion by moving to the Finger Lakes and getting her hands dirty. After working at several wineries, in vineyards, tasting rooms and cellars, she found herself with the opportunity to join Hector Wine Company in its budding years. She’s since learned how to make wines from her mentor, Justin Boyette, and by travelling to the Southern Rhone and working with French winemaker, Louis Barroul, with whom Justin owns another Finger Lakes winery, Forge Cellars. Alexandra is now in charge of the day to day winemaking, all year round.
Hector Wine Company is, at its most basic, a group of friends who are passionate about making quality wine, working hard, finding beauty and who together make wines that represent the centuries old farm at Sawmill Creek Vineyards.