Insider Diaries—Finger Lakes Blog

Category - Foodies

Traveling on a budget? Or simply want to give your wallet a break? Ontario County has plenty of groovy things to do that are free (or pretty darn close). From art demonstrations and live music to yoga on a farm and Pilates in a castle, here are ten super-fun Finger Lakes freebies. 

Perhaps you have come to the Finger Lakes to explore our world-famous Rieslings and our award-winning farm-to-table fare. That’s all well and good, but let’s face it, sometimes a cold beer and a hefty burger are exactly what the vacation doctor calls for, with a big side of local culture. From re-purposed shotgun shells turned into lighting fixtures to free legal advice from town supervisors, here are some of the best off-the-beaten-path watering holes, dive bars and neighbor joints in the Finger Lakes where you can easily feel like a regular.

10 things to do in the Finger Lakes this winter

Friday, January 6, 2017 3:00 PM by Jake Banas

When winter weather comes to the northeast, a few misguided folk flock to the south but they don't know what they're missing! While the south may be warmer during the winter, there are plenty of ways to escape, relax and rejuvenate right here in the Finger Lakes that you would miss out on.

Sometimes you go to a bar or restaurant for a drink and try something new and wonder, where did that come from? That happened to me recently when I was at Lake Drum Brewing in Geneva, trying a flight of hard ciders from the region. One in particular stood out. It was a pleasantly spicy and alluring ginger cider, sweet but not cloying, and it tasted great with the popcorn I was eating. I could imagine it tasting even better with some Chinese food. I was thrilled when I discovered that the producer, Star Cider, is just a few miles away in Clifton Springs.

With purple fire hydrants dotting the downtown streets and vineyards defining its hills and valley, the village of Naples takes its grapes, and grape pies, very seriously. These inky purple pies are the unofficial mascot of the community, sold at roadside stands and at farm markets during harvest season and at small retail shops throughout the year. There's even a local pizzeria that has a grape pie pizza on its dessert menu.

For over 50 years and counting...the great Naples Grape Festival has transformed the quaint, peaceful village of Naples, NY into the center of the universe for one amazing weekend in September.