How wine tasting has changed because of COVID


WATKINS GLEN, NY (WETM) – The weather is getting warmer, and COVID restrictions are slowly lifting, so many people are making plans to visit one of the many gorgeous vineyards in Watkins Glen.

But a lot has changed since pre-COVID times, and you might need to plan your trip a little differently.

“It certainly changed dramatically,” said Liz Stamp, Partner, and Manager at Lakewood Vineyards. “The most obvious thing is masks wearing, but the less obvious thing is for people not on our side of the bar might not realize that people have to be seated when they are tasting wine, that is still in place, and there are certainly personal distance requirements, and so that has really altered the number of people that we can host for wine tasting at any given time.”

They are still facing restrictions on how many guests that they can serve. Before COVID, you could drop by anytime that they were open, and chances were that you could all come in. Now, they recommend that your party calls ahead of time to guarantee a spot.

“With the reduced capacity and the fact that we can only seat people that have arrived together, that are in their own pod at a tasting space, it’s certainly decreased the number of people that we can host at any given time,” Stamp said. “But I think it has made the intimacy of the tasting a little bit better, so we have a little more one-on-one situation, that kind of ratio is nice.”

“We had such a beautiful summer last summer, we are keeping our fingers crossed that we have another one,” Stamp said looking towards the future. “And if that is the situation, there is a lot of space outside for people to enjoy some fresh air, and they are not as uncomfortable waiting for a tasing.”

For the full list of restrictions for Indoor Dining for Licensed On-Premise establiments click here.

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