A Tasting Tour of 1000 Islands

  On the border of northern New York State and Canada, a cluster of 1,864 islands create a region of endless shorelines, epic sunsets, and a unique maritime history. Fifty miles of river islands give this region its name: the Thousand Islands. Stretching downstream from Lake Ontario into the St. Lawrence River, the scenery and seclusion from the mainland have made 1000 Islands a popular getaway for generations. Hot summers in the city have always been “escapable” for visitors from New York City, Syracuse, Chicago, Cleveland and Pittsburgh. In its heyday–approximately 1874 through 1912–grandiose resorts were built for wealthy visitors, and filled with people. (By the way, much of those structures have been restored and still stand.) These days, as the region sees a rebirth in tourism, the Taste 1000 Islands offers yet another reason to visit: a craft beverage trail with seven wineries, three distilleries, and a brewery. Their locations range from mainland, to shoreline to private island; all are unique experiences. Save for a few rocky ones, most of the islands are heavily wooded, spattered with cabins and cottages, exuding a campy mysteriousness. Many of them are small and privately owned–although others, such as Grindstone Island, are larger with paved …

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