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Colloca Estate Winery & Lake Effect Vineyard


2019 Fair Haven BAYFEST® - Paella on the BAY-A!

One of New York State’s Best Finger Lakes Wineries Is Not in the Finger Lakes

Here is The Story of the Fair Haven BAYFEST®: PAELLA on the BAY-A

Each year, Spanish paella is cooked on three 42” monster pans that serve over 100 people each on the shores of Little Sodus Bay in Fair Haven. Paella (PIE-A-YA), a traditional Spanish rice dish hailing from Valencia, Spain can be prepared in many ways. Historically considered peasant food, the rice is simply prepared together with chicken and peas or beans or along with local game, such as rabbit in small villages in Spain. In the many variations of the dish, seafood is added along with the local catch of the day.

Here is the story of how Paella came to the Fair Haven Bayfest!

When Oswego, NY native Dr. Chris Colloca traveled to Spain and experienced a neighborhood paella party he immediately thought how much fun it would be to throw a paella feast for friends and family. Thus, the inspiration for the paella party arriving in Central New York. He ordered the huge pans from Spain and commissioned J&A Mechanical in Oswego to build their stands.

The first party was thrown 10 years ago. A decade later, the event has been named, Fair Haven BayFest® Paella on the Bay-a, and draws hundreds of food fanatics from across Central New York and further at Colloca Estate Winery, a pristine 100-acre property on the west side of Little Sodus Bay in Fair Haven, NY that features a tasting room, outdoor wine bar, wood fired kitchen restaurant, and weddings and events venue.


Here’s What Goes Into Our Paella!

100 lbs of Bomba Rice imported from Valencia, Spain
200 lbs of Chicken
150 lbs of Shrimp
3,000 Nova Scotia Quahog Littleneck Clams
500 lbs of Lobster
3,000 Mussels
80 lbs of Andouille Sausage
60 lbs of Local Onions
100 lbs of Tomatoes
40 lbs of Green Peppers
40 lbs of Red Peppers
40 lbs of Orange and Yellow Peppers
40 lbs of Peas
200 Lemons
5 lbs of Parsley

Colloca’s iteration of the Paella recipe kicks it up several notches to include meat and seafood paellas that include chicken, andouille sausage, shrimp, mussels, littleneck clams, and lobster, and included about 1,000 lbs of ingredients along with imported saffron, smoked and sweet paprika and other spices:

We Do Things Differently Here!

The northern most winery in New York State’s famed Finger Lakes Region is not identified as a “Finger Lakes Winery”. Colloca Estate Winery is located on the North Coast of America – along the southern shores of the Great Lake Ontario. That means it’s just outside of the American Viticultural Association’s (AVA) geographic designation for the region.

But because of its unique location, it enjoys the same micro-climate advantages as the rest of the Finger Lakes Region – but on a much grander scale because it sits on shore of the massive great lake.

Set upon 100 acres and nine hundred feet of unobstructed waterfront, the Colloca Estate Winery reminds you more of a state park than a winery.  This site was specifically chosen by Dr. Christopher Colloca to develop the Lake Effect Vineyard®  not just because of the very special microclimate, but like the rest of the Finger Lakes Region, it enjoys the nutrients the rich soil provided by the glaciers that carved out the region supply to nurture their growth. 

The result is the production of world class wines that have scored 95 points and won double gold medals in consecutive years at double blinded international wine competitions judged by experts.

Some of the Things We Do Differently Here …

  • Our Culture.  Our philosophy of leadership is a stark departure from traditional command and control.  We believe in empowering everyone on our team to come up with the best and brightest ideas to solve problems and improve your customer experience.

  • The Vines.  We sourced 13,128 vitis vinifera grape vines originating from Europe that are grafted on to Native American rootstock using the finest vinicultural practices and laser planted them in our Lake Effect Vineyard® to grow our wine grapes.  We have one of the largest plantings of vinifera vines on the Lake Ontario Wine Trail

  • The Terroir.  Our Lake Effect Vineyard® benefits from the moderating lake effect from our proximity on the Great Lake Ontario.  This, together with rich Ontario gravely loam and clay soils, brought here by glaciers at the end of the Ice Age, makes our vineyards one of the best places to grow grapes in the State.

  • Our Grapes.  To make the best wine, we concentrate on just a few varietals that grow well in our cool climate, Riesling, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

  • The Fruit.  We let our fruit hang on the vine and harvest a couple of weeks later than others to fully experience the lake effect developing character, intensity, flavors, and fully ripen.

  • Oak.  We source the finest brand new French Oak barrels that cost over $1,000 each to age our wines.

  • Our Estate Winemaking.We hand pick our fruit each autumn at the peak of ripeness and immediately begin the process of making wine.We carefully destem the grapes and gently crush them to release their juice.We use a bladder press to extract the full extent of the juices.We use stainless steel tanks to ferment our Rieslings and buy new French oak to age our Chardonnay and Pinot Noirs. (read more)

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