It was supposed to be a place to retire. But, now it seems Kimm and Ken Schick are working harder than ever.
Hummingbird Hills Winery is a labor of love, though. “We actually grow the product and create it here,” Ken says.
“When we got in this business, we wanted to create a product that we make ourselves.
“You have to have a passion for it, like any other farmer,” says the former contractor.
Ken and Kimm are New Jersey transplants who sought a quiet country life in upstate New York. After purchasing the former dairy farm, they had to figure out something to do with the land.
“The grapes were not in our minds at all,” says Kimm, who owned a deli back in Jersey. “We actually went back and forth over what we would do.”
Grapes were an odd choice, perhaps, as many varietals are difficult to grow here.
“When we set out to do something, we don’t quit. It’s not in our vocabulary,” Kimm says. “To do something that we love and bring everything full circle is something that keeps us going.”
They certainly went for it. The 1,200 vines they planted in 2001 as a base for their home winemaking has evolved into 28 acres of grapes and a business.