Virtual Tastings

Enjoy expert-led wine tasting from the comfort and safety of your home.  Public and private tastings are available.

Experience a sense of community, learn more about your favorite beverage, or just get away from it all!  Our virtual tastings are interactive, fun and educational: like a happy hour and wine class combined.  They explore wine evaluation, proper wine service, food pairing, winemaking, viticulture, and history.  Tastings are suitable for beginners as well as experienced wine tasters.  Our tastings have been featured in the Washington Post, Conde Nast Traveler and Uptown Radio.

Silver Thread makes some of the most consistently outstanding wines in the Finger Lakes.  The vast majority of our wine is made from grapes grown at our 10-acre estate vineyard on Seneca Lake, which is farmed using bio-intensive practices.  Virtual tastings feature our best-selling and most highly-rated wines.

Tastings are led by co-owners Paul and Shannon Brock, who are wine educators as well as winemakers. Paul has an M.S. in Enology and Viticulture from Cornell University, a level 3 certification from Wine & Spirit Education Trust, and is a Certified Wine Judge through American Wine Society. He has been teaching winemaking as a professor at Finger Lakes Community College for 10 years.

Shannon holds the prestigious Level 4 Diploma in Wine & Spirits from Wine & Spirit Education Trust, is a Certified Wine Judge through American Wine Society, and has an M.Ed. from University of Virginia Curry School of Education. She has been a WSET Certified Wine Instructor for 13 years.

Public Virtual Tastings: Upcoming

We began hosting virtual tastings through Facebook Live Stream and Vimeo in March 2020.  We will continue to offer regularly-scheduled tastings through the rest of 2020.  Anyone is welcome to participate, even if you don’t have the wine we are drinking.  We sell discounted packs of wines featured in the virtual tastings at our on-line wine shop if you want to taste the same thing that we are discussing.  Call (607) 582-6116 or e-mail for more information about these events.  We hope to see you there!

June 2020 Calendar


6/5 & 6/12: Virtual Wine & Cheese Pairing with Silver Thread and Lively Run

Make a perfect match with two of the Finger Lakes’ best artisanal producers!  Join Silver Thread Winemakers Paul & Shannon Brock and Lively Run Cheesemakers Peter Messmer and Valerie DeLong for two nights of interactive wine and cheese pairing.  Each week, two Silver Thread wines will be paired with two Lively Run cheeses.  A winemaker will lead you through tasting and appreciating the wines, and a cheesemaker will explain cheese styles and production.  Try out each combination and learn the secrets of wine and cheese pairing. You can order a four-pack of wines from Silver Thread and a four-pack of cheese from Lively Run to taste along with the presenters.  Visit Facebook or Vimeo to taste with us and comment.
June 5, 5:30-6:15pm: Red Wine and Cheese, lead by Paul from Silver Thread and Valerie from Lively Run, featuring Silver Thread’s Pinot Noir and Blackbird Red, and Lively Run’s Lake Effect Cheddar, Herbs de Provence Chevre and Feta.

June 12, 5:30-6:15pm: White Wine and Cheese, lead by Shannon from Silver Thread and Pete from Lively Run, featuring Silver Thread’s Gewurztraminer & Semi-dry Riesling, and Lively Run’s Blue Yonder and Za’tar Chevre.


6/20: Summer Solstice 2020 Virtual Bonfire and Toast

We will be live-streaming our annual Summer Solstice bonfire on Saturday, June 20, beginning at 8:30pm.  We will start the stream with a tasting and toast of our Estate Riesling, then light the bonfire at approximately 8:45 (sunset).  Visit Facebook to taste with us and comment.


6/26: Wine Club June Selections Virtual Tasting

Friday, June 26, 5:30-6:15: Join Paul and Shannon for a tasting of two exciting new releases offered to Phenology VIP and Riesling Club members in their June allocation: 2019 Dry Riesling (new release) and 2014 Estate Riesling (Library Selection).  Visit Facebook or Vimeo to taste with us and comment.


Private Virtual Tastings

Are you looking for a team-building experience or fun activity for your work group, friends or family?   How about a virtual Birthday Party?  Book a Private Virtual Tasting led by Silver Thread Co-owner/Wine Educator Shannon Brock via Zoom. During this 90-minute interactive experience, participants will be guided through a tasting of 2 wines with plenty of opportunity for question-and-answer.  The final 30 minutes is left open-ended for extended wine discussion or social time among your group. 

$350 minimum wine order required, plus $50 Virtual Tasting Fee. Wines are customizable to your group, although we have some suggested wine packs in our on-line store.  Silver Thread will ship wines to each participating household prior to the event. Email or call (607) 582-6116 to discuss options.  Click the “Book Tastings” button at right to reserve a date for your private virtual tasting.

Phenology Club & Case Club Members: Wine purchases made in 2020 may be applied toward the $350 minimum order. Club Members receive 50% off the Private Virtual Tasting fee.

Public Virtual Tastings: Past Events

Each public virtual tasting session has been saved so you can watch video of the event and taste along after it has happened.  Here is a listing of our prior sessions:



#OpenLocalWine–Memorial Day Weekend 2020

Celebrate Memorial Day Weekend with three refreshing wines that are perfect for summer.  Post a photo of one or all of these bottles on social media May 22 using #OpenLocalWine, and be part of a nationwide event to promote local wineries.

We hosted three nights in a row of casual, outdoor virtual tasting events on Vimeo and Facebook Live May 22, 23 and 24:

Friday, 5/22, 5:30-6:15pm: Taste Dry Rose and watch our winemaker grill up some Cornell Chicken, the famous roadside chicken BBQ of upstate NY.

Saturday, 5/23, 5:30-6:15pm: Taste Chardonnay and take a vineyard tour with our estate manager to learn about our bio-intensive practices.

Sunday, 5/24, 5:30-6:15pm: Taste Good Earth White and meet the newest addition to our vineyard team– a flock of chickens who will eat insect pests and fertilize the soil.

Wines can be purchased a la carte from our on-line store, and Paul’s Cornell Chicken recipe can be found here.


“Riesling Expert” Virtual Tasting Series May 2020

Our Rieslings are some of the finest in the the Finger Lakes, and can be compared favorably to benchmark styles from around the world.  This tasting series will explore the many expressions of our signature grape.  Each wine in the series has been rated at least 90 points (“outstanding”) by Wine Spectator, Robert Parker or Vinous Media.  Participants who show they have tasted all six wines (different vintages are ok) and joined in the tastings on Facebook Live or Vimeo Live will earn a “Silver Thread Riesling Expert” medal (coursework must be completed by May 31, 2020).

  • Session 1: Dry Rieslings & Age-ability of Riesling- May 1, 5:30-6:30, featuring Dry Riesling 2014 and Dry Riesling 2018
  • Session 2: Off-dry Rieslings and Single Vineyard StylesMay 8, 5:30-6:30pm, featuring Riesling Estate Vineyard 2018 and Riesling Doyle Fournier Vineyard 2018
  • Session 3: Medium-sweet Rieslings and Late Harvest Style May 15, 5:30-6:30pm, featuring Semi-dry Riesling 2018 and Riesling Late Harvest Select Gridley Bluff Point Vineyard 2017

Purchase the wines for the Riesling Expert tasting series here.  Find course materials here.



Virtual Tasting Series March & April 2020

During March and April, we hosted a series of six Virtual Tastings using Facebook Live. These tastings focused on our six most popular wines, and were very well-received for being both informative and fun! You can view video recordings of the live tastings on our Facebook videos page. You can purchase a discounted six-pack of wines shipped to you, or it pick up at the winery to taste along with the videos.

Dry Riesling 2018– Friday, March 20 at 5:30pm
Dry Rose of Pinot Noir 2019–Saturday, March 28 at 5:30pm
Good Earth White 2017–Friday, April 3 at 5:30pm
Blackbird Red Wine 2017–Thursday, April 9 at 5:30pm
Gewurztraminer 2019–Friday, April 17 at 5:30pm
Chardonnay 2017–Friday, April 24 at 5:30pm
Winemaker Notes and Pairing Suggestions for each wine are included, as well as information on how to watch the tasting videos.

Purchase the wines for this tasting series here.




Book Tastings