Sheldrake Point is the most prominent point of land on the west coast of Cayuga Lake and holds an equally prominent place in history. For centuries, the protected coves, rushing streams and gentle slopes provided for the largest settlements of native Cayuga Indians. Early in the 1800s, Sheldrake Point became a destination for ferries serving the lake and the beauty of the lake was quickly discovered.
By the late 1800s, "Summering at Sheldrake" became popular and many urban village residents made it their vacation destination. The comfortable summer breezes on the veranda of the Cayuga Lake Hotel at Sheldrake were a welcome alternative to the city heat. Following the turn of the century the hotel was destroyed by a fire, and Sheldrake became more of a year-round community than a resort destination.
Over the years agriculture has played an important role. The 160 acre lakeshore site that is now Sheldrake Point Vineyard was operated as an orchard and dairy farm from 1850 until the mid 1980s. We have endeavored to establish our vineyards and restore the vitality of this beautiful site while honoring the scenic beauty and agricultural heritage of Sheldrake.