Car show and wine tasting draws crowd

Roger Johnson's Oldsmobile took home a "Top 20" award at the Hummingbird Hill Winery Car Show on Saturday. (The Leader-Herald/Rebecca Natale)

FULTONVILLE — The Hummingbird Hill Winery let the good times roll in on antique tires at its sixth annual car show Saturday afternoon.

Fifty cars, a record-breaking number for the winery, competed to be named one of the “Top 20” while attendees could sip free wine samples, feast on barbecued food and browse through a sample of small vendors from locally made honey and beeswax to custom photo buttons.

Co-owner of the winery, Kim Shick, with her husband handed out plaques to winners alongside state Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara, with Gary and Sophie Cole and their 1934 Ford Coupe taking home best in show.

Shick and her husband opened Hummingbird’s doors eight years ago. The couple purchased the 200-acre dairy farm after moving from New Jersey and planned to lead a quiet, retired life. But, as she puts it, “one thing led to another.”

“My husband started making some homemade wine, and he got bit by the wine bug,” Shick said. “He said, ‘You know what? Why don’t we plant some grapes?'”

Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara and winery co-owner Kim Shick present the "Best in Show" award to Gary and Sophie Cole at the Hummingbird Hill Winery Car Show on Saturday. (The Leader-Herald/Rebecca Natale)

They planted 1,200 grapes. Since then, 1,200 single fruits has morphed into more than 28 acres’ worth.

“I think we should open up a winery — have a tasting room and everything,” Shick recalled her husband saying to her. “I thought, ‘Wow.’ I thought, ‘Hey, you only go around once so, why not?'”

Tricia Ricotta, a friend of the Shicks, has been volunteering at the winery since it’s conception.

“The fact that you have so many cars out here today, with the rain and lightning and whatever else, it just shows how loyal people are to them,” Ricotta said. “They’re just great people.”

Roger Johnson, of Perth, said he and his mint green Oldsmobile — which secured a spot among the “Top 20” — are already looking forward to next year.

“This is probably the best show that I’ve been to. Honestly,” Johnson said. “The atmosphere is nice. The people are nice. It’s not quite like some of the big ones where there’s hundreds of cars, you know?”

He purchased his car just over a year ago, and with it, came a touch of nostalgia.

“My uncle had the same vintage,” Johnson said. “I can remember going for a ride with him when I was a teenager and seeing 98 miles per hour pop up on the speedometer. That was something that stuck in my mind.”

While there are seldom few spaces where wine and cars pair so neatly, it would seem the Hummingbird Hill Winery is one of them.