Nestled at the mouth of the St. Lawrence River, Cape Vincent is a little town with a lot to offer visitors.
Nicole Paratore, vice president of the Cape Vincent Chamber of Commerce, said Cape Vincent has a plethora of outdoor spaces connecting to beautiful parks, vineyards, historical sites, as well as a close-knit downtown with attractions, restaurants, shops and more.
At the heart of town is the village green, an old-style square of grassy parkland near the St. Lawrence River and village docks. Soon to be remodeled with new floating docks, boater services buildings and more, Cape Vincent can welcome guests by land or by boat. Just down the waterfront from downtown, East End Park serves as another mooring point for boaters and their families, and a perfect launching point for fishermen.
“There’s also the opportunity for a bike ride out to Tibbetts Point Lighthouse,” Mrs. Paratore said.
Three miles down Broadway, the village’s main thoroughfare, Tibbetts Point lighthouse is a historic gem. Built in 1827, the still-active lighthouse overlooks the exact point that Lake Ontario meets the St. Lawrence River, and hosts a museum and gift shop.
Back in the village’s downtown, visitors can grab a bite to eat at Telly’s Inn, owned by Francis Letizia and his wife Jenny. The classic restaurant features Italian fare in a comfortable, classy environment that Mr. Letizia says is focused on the guest.
“It’s bringing Utica’s Italian food up to the Thousand Islands, with a nice, easygoing feel,” he said.
Guests can grab a drink from the bar and enjoy the spacious patio with fire pits and plenty of seating, or enjoy a meal in the well-appointed dining room inside.
Just down the street is Chateau, a French-themed jewelry and pottery shop with handmade and artisanal wares in a French farmhouse aesthetic.
Owned by Dean N. Castle and Susan P. Castle, Chateau hosts handcrafted pottery and Mrs. Castle’s artisan jewelry. It also features their daughter Kate Castle’s soaps, and items from a wide range of artisans near and far.
“There are a lot of heirloom pieces, a lot of things in the mercantile aesthetic,” Kate Castle said.
Chateau hosts pottery classes, and craft shows throughout the season as well. Kate said, while those events were temporarily paused because of the coronavirus pandemic, they’re excited to welcome people back this summer.
Back down Broadway, just steps away from Chateau’s front doors is the Cape Vincent Brewing Company. Besides their famous Ruben sandwich and burgers, wings and pizza, the brewery features 11 in-house beers and local wines.
“We do everything from light beers to traditional ones, we have an Irish red, but then we also have a lineup of our IPA’s,” said Laurie Hanna, who owns the brewery with her husband Roland Sherman.
The brewery pulls as many ingredients as possible from local markets, so it’s truly a taste of the north country.
Wednesday nights Cape Vincent Brewing Company will host live music, alongside seafood specials, and have more live music on Friday, Saturday and Sunday almost every weekend.
Further out of town, visitors can find The Cape Winery on Deer Lick Road, on the grounds of a former farm. The nearly 90-acre grounds have been converted to vineyards, and visitors can sample the 15 varieties of wine made by David and Sandra Fralick.
“Mostly we specialize in the dry red and whites, we can make those with the cold-climate grapes that we grow,” Mr. Fralick said.
Many of the wines are made in a French style, to match Cape Vincent’s French-influenced past.
At the end of the year, the Fralicks will make a wine out of a blend of their cold-weather grapes to produce a nouveau wine as well, something unique in the region.
Visitors are assured to find something to suit their tastes no matter what. Mr. Fralick said he orders in grape juices from vineyards in the Finger Lakes region as well to make sweeter wines.
All tastings take place in the historic property’s original barn, so guests can find their new favorite wines in a rich, historic setting.
Guests are invited to bring a takeout meal or picnic lunch, and are invited to enjoy a meal with their favorite wines when they visit.
“It’s really just such a gorgeous setting,” Mrs. Fralick said.
No matter what your interests are, whether it’s boating, fishing, family-friendly fun, a romantic date or anything in between, Cape Vincent has something to meet your needs and make you feel welcomed.