Tomorrow begins New York Wines and Dines month, a harvest-time celebration of the agriculture of the Empire State. The main focus of this industry promotion is to bring attention to the state's increasingly attractive wines, but it incorporates other local agricultural products as well, and it's all backed up by some of New York's best restaurants. During the harvest month of October, dozens of local restaurants will feature New York wines on their menus, paired with dishes made with local New York state ingredients. The idea of this promotion is somewhat parochial, but neatly summarizes the current culinary trend toward regionality: "New York Wines with New York foods in New York restaurants."

Wines and Dines is also maintaining a list of wine retailers who feature local wines, and its website contains lots of information about New York agriculture, as well as a recipes section (still somewhat under construction) that makes use of local ingredients.

nywinemap.JPGGothamist is all for supporting local agriculture, especially the many smaller producers who use sustainable, healthful, and humane methods. And we're continually surprised by the rapidly increasing quality and variety of the state's wines. It may not be Napa, but you can still drink quite well (and fairly cheaply) right here in the Empire State.

Read Gothamist on the Wines of the North Fork.

Learn how to support local farming, and read about the Brooklyn farm that is teaching sustainable agriculture to a new generation of New Yorkers.