Bully Hill wines are fun wines. They are very enjoyable to drink and the brightly colored labels on the bottle are a joy to look at (click here). There is no other way to describe them. The wines are made from European grape stock grafted to native American root stock. The vineyards there at Bully Hill were started a along time ago and the property was purchased from Lloyd Sprague in 1958 by Creyton H. Taylor and Walter S.Taylor. Together they founded Bully Hill Inc. in 1970. They opened Bully Hill wines in 1977 after Walter was fired from the Taylor Wine Company in Hammondsport, NY.
There was a real struggle between David (Walter S.Taylor) and Goliath (the Coco-Cola Company) over Walter’s use of his last name on the wines produced at Bully Hill. Walter lost the initial battle in 1979 and coined his now famous phrase “you can get my name and my heritage, but you can’t get my goat”. But in the end he won, as Bully Hill wines prospered though all of the publicity and through Walter’s relentless promotion of his wines. Coca-Cola is no longer in the wine business, but Walter S. Taylor’s wife Lillian now runs the Bully Hill Winery and she has added many features to Bully Hill Wines which has only helped the business to grow and prosper (click here).
What kind of man was Walter S. Taylor? Some described him as different (click here). But I like to think of him as a man with a dream. Gifted, yes indeed, he loved to paint and to create some of the most hilarious wine bottle labels that you have ever seen. He spent most of his life promoting Bully Hill wines which often ran against the grain of how New York wine makers thought wine should be produced. Indeed, it was on one of his promotional trips that he was involved in a car accident in Florida which left him a quadriplegic for the remaining eleven years of this life. But his love of colors kept his mind alive as he created and painted new wine labels, holding the paint brush in his mouth.
What’s the color of your dreams? My dreams come as pictures of places and scenes but I can’t really say if they are in color or not. I think each of us live out our dreams during our waking hours. And as for Walter S. Taylor’s dreams, he made sure that they were richly colored for all to enjoy!