Brothers open new winery in Murray

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 17 October 2014 at 12:00 am

‘This is a lifetime dream for me.’ – Taras Salamaca

Photos by Tom Rivers – Taras Salamaca, left, and his brother Alex today opened Salamaca Estate Winery at the corner of Hindsburg Road and Route 104 in the Town of Murray. The winery and its tasting room are located in a barn from 1898.

MURRAY – When they were kids, Taras Salamaca and his brother Alex remember their father Illa making wine.

Taras, in particular, enjoyed helping his father ferment the home wines. Taras, now 50, has worked with his brothers at the Murray Superette on Ridge Road and a number of other jobs. But winemaking has always been a passion.

Today, Taras achieved a goal. He and Alex opened their own winery near the corner of Hindsburg Road and Route 104. Salamaca Estate Winery is debuting with four different wines, with two more to soon be released (once the labels are approved). Two more could then follow by New Year’s.

Taras Salamaca is pictured in the vineyard by De Chaunac grapes.

“This is a long-time dream of mine,” Taras Salamaca said this afternoon at the winery, 2660 Hindsburg Rd.

The brothers have been working on the project for five years. Taras worked with Jonathan Oakes, the winemaker at Leonard Oakes Estate Winery. Taras learned the art of wine-making and also studied with the Oakes family in growing grapes. Taras has 15 varieties growing next to the winery.

His brother Alex will manage the wine sales, the tasting room and the retail side of the business. They worked together remodeling a barn from 1898. They have kept original wooden beams, built wine racks from the old wood, and kept an original door and hardware from a horse stable inside the barn.

Alex Salamaca is pictured next to wine racks with the tasting area behind him.

“There are a lot of commercial wineries out there,” Taras said. “We wanted it to be rustic.”

Even in the vineyard, Taras picked wooden posts over metal ones to give the farmland an old-time look.

The brothers believe the winery will be a draw from Rochester, especially with the Niagara Wine Trail being extended last year from Niagara County through Orleans and to Route 390 in Rochester. Salamaca was approved by the Niagara Wine Trail for inclusion on the trail and should benefit from the group’s marketing efforts, especially into the Rochester market.

“We’re in an excellent location,” Alex said. “We will try to draw the crowd from Rochester.”

The winery has a rustic look and includes lots of repurposed wood. The horse stall was reused as a wine containment area.

The brothers also want to honor their heritage. They are sons of Ukranian immigrants. Their father Illa and mother Sophia left the Ukraine and settled in Rochester. They operated a small grocery store in Rochester before moving to Murray in the 1970s. They preferred life out in the country. They purchased the barn that is now the winery about 40 years ago.

Two of their sons – Oleh and Myron – own and operate the Murray Superette.

The logo for Salamaca Estate Winery is similar to the trident symbol for the Ukraine.

The Salamacas expect to have a bigger grand opening in the spring. For more information, visit the winery’s website at