Thursday, May 18, 2006

Weekly Wine Tasting at Divine Bar in New York

Manhattan Midtown – Finally found a weekly wine tasting that’s fantastic…it would only be better if it was free.

Divine Bar – 236 W 54th Str between Broadway & 8th

Event is called “Vino-Versity” casual weekly wine tasting to help you gain knowledge and experience by tasting multiple wine samples.

This week was "California Wine & Pizza"

TABLE A

Artesa Chardonnay – Carneros
Bernardus Sauv Blanc – Monterey
Luna “Freakout” a white blend, Silverado Trail – Napa
Cosentino Sangiovese, California
Clay Station Malbec, Lodi
X Y Zin 100 year vines Old Zinfidel

TABLE B

Monticello “Montreaux” Brut Sparkling NY, Napa
Luddite Arneis “Molto Bene”, Sonoma
Lindquist “La Verdad” Tempranillo-Syrah-Grenache, Central Coast
C & T Tailgate Zin, Napa
Amphora Syrah, Dry Creek
Ampora Petite Syrah, Dry Creek

TABLE C

Jade Mountain Viognier, Mt. Veeder Napa
Chalone Chardonnay, Monterey
Edna Valley Pinot Gris, South Coast
Domaine Chandon Pinot Noir, Carneros
Dynamite Zinfandel, Mendocino
Solaris Reserve Cabernet, Napa

TABLE D

Estancia Chardonnay, Monterey
J. Lohr Riesling, Monterey
“J” Pinot Noir, Sonoma
Maramonte Syrage (Syrah-Petite Sirah-Petite Verdot), California
Vince Vineyards Cabernet, Napa
Matanzas Creek Merlot, Sonoma
Silkwook Syrah, Napa
O’Brian Cellars “Seduction” Cabernet Blend, Napa

These tastings are $35 in advance and $40 at the door – but be warned they sell out in advance!

More information: http://www.vino-versity.com/

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Wine in NY - North Fork of Long Island

New York - This month’s Wine Spectator had an excellent write up on New York Wine so it was time to rent a car and get out of Manhattan.

This is my first trip to the North Fork of Long Island. The first thing you'll notice is how peaceful it is to get away from the city – Wow I can hear birds singing – nice.

Wineries that I visited and would do so again:

Pellegrini Vineyards – First guy was in training – Sorry Bob – give me someone who knows what going on…luckily Chris Cornwell comes to the rescue and brings out some nice wine to sample. I was really impressed with their Merlots. ( I buy 1 reserve and 2 of the Estate) Beautiful grounds and nice for a picnic.

Bedell Cellars – nice write up in Spectator and they were right. They have some great blends, beautiful property and great artwork on their label. Mother and daughter working in tasting room were very knowledgeable and enthusiastic.

Raphael – This is a must stop because of the amazing tasting room that rivals many in Napa. The owners built it to resemble a Monastery – and it is heavenly. Ask for Sal he was very helpful.

Lenz Winery – One of their Merlots scored comparable to Petrus in a blind taste test. They also offer a Blanc de Blanc that is “still” and not sparkling, so it didn’t have the in-bottle secondary fermentation of wine to effect carbonation. Non! M├ęthode Champenoise

Corey Creek Vineyards – Nice property with a great porch overlooking the vineyard and make sure you taste their Raspberry wine – which would be great over gelato. Insider's Tip: Corey Creek is sister winery to Bedell, buying a tasting at either one gets you comped at the other.

Most wineries close at 5:00, but a few stay open until 9:00pm. Of course people tasting that late in the day are very entertaining.


Claudio’s (Est. 1870) on the water in Greenport is a great place for seafood and has become one of the most prominent dining and boating experiences on the eastern seaboard. www.claudios.com

The wine region on the North Fork of Long Island isn’t Napa – you won’t find huge California Cabs, but the scenery is well worth your visit.

Directions: Take 495 East until it runs out at Riverhead – continue East until it turns into Hwy 25. Take it all the way up to Greenport and circle back around on 48 for an excellent adventure.

-Brian