Showing posts with label wine event. Show all posts
Showing posts with label wine event. Show all posts


AWESOME DEAL: Wine and Mixology Classes at Back Label Wine Merchants

Summer is just about here and that means it's time to stop drinking alone in the doldrums of your apartment. Back Label Wine Merchants recently posted part 1 of their summer wine and mixology class schedule and at $40 a pop (you get a $20 voucher to buy anything in the store after), each one is a steal!

Here are the deets:

  • Wine 101- Nature vs. Nurture - Thursday 6/5, 7pm - 8pm
Join us for an introduction to how wine is made and why it’s so darned enjoyable. This class will cover the basics of viticulture and show how farming plays a huge role in shaping what you experience in the glass.
  • Austria 101! - Saturday 6/7, 4pm - 5pm
In a world where minerality is provocative and Rieslings are as dry as they get, join us for a tour through the great Austrian countryside and their commitment to exceptional farming and viticulture. Austrian wine specialist, Jodi Stern, will lead us on our journey and some of the greats Austria has to offer!
  • Champagne 101 in 3 Parts – Part 2 “Champagne & Cheese″ - Thursday 6/12, 7pm - 8pm
There’s nothing like bubbles and cheese especially those from Champagne and our friends at Spoonwood Cabin Farm (Jacksonville, Vermont). The great cheeses of Spoonwood Cabin Farm are tiny-production, artisanal French-style, semi-soft cheeses that aren’t readily available in this country. This class is not to be missed! Call today to sign up and reserve your seat!
  • 8 Kickass Grapes you’ve Never Heard of and Why They Matter - Saturday 6/14, 4pm - 5pm
There are so many grapes out there and so little time it feels like, at least to us.  The odds are you have actually tried some of these and wines and don’t even know it! If in fact that is not true, this is the perfect moment to come on in and start a new wine adventure. Guest Speaker – Evan Spingarn
  • True Wine Connoisseurs: Where Wine and Music Meet - Thursday 6/19, 5pm - 8pm
5 years ago Will Tell played a joke on his friend Sadat X by placing in his hands a bottle of wine instead of cognac while in the studio.  From that moment there was no turning back, the result was nearly 70 videos, a great love of wine and a lot of laughs.  Together they’ll put on a class that will not quickly be forgotten.
  • Mixology 101 - Saturday 6/21, 4pm - 5pm
Rock star bartender Robby Haynes, owner of the new and popular Chicago bar Analogue, will be here while in NYC to lead this badass class involving the dos and don’ts of mixology and what inspirations lead to world class cocktails! Robby is best known by Chicagoans as the star bartender of Wicker Park’s Violet Hour.
  • Champagne 101 in 3 Parts- Part 3 “Cote des Blancs″ - Thursday 6/26, 7pm - 8pm
The Cote des Blancs is a unique and very special place within the renowned region of Champagne. This class will cover just how special it is showcasing its soil types, climate and decadent expressions. Want to really learn about Champagne? We triple dog dare ya! Ouch.
  • Summer Single Malts - Saturday 6/28, 4pm - 5pm
Single Malt Scotch is not just for the colder months. Join us as we explore the finer and lighter side of this classic Scotch whisky!

To book a class, call (212) 229-WINE or order online at


Rioja, Rioja, Rioja!

If mint juleps and margaritas aren't your thing this weekend, might we suggest some wine? Rioja to be exact. Spain's most renowned wine region is putting on a party tomorrow and you're invited!

The inaugural Rioja Wine and Tapas Festival will be held in Brooklyn at the newly opened, award-winning Weylin B. Seymour’s (formally the Williamsburgh Savings Bank) at 175 Broadway, Brooklyn, tomorrow, 5/3 from 1-6pm.

Tickets are $55, with proceeds benefiting culinary scholarships at the James Beard Foundation, and include more than 200 tastings of wines from the entire region. Over 40 top Rioja winemakers and representatives will be on hand to speak about the wines, while 25 notable US chefs, from New York restaurants and beyond, will create their interpretations of Rioja-inspired tapas. You can visit the Paella Garden, sample delicious hams at the jamón bar and savor some of Spain’s best cheeses in the cheese cave. As a plus, all ticket buyers will be entered to win a 126-bottle cellar. Ole!

Since tickets are officially sold-out, click here to sign up to volunteer and maybe they'll let you take a few sips and nibbles here and there (and after your shift!).


Sonoma in NYC

Last night I was invited to taste the best Sonoma, California has to offer at the Taste of Sonoma: On Tour event at City Winery, featuring more than 100 wines from 50 wineries throughout the region.

Wine glasses waiting to be filled
Having taken a trip to that region last year, I was really excited to see if there was anything I recognized and remembered. Adjacent to Napa Valley, Sonoma is known for full bodied Cabernet Sauvignons and rich Zinfandels as well as fruity Pinot Noirs and crisp Chardonnays and sparkling wines.

The food at the event featured cheese heavy passed hors d'oeuvres (I loved the carrot and ricotta crostini) and meat and cheese platters from Murray's Cheese.

I was happy to recognize some of my favorite Zinfandels from wineries I visited last year (Sbragia overlooking Lake Sonoma and Dry Creek Vineyards) as well as some new ones (Fritz was amazing).

As far as whites go, we liked the stainless steel-aged Chardonnay from Rodney Strong as well as the Wedding Cuvee from Iron Horse Vineyards. Francis Ford Coppola Winery, another one I visited, sampled both their Director's Cut Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 (YUM!) and their 2012 Director's Cut Pinot Noir. The most-interesting-wine-of-the-night award went to the 2009 Baker Lane Estate Vineyard Syrah, which we tasted against the same wine in 2011. The gal pouring told us that these wines are almost strong enough that they don't even need food, "meat and wine in a bottle," she said. And we agreed in the best way possible!


Holiday Cheers!

The Village Voice and their events team is at it again. If you're someone who takes holiday drinking a bit classier than a peppermint patty shot (although you have to admit those are darn delicious), be sure to check out the Holiday Spirits Tasting Event happening tomorrow night at Studio Square in Long Island City.

Of course I love that the venue is a hop, skip and a jump from my digs in Astoria, but if you've never visited the "new beer garden," you're in for a treat. In addition to their large patio, Studio Square has a fairly large 2-story indoor space which will feature drinks from more than 25 local wineries, breweries, distilleries, and specialty liquor makers. There will also be hors d'oeuvres and music all night.

General admission tickets are $50 (update: use coupon code THANKS for $25 tickets) and will be available at the door. VIP tickets are $70 and will let you in an hour earlier than everyone else and you will take home a commemorative wine tote with event goodies. Everyone will be able to take home their tasting glass as well, and ticket fees will partially support the ASPCA.

Studio Square
35-44 37th Street
Long Island City, Queens 11106
Thursday Dec. 5
General Admission: 7:30-10:30
VIP Entry at 6:30


Summer of Riesling Worship

So I feel terrible for taking so long to post about the Summer of Riesling crawl hosted by Terroir, but the truth is I've been drunk on the elegant and dynamic white wine with the essence of citrus or stone fruit and sometimes petrol to compose myself long enough to do it justice.

Back in July, I heard about a funky little endeavor put on by the genius of Paul Grieco at Terroir wine bar in the East Village and David of Grapes and Grains. All summer, the only white wine he would serve would be Riesling, and he was challenging his minions to a month long crawl across two boroughs to taste and evaluate 13 different Rieslings. When I first started drinking wine, I would only drink Riesling because I thought it was always sweet. Boy was I wrong. I committed to completing the challenge and dragged a couple of friends into the wine abyss with me. We tasted wines from sweet to dry, aromatic always but with varying degrees of fruit, floral and even gasoline flavors. We were also brought to the coolest venues, from Bar Veloce in the East Village (where I discovered their amazing Nutella Panino for only $6 - get it!) to Huckleberry Bar in Williamsburg with the friendliest bartenders. I also loved getting to go to Bar Bouloud and sitting in front of the charcuterie bar, doing a flight tasting at Blue Ribbon Downing Street Bar, and sampling Riesling on tap at Blue Ribbon Brooklyn.

My friend Christine and I posing with our "Summer of Riesling" passports at Bar Veloce
Other than the obvious reason of partaking in a journey to drink wine throughout the summer, up for grabs was a Riesling tasting dinner for six people at Terroir's sister restaurant Hearth. After the crawl was up and the passports were turned in, I discovered that I was one of about twelve or thirteen people who actually completed the challenge. Our next task was to answer two of the most absurd questions I have ever been asked, but I knew that I had to be creative in answering them. 

Relying on the physics I learned in college and the drawing skills I practiced in grade school, my creative juices flowed (with Riesling of course) I came up with something I was pretty proud of and was sure that I had it in the bag. See my questions and answers here: Yael's Q&A.

Then I found out there was a girl who wrote her answers entirely in verse. Of course she did. She triumphed and I was sad.

But just reinforcing how much I love the creative genius that is Paul Grieco and Terroir, I was not only invited to a private tasting of Bernkasteler Doktor Rieslings (including one from 1959 - awesome!!!) with the winemaker herself, but I also was awarded half a case of different Rieslings as an honorable mention prize. 
My loot of juice
Can't say I'm still sad after all of this. Definitely not. Can't wait for next summer so that I can do it all over again! Until then, who's coming over for Riesling?