The tasting room at Vintage New York, a division of Rivendell Winery in the Hudson Valley, offers a unique approach to tasting local wines. With thirty-six wines available on the short list (most of which cost only $8 or $10 a glass), this is a fair-priced option for the indecisive (like me), who might be advised to avoid the big list-an offering of over 200 varieties of New York State wines, all of which are available by the glass.
The tasting room is a lofty angular space, softened with textured bare bulbs, a singular high window, and long mirrors that run above the room-length booth. With a balcony that overlooks the counter-less bar, and a couple of high tables with stools, one has a few seating options and moods from which to choose. When the weather is nice, the window and doors are kept wide open, adding wafts of fresh air to ones sensorial delight.
Last night Jenn, Matt, and I settled in for an evening of tasting, comparing our observations to those described on the big list, until Matt declared, “I have taste but not concentration,” then ordered a flight of Pinot Noir, and added, “just get me drunk.”
I appreciate a man who values his time.
The menu offers a selection of tasting flights, but if one doesn’t want to sample three cabernets or rosés, one may pick and choose any three from the short list for $13, or skip the wine all together and drink beer from the Empire State. For those who come to eat, there isn’t much pressure to think, as the proprietors have taken the time to recommend wine parings for every dish.
After sampling so many delectable Long Island wines at Brooklyn Uncorked, I am not sure that Vintage New York has chosen the the most interesting wines for their short list. That said, there were still a few worth noting.
I still favor the Wolffer Rosé from Long Island (first discovered at Brooklyn Uncorked!). A friendly pale pink wine full of soft strawberries with a touch of mineral, and a light citrus bite.
The 2006 Lamoreaux Landing Dry Riesling from the Finger Lakes region was an interesting wine that gained complexity as it warmed, its initial granny smith bite remaining tart as the citrus flavors took over and finished smooth.
And finally, the 2006 Warm Lake Pinot Noir from the Niagara Escarpment was delicious once it opened up,an earthy dank bouquet full of dark fruit, with a taste of hazelnut (or as the menu described–vanilla spice) that lingered long.
29 SEPTEMBER, 2008. THIS LOCATION IS NOW CLOSED. THERE IS ANOTHER VINTAGE ON THE UPPER WEST SIDE. HAVEN’T BEEN THERE YET.
[Where: 482 Broome St., New York, NY 10013]