Archive for October, 2009


This month’s installment of Experiments in the Vegetarian Kitchen, written for Snooth, is all about Beaujolais and Butternut Mac & Cheese.  Check here for wine reviews and recipes.  Cheers!


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Situated between a liquor store and a sports bar, Domaine Wine Bar sits just outside the 7-train, one stop into Queen.   But, as we ascended the station stairs, gazing up at the aluminum siding, we weren’t quite sure to think; and then Ellen remembered, she’d been here before, after we’d spent the 4th of July beneath the Pepsi sign in Long Island City.  We stepped to the door, peered inside where there were a few folks seated at the bar, paused, then took a table in the corner and sat. (more…)

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Accepting an invite, I attended an event named “Do the French Give the Best O.R.G.S.M?”, sponsored by the NYC Festival Sud de France at divine bar, last week.  Meant to compare the G.S.M‘s (blends of Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvedre) of Southern France with those of the “Rest of the World,” it was an event without contest.  In fact, I might even suggest that some pretty poor representations were chosen to represent the rest of the world on purpose, to emphasize a point, because I personally found more than a few of the ‘other’ options undrinkable. (more…)

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On Wednesday, Suzanne invited me to California WineWorks, in Ramsey, New Jersey, to partake in the pressing of her group’s Cabernet Franc.  Just one week prior, they’d gone to crush the grapes, which came from Napa, their fist step towards making and bottling their own barrel of wine.  Under the guidance of Craig and Clara Cicciari, the owners and winemakers at California WineWorks, they then added sulfites to kill off the natural yeasts (or bloom), before adding one of the six yeasts from which they could choose.  After fermenting the grapes for a week, during which they were punched down to extract color, flavor, and tannins from the grapes, Craig added rice hulls to aid in the extraction of fermented juice.   (more…)

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Last week I accepted an invitation to the Cape Classics portfolio tasting at Aquavit in midtown; Cape Classics being an importer who represents 25% of all imported (to the US) South African wines.  And while I have been to and enjoyed Xai Xai, the South African wine bar in midtown, and am a summertime fan of Mulderbosch Cabernet Sauvignon Rosé, my exposure to the wines of South Africa has been somewhat limited, and so I welcomed this chance to peruse their wines. (more…)

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As narrow and cozy as the brownstones that wind along West Village streets, The Upholstery Store follows on the heals of Kurt Gutenbrunner’s Wallsé,  Blaue Gans, and Café Sabarsky.  Without the Austrian effect of the other three, it’s a somewhat eclectic  34-bottle wine bar on Washington Street, with warm globe bulbs and candles, and a bar with seven seats. (more…)

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Last week Jenn hosted Imbibe NY Wine Club, and Caitlin and I came ready to spit.  The juice of the night–Zinfandel, with a couple of Primitivo wines thrown in for measure.  What’s up with all the hate? one might ask.  On my end, it’s fear of big, fat fruit blended with a lack of exposure–the perfect breeding grounds for misguided contempt, and though this night did not make me a lover…I did enjoy the first and last of our five selected wines. (more…)

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