As we entered The Garden Wine Bar at NYC’s Four Seasons Hotel, Caitlin and I chuckled, wondering how she managed to score an invite to this inaugural event. Grabbing a glass of bubbly and a few nibbles of cheese, we stood at a table where I was happy to be her date. It’s a lovely space, as one might expect–with four towering Acacia trees, windows to the ceiling, a 15-foot tall wine display, and many plays on light. With 200 bottles of wine to choose from and approximately 150 by the glass, one glimpse at the menu is all it takes to realize that I (sans expense account) am most likely not their quintessential guest.
Curated by sommelier Lacey Rozinsky, the wine list (that I received via press packet) is categorized by price. Of the 123 wines listed, a whopping 53 are from the U.S.–ten of which sell for $40 a glass. Why so many American wines? Taste or politics? Unfortunately, I didn’t get to ask. Fifteen bones will get you a glass of Merlot from Bedell in Long Island; and twenty, a glass of Merlot from Wölffer Estate. (Reader is free to draw his/her own conclusions here.) For $25, one can drink Bouchard Pere & Fils Meursault “Les Clous” 2006; and $35 will score a pour of Alain Burguet, Gevrey Chambertin “Mes Favorites” 2004.
For those with pockets full of down there’s a Cellar Selection that includes Pétrus 1979, Cháteau Margaux 1996, Cháteau Lafite Rothschild 1989, and Screaming Eagle Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 from Napa, which commands the highest price.
What I find most remarkable about the space, in addition to its cavernous comfort and light, is the acoustics. The room was full of chatter that did not invade our personal space. If Caitlin were to actually whisper across the table, I’d hear her. And while I realize it is not ideal to write about a place from the perspective of a party guest, I am going to defer here to my photographs.
Take note of the shadows on the ceiling. I spoke with Linda Asianian, the hotel’s Director of Development, and she said that during the day, the shadows of leaves can be found on the floor.
[Where: The Garden Wine Bar, The Four Seasons Hotel, 57 E. 57th St., New York, NY 10022]