It’s time for one of our favorite events of the year! Hosted by the New York Wine and Grape Foundation, the NY Drinks NY Grand Tasting celebrates the incredible array of unbelievable winemakers and producers right here in the state of New York. The foundation has recently shifted its tagline to “Boldly, NY,” which we think resonates perfectly with the outstanding wine scene growing here.
This year’s tasting will be held on March 31st at the Rainbow Room and will be the largest yet with 50 wineries and over 200 unique wines. Every bottle in the house will come from New York, highlighting the four beautiful regions of Long Island, The Finger Lakes, Hudson Valley, and the Niagara Escarpment.
We spoke with Sam Filler, Executive Director of the New York Wine and Grape Foundation who was very excited to tell us about the newest feature of this year’s event. For the first time ever, there will be a consumer seminar, led by Alexander Peartree who manages the Tasting Department of The Wine Enthusiast Magazine. He’ll be discussing various wines from top-notch producers like Dr. Frank and Paumanok Vineyards plus a few other stars.
Filler also said: “We are excited that the Grand Tasting will be a venue for large scale activation of our new brand ‘Boldly, NY’.”
Those in the trade will have two of their own seminars as well: Library Rieslings, which will feature Rieslings over 5 years of bottle age and moderated by Paul Greico, and Burgundy Grapes in NY, focusing on Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Gamay Noir, and moderated by Yannick Benjamin.
One of the most enjoyable components of this event every year is getting to explore the wines from wineries that are new to the Grand Tasting, and this year there are eight (8) producers that have never been a part of NY Drinks NY: Nathan K. Wines (which includes the Hickory Hollow and chëpìka brands), Suhru Wine, Forge Cellars, Silver Thread, Element Winery, Osmote, Three Brothers, and Buttonwood Grove.
As Paul Brady, Sommelier and brand ambassador for the New York Wine & Grape Foundation, mentions, “It’s exciting to see some of these wineries entering the New York City market, dipping their toe for the first time.” The momentum of this program, especially the Grand Tasting, is a catalyst for many small newcomers to make their splash onto the New York scene, and it’s the consumers who really get to have a say in that.
Buyers have the opportunity to chat directly with the producers of these wines, both the new guys and the folks who have made their claim on the industry. “NY Drinks NY is all about increasing market exposure of NY Wines and getting New Yorkers to see their home state wines as high quality,” says Filler. His goal is to elevate New York wineries and highlight their irreverent spirit and culture while helping them gain exposure and make their way onto restaurant lists around the city and state.
Of course, there will be an abundance of delicious snacks and treats from all around the state. You’ll have the opportunity to sample fresh cheeses, cured meats, and wonderful sweets made right here at home. Plus, there’s the spectacular view you’ll get from the Rainbow Room which is rarely open to the public these days and is a true NYC institution. This is going to be one of the signature wine events of the season, so get your tickets now!
What’s better than great wine and artisanal pizza?
The New York Times described Ridge Monte Bello as “America’s greatest Cabernet Sauvignon.”
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