Our April selections for the New York Cork Club have been posted and are on their way to Cork Club members. The New York Cork Club is our monthly wine club exclusively featuring New York State wines. Each month members receive 2 wines chosen by New York wine guru Lenn Thompson. This month, Lenn selected two whites that compare and contrast very well.
First up Keuka Lake Vineyards’s Reserve Vignoles 2007. Sold out at the winery, Lenn got the last case available. Vignoles is a hybrid grape used in late harvest and dessert wines. Lenn’s tasting notes find the nose “rich and fruity with intense ripe (almost over-ripe) pear aromas mingling with those of musk melon and peach skin” with a medium to full-bodied palate that is similarly ripe and intense. We’d add that it had pineapple notes, which are typical of this variety.
Lenn also got his hands on an advance case of Raphael Vineyards’s Naturale 2008. Made with wild yeasts and unfined and unfiltered, this represents Raphael’s winemaker’s first foray into natural winemaking. Lenn found it to be complex and intricate with aromas of ripe Gala apples, apple blossom, roasted nuts, sweet herbs, lemon zest and toasty yeast. We tried the Naturale 2008 with fava bean puree and it was delicious. The crispness of the wine counters the creaminess of the puree and the herbal notes of the wine complemented the freshness of the fava beans.
For Lenn’s detailed descriptions of the wines and his tasting notes, click here.
In honor of Mother’s Day tonight from 5-7pm in the Manhattan wine store and on Saturday May 9 from 5-7pm in the Brooklyn wine store, we will be celebrating by tasting three wines (a white, a red and a rose) all made by moms! Remember to bring your same-day receipt for over $10 purchase from Provisions to the wine store and get 5% off your wine purchase.
Chateau des Hospitaliers 2008 ($14)
Mme. Martin-Pierrat proves the old saying that the phrase “working mom” is redundant. She is involved in every aspect of winemaking at her family’s tiny 24 ha. estate in the Languedoc region of southern France and produces this lovely clean and fresh white with apple and peach aromas.
Rosi Schuster Blaufrankisch 2007 ($19.75)
When Rosi married her husband, Franz Schuster, they each owned their own vineyard in the Austrian countryside. They joined forces and began making classic Austrian wines. Recently the day-to-day wine-making has been handed off to their son Hannes, but Rosi’s passion, influence and taste is still felt in every wine they produce. This is a quintessential blaufrankisch, with dark red fruits and peppery spice.
Susana Balbo Crios Malbec Rose 2008 ($14)
The name says it all: Crios is “offspring” in Portuguese. The first female winemaker in Argentina dedicates these wines to her children. Her rose of Malbec is very dry and because it is made from the powerful Malbec grape, it has enough character to stand up to heartier foods.
Fabulous Fort Greene fashionista and foodie, Nyisha, the owner of Sugar Lily Bakeshop, found a way to combine her two passions by making couture cupcakes. Handmade, down to the decorative fondant that adorns their tops, we get them every weekend and they quickly sell out. For Mother’s Day weekend, we’ve asked Nyisha to include her signature decorative lace wrapping to make these cupcakes extra special. Lest you think their beauty is only skin deep, rest assured the cupcakes are made with the highest quality ingredients and, in flavors like strawberries and cream, lemon coconut and orange blossom, are indulgently delicious. We can’t think of a better gift for Mother’s Day!
Gianduja (or gianduia) is chocolate made with 50% hazelnut paste – and is the inspiration behind Nutella. Even more inspired, Ben Van Leeuwen – of the Van Leeuwen ice cream truck that should soon appear on the streets of NYC – has tried to capture this flavor in an ice cream. We’ve got Leeuwen’s ice creams in pints in the store right here in Fort Greene so there’s no reason to chase down the truck with a fistful of dollars.
You will find no chunks or streaks of chocolate here. The flavor of Michel Cluizel chocolate and rich Piedmont hazelnuts are blended through, making a creamy flavor and texture that hints at its inspiration without being overpowering. We find Ben’s ice creams to be adult ice creams – not overly sweet but possessing that creamy, dense, rich, fresh goodness that appeals to the kid in all of us. As if it couldn’t get any better, the ingredients he uses are good for you: hormone-free milk from farmers he knows in Lewis County at the foot of the Adirondacks in New York, egg yolks and sugar. No stabilizers, no emulsifiers or preservatives.