Pick up a bottle of Sparkling Point Brut on your next visit to Stirling Sake in Greenport. (Credit: David Benthal photos)
Remember the days when dinner was a protein-starch-veggie affair? There’s no shame if you can’t. Food may still sustain us, but these days it’s also meant to entertain us.
Blame the millennials, Instagram and wine and food subscription services, but experiential dining is now at the head of the table.
The Long Island restaurant scene has become more creative — putting a greater emphasis on shareable conversation-starting tapas, local ingredients and plating dishes so artistically they look almost too good to eat. (more…)
Sannino Bella Vita Vineyard 2014 Syrah. (Credit: Vera Chinese)
Compared to other red grapes like merlot, cabernet sauvignon or cabernet franc, you just don’t see a lot of syrah being grown on Long Island. And you don’t find many varietal Syrahs — that is wines made of at least 75 percent Syrah with that word printed on the label.
Maybe I’ll get into the reasons why in an upcoming column, but for now just know that there just aren’t that many. But, they always seem to stand out in my tastings. Maybe it’s just the novelty of them — they have entirely different flavor profiles than those other red grapes — but I almost always like them. Maybe not as much as I like Syrah from the Northern Rhone, but still, I feel like there is unrealized potential for this grape here on the North Fork.
A bottle of Sannino Bella Vita Vineyard Petite Verdot. (Credit: Lenn Thompson)
Petit verdot is a grape that you’ve probably tasted before, though perhaps without realizing it.
A red grape used in classic Bordeaux blends, it’s grown in many vineyards on the North Fork, though not in large quantities. It’s a late ripener and often among the last grapes picked every harvest. On Long Island, it’s mostly used to add color, tannin and acidity other red wines. It can really help with mid-palate weight and concentration, making wines taste more complete.
And once you recognize its telltale structure and flavors, you can pick it out even in small amounts in a blend. (more…)
Sannino Bella Vita Vineyard in Peconic (Credit: Monique Singh-Roy)
Surely you’ve heard of wineries being rated for the quality of their wines, but what about for their winery tours?
That’s the aim of a contest from 10Best.com, a travel division of USA Today, which recently nominated one North Fork winery for offering the “Best Winery Tour.”
Sannino Bella Vita Vineyard in Peconic is among 20 wineries from around the country readers can vote for based on their tour experience. Being the only local winery surprised even the winery owners themselves. (more…)