Hundreds turn out for first North Fork Crush: Photos

DSC_0311

Three generations of the Goerler family, which owns Jamesport Vineyards. From left: Alex, Ron Jr. and Ron.

They came from everywhere from Aquebogue to New York City and beyond — some by car and many by the busload — to the sold out North Fork Crush event at Jamesport Vineyards Saturday.

With more than a dozen North Fork wineries pouring vino and several artisanal food producers offering their products for sale, the sold out afternoon session of the event drew more than 500 people. An additional 350 tickets had been sold for an evening session.

Many of those interviewed where young professionals who live in New York City, yet never tasted Long Island wine before.

“We had 150 people bussed out of Manhattan. We were shocked how many people took advantage [of a ticket and bus deal],” said Jamesport Vineyards president Ron Goerler Jr. “These are people that are discovering Long Island wines for the first time.”

“We plan to build this thing bigger,” he added.

A general admission ticket, which cost between $69 and $79, netted guests a souvenir tasting glass and samplings of the wineries’ offerings. Cheese and vegetable platters were provided by noah’s of Greenport. A VIP ticket included early admission and a seafood platter.

The laid-back event, organized by New York Wine Events, attracted a diverse audience, though attendance skewed toward a younger, urban and sophisticated crowd.

“It’s an eclectic kind of grouping. It’s very enjoyable,” said Patrice Drury of Westchester County. “I like to see how everyone dresses. Some people dress like they’re going to a party and some people like me are dressing for the weather.”

Several New York City residents noted that although they enjoy wine, they were unfamiliar with the wine region in their backyards.

“They know about Montauk. They know about the Hamptons. But in my circle of friends, not too many people know about the North Fork,” said Adam Steinberg, 34, of Forest Hills.

He noted that transportation issues might make it difficult for city dwellers to make the trip out east.

“I think this setting is a lot better than vineyard hopping,” said Steinberg, who purchased a bottle of Coffee Pot Cellars wine to enjoy with his crew on the bus ride back home.

It also helps smaller wine producers like Coffee Pot or the brand new Saltbird Cellars get their name out to the public.

“This is a great way to meet people and get feedback. People come out to the wineries and they don’t always get to talk to the winemaker,” said Adam Suprenant, who is owner and winemaker at Coffee Pot Cellars as well as Osprey’s Dominion. “For us [Coffee Pot] because we’re newer, we’re still fighting the battle of being recognized.”

See more photos from the event below.

Bruce Stevens, Steve Bedney and Ray Riordan of the blog "A Vintner's Tale."

Bruce Stevens, Steve Bedney and Ray Riordan of the blog, “A Vintner’s Tale.”

DSC_0276

Danny Muhr, Liz Puleo, Rachel Slutsky and Nicole Wish, all of Manhattan.

DSC_0280

Jessica Speiser and Matt Schwartz of Chelsea and Veleka Allen of Teaneck, New Jersey.

DSC_0277

Darlene and Ernie Anderson of Aquebogue.

DSC_0284

The offerings from Roanoke Vineyards.

DSC_0287

Phil and Lally Kelly of Jamesport and Gordon and Starr Munson of St. James.

DSC_0291

Pouring Raphael.

DSC_0294

Brian Heflich and Jenny Lund of Port Jefferson and Briana Lorenzo and Frank Milea of Leonia, New Jersey.

DSC_0298

Adam Suprenant of Coffee Pot Cellars talks wine with Patrice Drury of Westchester County.

DSC_0305

Under the tent at North Fork Crush.

DSC_0315

Andrew McCarthy and Robin Epperson-McCarthy of Saltbird Cellars.

DSC_0318

Lolita Delgado of Middle Village, Queens takes a selfie on the dance floor.

North Fork Crush.

North Fork Crush.