Uncork New York!: City Winery Hosts an Empire State Wine Fest

Climbing aboard the locavore bandwagon is tricky for Manhattanites. Most of our acreage is covered in concrete. And heavily populated. Greenmarkets are a help, although less so when it comes to wine. There’s only one homegrown vintage, “Château Latif,” cultivated in a backyard on E. 92nd Street. It’s not widely distributed. Expanding our immediate options is City Winery, Michael Dorf’s newish restaurant slash concert hall slash full-on winemaking operation. There’s some precedent for Manhattan fermentation. Our humble island was the first spot in the state to cultivate grapes, with the Dutch putting down vines in the 1600’s. The rest of New York soon followed, creating what’s now a thriving wine industry.

The last three decades have been particularly fruitful, with the number of Empire State wineries increasing by a factor of ten. To sample some of those vintages without racking up the miles on the Zipcar, head to City Winery this Sunday, December 6, for Uncork New York!. Nearly three dozen wineries will be represented, from Long Island to the Hudson Valley to the Finger Lakes and beyond. You can sample some 100 wines, and should you have any locavore entertaining coming up, buy some to take home. There will also be Empire State cheese, ice cream, bread, and fruit, among the dozen-plus purveyors. Tickets are $45 and also include sample tastes from NYC restaurants. Park Slope fave Palo Santo will be serving anticuchos de puerco, Jimmy’s No. 43 is planning a rabbit cassoulet, and Il Buco is covering dessert, plating panna cotta with aged balsamico. That’s one of the nice things about living in Manhattan: local is so often world class.

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