Manhattan’s Urban Winery

Finally made it to City Winery in Manhattan’s SoHo neighborhood on Sunday after reading about them for several years! What a cool spot…part winery (they make wine on-site), part restaurant/wine bar, part concert venue.

We stopped into The Barrel Room, a tasting room and 30-seat restaurant, within this huge facility for some wine and apps. They feature eleven wines on tap (very cool!) made right in the facility pumped up from the cellar downstairs. No bottles, no labels, no added sulfites! Rather than bottling all of their wines, winemaker French David Lecomte, puts the finished wines into stainless steel kegs. After every pour, their tap system preserves the wine with a thin layer of argon gas, keeping every pour fresh with not waste. We also had some great bites to go with the wine. Our two favorites wines after tasting most of them…

Sohovignon Blanc 2010

  • Grape Variety: Sauvignon Blanc organically grown from Windrem Vineyard, Lake County, CA
  • Aroma: Bright, melon
  • Taste: Lively, bright, notes of pineapple, kiwi and melon
  • My thoughts: Love the name, a nod to SoHo :) Stainless steel aging gave it a great crispness and enhanced the fruit notes. Also bought a bottle to bring home.

Petit Syrah 2010

  • Grape Variety: 100% Petit Syrah from Vino con Brio, Lido, CA
  • Aroma: Raspberries, vanilla
  • Taste: Dark fruit of black raspberries and plums rounded with sweet vanilla oak notes
  • My thoughts: Nice round dark fruit wine with several layers and hints of vanilla

The even cooler thing about City Winery is YOU can make your very own wine here! Through their “Barrel Ownership” program, members pick their grapes, participate in the crush, pick their barrels for aging (French or American oak), work with City Winery’s winemaking team through its development, pull samples for tasting as it matures (from six to twenty-four months), blend if necessary, then chose bottle style, closure and design their label. Grape selection includes Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Riesling, Roussane, Syrah, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel and Merlot from some of the finest vineyards in the U.S. (California, Oregon and New York), Chile and Argentina. Membership starts at Barrel Share (36 bottles for $1,800) and goes up to Corporate Barrel Owner (252 bottles for $12,000).

City Winery also is a concert venue (where you can also have dinner), has private event space, offers wine tasting classes and now offers tours of the facility.

Check it out next time you’re in SoHo. Cheers to wine in the city!

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