restaurant wine lists

Discussion in 'Open Forum With Andrew Dornenburg & Karen Page' started by phoebe, Jan 18, 2007.

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  1. phoebe

    phoebe

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    What excites you and what turns you off about restaurant wine lists these days? This is a rather broad question, I know. I'm thinking in terms of which wines are included or excluded, prices, how the list is organized, and descriptions (if any).
     
  2. karen page

    karen page

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    Turn-ons:

    - Wine lists that include many offerings by the glass and/or the taste. Gramercy Tavern in NYC is one of our favorite places for this.

    - Wine lists that have some kind of central organizing force, whether alphabetical, by weight, by country, or by grape, etc.

    - Wine lists that reflect the cuisine they are meant to accompany. (We're tired of seeing only Chardonnay and California Sauvignon Blanc offered at Thai restaurants.)

    - Wine lists that include well-chosen offerings at reasonable price points (i.e. under $30/bottle).

    - Wine lists that appear on the restaurant's Web site, so that you can research and strategize your choices before taking a seat in the dining room.

    - Wine lists that include descriptors of the wine, e.g. their weight (i.e. light- vs. full-bodied), their volume (i.e. "quiet" vs. "loud"), their flavor characteristics (e.g. dry vs. off-dry or sweet, in the case of Rieslings; oaked vs. unoaked in the case of Chardonnays, etc.).


    Turn-offs:

    - Any wine lists that aren't a turn-on!

    If readers are interested, we'll mention some of our favorite restaurant wine lists that are both fun and informative, some of which are viewable online.


    Andrew Dornenburg & Karen Page
    Co-Authors, WHAT TO DRINK WITH WHAT YOU EAT
    Winner of the 2006 Georges Duboeuf Wine Book of the Year Award
    becomingachef.com
     
  3. phoebe

    phoebe

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    Absolutely! Especially those we can see on-line.

    We're fortunate in that our local wine shop, "The Wine House," has people working there who know wine and food matchings really well. We often just go in, tell them the recipes we're making, and they give us wine suggestions to match the ingredients, just like Karen & Andrew's book. The shop recently opened a restaurant upstairs where they serve small dishes and suggest wine characteristics that would compliment each dish. Here are links to the menu and to the wine list. What do you all think?

    http://upstairs2.com/dinnermenu/
    http://upstairs2.com/winesbytheglass/
     
  4. andrew dornenburg

    andrew dornenburg

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    <<Absolutely! Especially those we can see on-line.>>

    Here are just a few you might enjoy for their mammoth depth and scope:
    - BERN'S STEAK HOUSE (Tampa): bernssteakhouse.com
    - HEARTH (NYC): restauranthearth.com/wine.pdf
    - VERITAS (NYC): veritas-nyc.com/veritas.pdf

    Cheers,
    Andrew & Karen
    Andrew Dornenburg & Karen Page
    Co-Authors, WHAT TO DRINK WITH WHAT YOU EAT
    Winner of the 2006 Georges Duboeuf Wine Book of the Year Award
     
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