How did I wind up in Brooklyn after a Wine Media Guild tasting of 18 burgundies presented by Charles Curtis, MW and author of The Original Grand Crus of Burgundy? The answer is: I was invited by Stuart Leaf, a wine collector, to the Brooklyn Heights Wine Bar & Kitchen, 50 Henry Street (718-855-5595).
Stuart and his partner Mark Lahm, are the perfect hosts and they sat down with me and the other guests, Harriet Lembeck, and Charles Curtis, and his wife. After a few minutes Mark and I realized that we had a mutual friend and that we had once had dinner together.
At the wine bar, you can order wine by the glass, half carafe and bottle. There is also a reserve list and the wine that caught my eye was the Antinori Chianti Classico Riserva 1970 for $125.
Stuart suggested we start with the Cigarra White 2013 (Portugal) made from the Fernao, Arinto and Sera Nova grapes. It has hints of citrus fruit with good acidity and went very well with the mousse of foie gras.
Charles Curtis suggested a wine from the reserve list, the very impressive Guigal Hermitage Blanc 1994 (France) made from 95% Marsanne and 5% Roussanne. This is a complex and elegant wine that was my pleasure to drink.
I enjoyed it with the mini lobster roll; it was so good I should have had two of them.
I suggested three wines from the Grimaldi winery in Piedmont.
Grimaldi Barbera d’Alba 2004 made from 100% Barbera. The wine has hints of dried cherries with good acidity and was showing no sign of age.
Grimaldi Barbaresco 1999 100% Nebbiolo The wine has hints of red fruit, cherries and a touch of spice with soft tannins.
Grimaldi Barolo 2001 100% Nebbiolo. It has aromas and flavors of red fruit, tar, tea and chocolate. 2001 was an excellent vintage.
Stuart then ordered the Podere la Vigna Brunello 1999 (Tuscany) 100% Sangiovese. This is an elegant wine with aromas and flavors of black fruit, blueberries and blackberries.
With the Italian wines we had asparagus soup, assorted cheese and charcuterie.
With the Sineann Gewurtztraminer 2013 (Oregon) we had the bread pudding.
The wine bar also has a historic blended scotch whiskey selection and Mark said it represents possible the largest publicly available collection of extremely old blended scotch whiskies in the U.S. There are 100 carefully curated old whiskies, bottled between the 1950s and 1970s (distilled 5 – 25 years before bottling). I finished with the Dewar’s Ancestor 12 year. The perfect end to a wonderful dining and drinking experience.