One Week in August

Posted: August 17th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Drinks, Event, News | Tags: | No Comments »

We’re excited about this weekend, which marks the start of the first annual North Shore Wine Week. The kickoff party is Saturday at Wine ConneXtion; information on the event is here. Andover’s Brasserie 28 will be serving up food samples that day, and Chef Matt Morello is the culinary chair of the entire event.

Morello said he’s slightly surprised by how well the concept has been received. “We have more than 30 restaurants, which is a great showing for the first year. I think when you offer a good product, it’s exciting to be able to partner with others who feel the same way.”

Morello said the theme behind his offerings at the kickoff party is smoke. One non-traditional element of each dish will be lightly smoked, including bourbon and tomatoes. At the restaurant, which Morello owns with his wife, there will be four flights of wine from its Napa wine station, which keeps wine temperature controlled and under pressure with argon gas, rather than in bottles. “This lets us offer amazing wines that most people can only buy by the bottle. It’s the freshest glass of wine—like opening a new bottle every time,” said Morello.

The Serenitee Restaurant Group is varying its Wine Week offerings by restaurant. At Alchemy in Gloucester, Sommelier Matt Rose has created a tapas pairing menu and is offering wines by the glass from the cellar list that are only available by the bottle during the rest of the year. At Latitude 43, you’ll find a raw bar pairing menu featuring oysters and sushi. And at Hamilton’s 15 Walnut just before the event (Thursday night), there’s a $50 five-course farm dinner with half glass wine and beer pairings for every course for $3 each.

At 62 Restaurant and Wine Bar (which will also be serving up samples on Saturday), Chef Tony Bettencourt is focusing on the relationship between food and wine. “Old world wines, or European wines, tend to pair better with food, but I wanted heighten the awareness of the lesser known varietals that people may not see as often,” said Bettencourt. “By pairing the dishes with these wines, diners can experience firsthand how pairing the right wine with food can make each better.”

The complete schedule of events is here, and if you make it to the kickoff party on Saturday, please make it a point to say hello–we love to meet readers and talk about our favorite restaurants.

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Without Restraint: North Shore Wine Week

Posted: August 4th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: 62 Restaurant & Winebar, Drinks, Event, Grand Trunk Imports, Turbine Wine Bar, Wine Connextion | Tags: , | 1 Comment »

“Pour out the wine without restraint or stay
pour not by cups, but by the bellyful
pour out to all that wull.”

So said Edumund Spenser in Epithalamion, and that’s precisely what’s happening during the fourth week of August on the North Shore.

The first annual North Shore Wine Week is taking place from August 21 to 27, and we’re excited to be part of the event. The kickoff party is being held on August 20 from 12:00 to 5:00 at Wine ConnecXtion in North Andover. It’s a free event, but you need to email vip@northshorewineweek.com to request an electronic ticket. There will be wine tastings all afternoon, paired with food from Brasserie 28, Oregano, 62 Restaurant and Wine Bar, Tuscan Kitchen, and Burtons Grill.

During the week, there are wine tastings and wine specials at restaurants and wine vendors all over the North Shore. For example, on Sunday from 5:00 to 9:00, you can sample a flight of four summer whites and sultry reds for $12 at 62 Restaurant and Wine Bar in Salem. On Wednesday from 6:00 to 9:00, Urban Wine Project is hosting wine and jazz night at Turbine Wine Bar in Lynn featuring the project’s 2009 Central Square Chardonnay and 2009 Oxford Street Pinot Noir. Everyone who purchases a glass of either wine will receive a complimentary appetizer with their first glass. Friday afternoon at Grand Trunk in Newburyport, there will be a free tasting of Spanish wines and 15% off all bottles during the tasting.

A schedule of events is here, and more are being added daily. We’ll post again with further details about events as the date nears.

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