Food and wine are natural companions, so I’m polling some of New York’s most illustrious chefs to find out what kind of wine they are drinking off and on the job. After establishing they actually drink wine (a surprising number prefer beer!), I’m asking a few questions to find out who’s got a penchant for Piedmont, which chefs dislike oaky Chardonnay, and why there is no right or wrong way to enjoy wine.
Do you drink wine at home?
Yes! But I am a huge fan of gin; Hendricks, actually.
What types of wine do you like to drink? Any grape or style preferences? I enjoy both red and white Burgundy, Barolo and Grüner Veltliner. I prefer these wines because of the types of food I like to eat: I’m a fan of big flavors, so most of the time I need a wine to match it. As it gets warmer a nice rosé, or a lighter, crisp white is something I’ll gravitate towards as well.
Are there specific bottles you love or drink on repeat?
Right now I really like the Ronchi di Cialla Ribolla Gialla from Friuli that we have at The Marrow. For Barolo, I am a big fan of the 2007 Schiavenza Barolo Riserva ‘Prapo’, also at The Marrow. Two Rieslings I particularly like: The 2009 Theo Minges ‘Der Froschkönig’ Riesling Spätlese from Pfalz that we have at Kin Shop; and I love spicy foods with Dr. Bürklin-Wolf Riesling.
Do your preferences carry through to your wine lists?
I work with Alicia Nosenzo when creating the lists for the restaurants. We have a conversation about what style of list we want to pair with the food, but as for the specifics, she does the rest.
Where do you shop for wine?
Astor has a great selection, but closer to home in the West Village, I find Sea Grape to be a reliable stop.
Do you ever buy wine by the case?
Rarely. First, because my time at home can be limited, and second, because as most New Yorkers know, space is limited for storage!
Is there one perfect wine and food pairing for you?
It really depends on what I’m in the mood for. I love a nice Riesling with spicy food like Thai, but I’m also a steak guy and enjoy a big Barolo too.