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NH Wine Week 2012

Sunday, Jan. 22

• Peter Oldak, owner and winemaker from Jewell Towne Vineyards, will host a free barrel tasting of New Hampshire-made wines, on the hours, from noon to 4 p.m., at Jewell Towne Vineyards, 128 Whitehall Road, South Hampton. Call 394-0600.

Tuesday, Jan. 24

Carla Snow of A Grape Affair (agrapeaffair.com) will host a “Making Scents of Wine” workshop at Southern New Hampshire University, Pease International, 231 Corporate Drive, Portsmouth, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Tickets cost $30. For tickets, call 433-0160.

• A Stoli Ice Bar will be set up at Bedford Village Inn, 2 Olde Bedford Way, Bedford, from 5:30 to 10 p.m. today through Saturday, Jan. 28. Three bars will serve wine, martinis, beer and hot drinks. Two martini luges will also be set up and the Josh Logan Band will perform. Call 472-2001.

Wednesday, Jan. 25

• Ed Killian, winemaker from Souverain and Cellar 8, and Horizon Beverage Company will host a free bottle signing at the New Hampshire Liquor and Wine Outlet on I-95 southbound from 12:15 to 1:15 p.m., at the New Hampshire Liquor and Wine Outlet on I-95 northbound from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., and at the NH Liquor and Wine Outlet at Kings Highway Plaza, 28B Portsmouth Ave., Stratham, from 2:45 to 3:45 p.m.

• Roland Marandino, wine ambassador from Cecchi Family Estates, will host a free wine tasting and bottle signing at the New Hampshire Liquor and Wine Outlet at North Side Plaza, 1100 Bicentennial Drive, Manchester, from 4 to 6 p.m.

• Peter Oldak, owner and winemaker from Jewell Towne Vineyards, will host a free wine tasting and bottle signing at the NH Liquor and Wine Outlet at the Portsmouth Traffic Circle from 4 to 6 p.m.

• Rob Stuart, owner and winemaker from R. Stuart & Co., Antonio Zaccheo Jr., winemaker from Carpineto, Horizon Beverage Company and Wineberries, will host a free wine tasting and bottle signing at the NH Liquor and Wine Outlet, 27 Coliseum Ave., Nashua, from 4 to 6 p.m.

• Cristina Mariani-May, proprietor from Castello Banfi, Ed Killian, winemaker from Souverain and Cellar 8, and Horizon Beverage Company, will host a free bottle signing at the NH Liquor and Wine Outlet at the Portsmouth Traffic Circle from 4 to 6 p.m.

• Martignetti Companies of New Hampshire will host Joseph Carr, owner of Joseph Carr Wines, as a celebrity guest bartender at the Copper Door Restaurant, 15 Leavy Drive, Bedford, from 5 to 7 p.m. Call 488-2677.

• Martignetti Companies of New Hampshire will host Laely Heron, owner and winemaker from Heron Wines, as celebrity guest bartender at O Steaks and Seafood Restaurant, 11 S. Main St., Concord, from 6 to 8 p.m. Call 856-7925.

• Bedford Village Inn, 2 Olde Bedford Way in Bedford, www.bedfordvillageinn.com, 472-2001, will host a wine dinner with Mike Phillips of Michael and David Winery in Lodi, Calif., at 6 p.m. The four-course meal costs $85 per person.

• Rick Middleton, proprietor from Middleton Family Wines, and RP Imports will host a wine dinner at Tek-Nique, 170 Route 101, Bedford, from 6 to 9 p.m. Tickets cost $85. For tickets, call 488-5629.

• Bill and Betsy Nachbauer, owners and winemakers from Acorn Winery, and RP Imports will host a wine dinner at Bailiwicks Restaurant Wine & Martini Bar, 111 Main St. in Littleton, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $70. For tickets, call 444-7717.

• Granite Restaurant at the Centennial Hotel, 96 Pleasant St., Concord, 227-9000, graniterestaurant.com, will hold a wine dinner with Donny Sebastiani of Sebastini & Sons on Wednesday, Jan. 25, at 6:30 p.m. The dinner costs $55 and reservations are required.

• Alessandra Marino, brand manager from Cesari Winery Veneto, and Horizon Beverage Company, will host a wine sampler night at Tuscan Kitchen, 67 Main St., Salem, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Tickets cost $20. For tickets, call 952-4975.

• Carla Snow of A Grape Affair (agrapeaffair.com) will host a wine and cheese workshop at Southern New Hampshire University, Pease International Tradeport, 231 Corporate Drive, Portsmouth, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Tickets cost $35. For tickets, call 433-0160.

Thursday, Jan. 26

• Cristina Mariani-May, proprietor of Castello Banfi, and Horizon Beverage Company will host a free bottle signing at the New Hampshire Liquor and Wine Outlet on I-95 southbound, from 11:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.

• Antonio Zaccheo Jr., winemaker from Carpineto, and Horizon Beverage Company will host a free bottle signing at the NH Liquor & Wine Outlet on I-93 northbound, from noon to 1 p.m., and at the New Hampshire Liquor & Wine Outlet on I-93 southbound, from 1:15 to 2:15 p.m.

• Ed Killian, winemaker from Souverain and Cellar 8, and Horizon Beverage Company will host a free bottle signing at the NH Liquor and Wine Outlet at Southgate Shopping Mall, 269 DW Highway, Nashua, from noon to 1 p.m., at the NH Liquor and Wine Outlet, 27 Coliseum Ave., Nashua, from 1:15 to 2:30 p.m., and at the NH Liquor and Wine Outlet at Bedford Grove Plaza, 5 Colby Court, Bedford, from 3:15 to 4:45 p.m.

• MS Walker will host a wine sampler tasting at the New Hampshire Liquor and Wine Outlet at the Portsmouth Traffic Circle from 4 to 6 p.m.

• The Winter Wine Spectacular for Easter Seals will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Radisson Hotel, 700 Elm St., Manchester. In addition to the 1,600 wines at the Grand Tasting, the event will feature the Bellman’s Cellar Select high-end tasting room, from 6 to 8 p.m., with more than 30 exclusive wines and food, a grand silent auction and a raffle. Tickets cost $65 for the Grand Tasting, $125 for the Bellman’s Cellar Select Room. For tickets, call 888-368-8880 or visit eastersealsnh.org.

Saturday, Jan. 28

• Pine State Beverages will host a wine sampler tasting at the New Hampshire Liquor and Wine Outlet at Portsmouth Traffic Circle from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

• EJ Gallo will host a wine sampler tasting at the New Hampshire Liquor and Wine Outlet at 27 Coliseum Ave. in Nashua from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

• MS Walker will host a wine sampler tasting at the New Hampshire Liquor and Wine Outlet at 27 Coliseum Ave. in Nashua from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.





Pour us
A look at the week of juice

01/12/12



It’s Wine Week again in New Hampshire and that means winemakers from around the world are flocking to the Granite State to share the bottled fruits of their labor directly with the consumers.

“There is something in the wine that when you take your first sip, you want a second one,” said Serge Dore, owner of Serge Dore Selections in New York. “One sip is asking for the second one because it’s refreshing. A bottle of wine could easily go when two people are having fun, and at the end of the bottle, if you say, ‘I would enjoy another glass of that bottle,’ it means the wine was good.”

“All of the wines I bring into the country are all wines that follow that trend,” Dore said. “First of all they are refreshing but most of all we want the customer to have fun.”

The ninth annual Winter Wine Spectacular for Easter Seals of New Hampshire will be held at the Radisson Hotel at 700 Elm St. in Manchester on Thursday, Jan. 26, from 6 to 9 p.m. The event has sold out every year, according to event organizers.

“For the cost of $65 per person people pretty much treat it like a night out,” said Christine Hardy, director of events and corporate relations at Easter Seals of New Hampshire. All ticket holders will be given a Riedel wine glass for the tasting. Hardy noted that for the restaurant owners, winemakers and wine suppliers the Grand Tasting also serves as a networking event.

More than 1,800 wines will be poured at the Spectacular, with 300 of those exclusively offered at the Bellman’s Cellar Select tasting, including a wine valued at $300 a bottle. Only 200 tickets will be sold for the Select portion of the event, which will run from 6 to 8 p.m. “People can go to the Cellar Select or the Grand Tasting at their leisure,” Hardy said of the privileges that come with the $125 VIP ticket. Cellar Select ticket holders will also have a shot at winning a prize donated by Bellman’s Jewelers valued at $1,000 and access to a special silent auction.

“We cater to two different kinds of wine aficionados: those who can afford to buy it and the ones that want to say they’ve had a $300 bottle of wine,” Hardy said. The Bellman’s Cellar Select will be moved to the café area of the hotel this year to give a softer look to the intimate tasting, she said.

The only major change planned for this year’s Grand Tasting will be an aesthetic one, Hardy said. Color and warmth will be added to the large, fluorescent-lighted space, she said.

“We’re going to be really pulling out all stops to jazz it up even more as far as looks and appeal,” Hardy said. “People were iffy on the fluorescent lighting last year and brought it out to our attention. We want to make sure we address it and make things as appealing and inviting as we … know the event to be.”

A wine education

The tasting helps the consumer make educated wine purchases, Hardy said.

“Most people in today’s economy are not going to drop $15 or $20 on wine if they don’t know if they will like it,” she said. The program for the Spectacular offers ticket-holders space to take notes about the wines they sample, to use on future trips to New Hampshire Liquor & Wine Outlets.

“They can talk to winemakers about if it’s good with this meal … ask specific questions, shake their hand and clink glasses with them,” Hardy said.

The number of winemakers who make the trip from around the world to take part in the Spectacular is impressive, Hardy said. “[The Winter Wine Spectacular] is the Super Bowl of the week,” she said. “Winemakers will come early for wine tastings, bottle signings, there are dinners at countless restaurants in the state leading up to the Spectacular … it’s really exciting.” Many of the winemakers also extend their stay in the Granite State after the main event, she said.

Hardy noted the interaction with the chefs and wine personalities as her favorite part of the Spectacular.
“Those are the people that really are the essence of these restaurants and the wineries,” she said. “They’re the ones with the imagination behind these places.”

A record number of local eateries — 28 — have stepped up to take part in this year’s Spectacular, including newcomers like the Tuscan Kitchen, Hooked and 36 deLux.

“We literally have a waiting list of restaurants to participate,” Hardy said. “We had to make room to get a few in that really wanted to be a part of the event.” All of the eateries that took part in last year’s event have signed on for the 2012 Spectacular. “It’s a compliment to the event and its popularity,” Hardy said. “…we’re so honored to have the event be so popular because it helps Easter Seals in so many ways.”

Last year’s event raised more than $135,000 for the Easter Seals of New Hampshire Family Center for Early Support and Services, a program for children up to 3 years old throughout the state with mental and physical disabilities. The amount brought in by the Spectacular through both ticket sales and auction items has increased over the years, Hardy said.

Students from the New Hampshire Institute of Art once again created eight to 10 wine- and food-centric art pieces to be auctioned off at the Spectacular. The school, which receives a portion of the auction proceeds, has made creating pieces for the event part of its curriculum. Each year a student-designed image is used as the program cover and in flyers for the tasting.

Stock your cellar on the spot

Barcode stickers will be handed out by wine representatives for each of the wines offered at the tasting, to allow consumers to easily purchase the wines they enjoyed at the hotel immediately following the event. The stickers came as a suggestion from the state liquor commission. Three cashier stations will be set up outside the Spectacular entrance to cash out ticket-holders wishing to purchases wines they sampled. Wines ordered will be available for pick-up at the New Hampshire Liquor & Wine Outlet of the buyer’s choosing. Consumers ordering multiple bottles of wine at the event receive a discount, Hardy said.

“We are cutting-edge with this sticker system,” Brassard said. “It’s part of the other thing suppliers and winemakers love about this event. They can actually see how their sales turn out that evening.”

The amount of wine sold at the New Hampshire Winter Wine Spectacular increases every year, Brassard said. She noted that nearly 4,500 bottles were sold at the 2011 event.

Nicole Brassard, wine marketing director at the state liquor commission, said it is the winemakers taking part in New Hampshire Wine Week that have made the event an ongoing success.

“I think people like hearing directly from them about their lifestyle and what it takes to grow grapes and produce wine for the general market,” Brassard said. “And vice versa, I think the winemakers continue to come because they love the access they get to consumers here.”

Brassard said that as a whole New Hampshire Wine Week celebrates what is already being done with wine in the Granite State throughout the year. LaBelle Winery, Jewell Towne Vineyards and Moonlight Meadery are among the local participants in this year’s week-long wine celebration.

“I think it’s a wonderful opportunity for them to get exposure with the consumers that go to these tastings,” Brassard said.

Other than the Spectacular, both free and paid wine events have been scheduled throughout the week at various locations across the state, including dinners at many local restaurants.

“If you choose to go to one of the dinners, it is an experience to be able to sit in a small setting and have our local chefs prepare food with the winemakers’ wine and have them kind of work together to have an intimate dinner with a select few,” Brassard said.

“The favorite part for me [about Wine Week] would be the gratification in hearing all the stories from the various people about what they experienced during wine week, who they met and what their new favorite wine is,” Brassard said. “It makes all this work worthwhile for sure.”






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