Saturday, December 01, 2007

New York, New York (1)

I have been away for a few days on a family trip to NYC - Rockefeller Plaza, the Rockettes, Statue of Liberty, etc. While not a wine trip, I had a few neat experiences.

The first was Landmarc in Tribeca. When faced with the impossible task of finding a restaurant that was "kid friendly" AND had a good wine list, Rob's girlfriend Ellyn delivered. The kids loved "the fancy restaurant" and daddy loved the wine list - hey, I wasn't driving anywhere!

We started with the 2004 Catena Alta Malbec (my receipt says it was the '03, but I am pretty sure it was the 2004). My intent was simple - Rob and Ellyn had never enjoyed a malbec before, so this was my weapon to change their mind. A terrific wine, with great poise and elegance, velvety tannins good acidity and present, but not omnipresent, fruit. Drinking well now, this could also do with a few years in the cellar. Price: $ 69 (menu).

But we did not avoid the fruit bombs. Next up was the 2002 Clarendon Hills Grenache. Big, fresh, ripe cherry fruit, I was shocked at how fruit forward this was - as Rob said "now I know what they mean when they say 'fruit bomb'". Balanced, with velvety tannins and modest acidity, it was a terrific drinking wine, but not a great match for food.

Now these are wines that can be found on many a wine list, so what is so great about Landmarc? What they do right is a "reasonable" markup. That Catena is $50 in the store - a markup of less than 50%! They also had decanters, and used them. So, kid friendly, great food and reasonable wine markups? Outstanding - highly recommended. Thank goodness Rob finally got the good sense to find a woman who knows these things!

Next up: table wine at a pizza joint...

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