Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Forget Red Hook-Made Beer; Get Ready for Red Hook-Made Wine

Don't look at your calendar. It isn't April 1 and this is not a joke post.

Beginning next year, Red Hook, Brooklyn, will be a winemaking hotbed. At a wine dinner last night at Stanton Social, Abe Schoener, the cult California winemaker responsible for the boutique line of Scholium Project wines, announced that he would start making wine in deepest, darkest Brooklyn, working out of the old Beard Street Warehouse.

Schoener, an affable and erudite man with a beefy frame, short gray hair and thick glasses, said he planned to ship grapes down from the Hudson Valley wine region, possibly working with the Millbrook Winery and possibly vinifying Tocai Friulano grapes, a varietal native to Friuli, Italy; Millbrook is one of the few U.S. growers of this grape.

Schoener said he was going to use Red Hook the old-fashioned way: the grapes would arrive by ship and delivered using an actual extant slip at the Beard Street Warehouse.

The winemaker has won acclaim for his iconoclastic takes on Sauvignon Blanc, Verdelho, Syrah and Petite Sirah, which are produced on various parcels throughout California and bottles in small amounts.

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