Sunday, July 14, 2013

Weekend Roundup - Days of Wine & Oysters

I'm still putting the finishing touches on 
Oysters and White Merlot at Sherwood House Vineyards
Photo: NK 
tomorrow's post, so I figured I'd instead share a quick rundown of our weekend goings on. As our days took shape, two themes, perhaps relatively unsurprising themes for those who know us, began figuring in heavily - 

Oysters and Wine. This past rainy Saturday gave rise to an impromptu trip to a few vineyards on Long Island's North Fork. 

Now I know that there's only so long we'll be able to get away with such spontaneous frivolity,  but let me tell you, I am savoring every  minute. Plus, we deserved a break after spending most of the day doing chores.  

Treat yourself, I always say. 
Love this, Photo: NK 

For me, The North Fork is an inspiring local destination. It's beautiful, laid back, and an ideal place to head for good wine, fresh produce 

(check out our other North Fork and nearby Hamptons-inspired posts), 

and wonderful local food specialties. Now I'm no wine expert, but I have learned a bit more about the subject in recent years. (details on our Napa wine adventure HERE). The most important thing to remember is that wine tasting should not be intimidating. You don't need to have exhaustive tasting vocabulary or wine knowledge to enjoy wine. Also - Wine goes with everything! Take it from George. 

Especially Oysters.

As far as tasting wine in the North Fork, 8 to 15 dollars will usually get you a comprehensive wine tasting. You can find many North Fork vineyards like the two we've spotlighted below that are casual and un-stuffy in style, but they do run the gamut.

Better yet, a good winery will encourage you to take your time and linger. Some will even let you bring a picnic. Relax. Bonus - Many of our favorite vineyards offer Oysters on Summer Weekends - sometimes even live music. Hey vineyards: You had me at wine, now you're just showing off. And I love it.

Here we go:  
Sherwood House Vineyards  Jamesport Tasting Room (other locations in Mattituck, NY)
Event Barn at Sherwood House, Photo: NK 
Highlights - An adorably appointed, cozy tasting room bustles during the high season. The staff is friendly and fairly knowledgeable. Sherwood wines are, overall, good but there are a few that standout from the pack.

Extras - Sherwood's Jamesport Tasting Room serves Oysters on many Summer Weekends. They also offer great live music, and the converted 1860's farmhouse that houses the main facility has many rooms to meander though or relax in.The main area's fireplace that becomes a focal point in the colder months, and there are also several attractive outdoor spaces for balmy days. A super-rustic yet lovely event barn and a cool vintage home decor and art store attached. Like Pottery Barn on steroids. 
Our Wine Pick
Sherwood's 2010 Chardonnay

Photo: NK 

A beautiful chandelier in Sherwood's adjoining home goods shop was wonderful on the eyes. 

Oysters at Sherwood House Jamesport Location, Photo:NK

And of course, 

the local Oysters!

Tasting Room at Paumanok Vineyards, Photo: NK 
Aquebogue, NY

Highlights - Paumanok's large tasting room with lofted ceilings is very inviting, but is less personal and homey in feel than the interior at Sherwood House. It is the outdoor tables overlooking the vineyard that are the most lovely.  

Paumanok, and many of the local wineries for that matter, also offers Oysters on select weekends, but we'd had our fill by then - that is, until dinnertime rolled around. 
Our Wine Pick
Bloody Mary Oyster Shooters - YUM - Photo: NK 
Paumanok's 2010 Chenin Blanc

Later, we headed to Squiretown Restaurant and Bar on the South Fork where they awesomely offered Raphael Vineyard wines on tap

That was a first for me. 

We very much enjoyed our dinner at Squiretown, and, to cap off our Oyster-filled day, kicked the meal off with these super spicy and tasty Bloody Mary Oyster Shooters. 

Hope you had a great weekend filled with the people and foods that you love as well. 

See you next time. 

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