Jeremy Adona is just the type of man you want to meet when navigating Brooklyn, especially when wine is concerned. He used to work at Artisanal Fromagerie and Bistro as well as one of Brooklyn’s best wine shops, Dandelion Wine, studied at the American Sommelier Association, and is now a Sommelier at Mario Batali’s Otto, where he also teaches wine and cheese pairings. Not only that, he’s got a couple of music projects going on that are definitely worth checking out. Which, as anyone living in New York knows, is the currency in Brooklyn.
Lucky for us, I got to sit down with Jeremy so we can all reap the benefits of this Brooklyn Renaissance man’s expertise in how to choose a good glass of wine without going completely broke, and sounding like you actually know what you’re talking about. Consider him the cool friend or older brother you never had. Here’s the cream of our conversation crop:
Best Places In Brooklyn For Wine:
Jeremy obviously knows a thing or two about a thing or two when it comes to wine, and lucky for us Brooklynites, in his experience, most Brooklyn wine spots are more fairly priced by the glass as compared with Manhattan. He also stressed that ambiance plays a huge part in enjoying a good glass of wine. I mean, how pleasant can it be to be sipping wine squished in between a bunch of douchebags at Spitzers, going deaf by the second? Despite the reputation of certain neighborhoods in Brooklyn being crowded and scene-y (ahem, Williamsburg), Jeremy maintains that Brooklyn is a very exciting place to be for wine right now, and there are tons of new and interesting places he’s dying to try. So, by no means is this list too comprehensive (or in any particular order), but it’s definitely a solid jumping-off point.
1. 5 Leaves. At the moment, a French Corvier is the only French RosÃ© by the glass: a must-have.
3. Dumont. Mostly the French ones
4. Vinegar Hill House
5. Hotel Delmano
5. Marlow and Sons
On Tasting and Sending Back Wine By The Glass:
* When ordering by the glass, smell and taste it. If it smells or tastes bad, have server taste it.
* Ask which bottle was opened more recently. You don’t want a bottle that has been open for more than a couple of days.
* Questions you should ask your server: Whats your best selling wine? Is there one that the server likes?
* If you want to send something back, they should take it back. A Sommalier can tell without a doubt if a wine has gone bad.
* Signs a Wine is bad: (1) If there is a complete lack of fruit, that means it’s corked, (2) If mishandled and red, it will taste acidic and vinegary, or effervescent– not to be confused with a sparking red.
Cheat Sheet for Sparking Reds:
* Frissante is a little sparkly, a finer wine type
* Spumante is a lot more sparkly, more concentrated, more common than Frissante.
Get Educated and Drink for FREE:
Dandelion Wine has free wine tastings on Thursdays 6-9pm. This is THE place to get educated on wine without the suffocating crowds and bank-breaking-ness.
When All Else Fails, Know Your Importers:
Kermit Lynch and Neil Rosenthal are 2 importers with great palates, most of their stuff is solid. If you don’t have a sophisticated palate and you just want to choose a decent glass of wine, ask your server if they have anything from these guys. Also a plus, you’ll totally sound like you know what you’re talking about.
Now That You Know A Bit About Wine, Keep Your Pulse On the Local Music Scene:
Jeremy has a little something for everyone. If you’re in the mood for being moody and acoustic, check out his most excellent solo work. I believe he just recorded an album, so stay tuned for more on that. If you’re in the mood to rock out a bit, check out Long Distance Darlings- who I’ve actually enjoyed live, and is essentially just Jeremy and a drummer. For something a bit more rock-based bluesy/jazzy/Black Rebel Motorcycle Club-y, check out Missing Ships.
Basically whatever Jeremy’s doing or talking about, you’ll want to know about it. Keep your eye on this one.