Summer of Riesling 2012
Top wine bars and restaurants around the nation celebrate…
Summer’s here: Break out the Riesling!
That’s what hundreds of the hottest wine bars and finest restaurants in the United States are doing by celebrating the “Summer of Riesling” from June 21 to September 22.
Some 300 wine bars and top restaurants in 32 states, joined by over 100 fine wine shops, are participating in the three-month celebration. The wine bars and restaurants are featuring at least three Rieslings by the glass along with their bottle offerings.
The International Riesling Foundation, created to promote Riesling as the world’s most noble and versatile white wine, sponsored the national promotion in 2011 and is doing so again in 2012. This year’s celebration has even gone international, with participation by restaurants in Canada, Germany, and the United Kingdom.
The “Summer of Riesling” concept was created in 2008 by Manhattan restaurateur Paul Grieco, General AND Manager of Hearth Restaurant, Terroir Wine Bar East Village, Terroir Tribeca, Terroir Murray Hill, and Terroir Park Slope. That year, the ONLY white wine that Terroir customers could enjoy was Riesling—30 different wines by the glass and 100 by the bottle—a radical move that has paid off handsomely.
The following two years the program expanded in various ways, including by enlisting 14 other Manhattan wine bars as part of the celebration and adding a concert where the only alcoholic beverage available was Riesling—no beer, no liquor. The Summer of Riesling even attracted visits by the German Wine Queen.
Never content with the status quo, in 2011 Paul took Summer of Riesling national, with support from the International Riesling Foundation. Last year, more than 225 top restaurants participated in the 94-day celebration, while in 2012 the number increased to 300 (and counting) in 32 states ranging from Alaska to Florida, California to New York, and dozens in between.
This year Paul officially kicked off the fifth Summer of Riesling with a midnight pig roast (complete with strudel) at Hearth as well as wine dinners at all his other restaurants. The event happily coincided with a large tasting by famed Riesling importer Terry Theise and many of the world’s top Riesling producers.
Participating restaurants include some of the country’s most famous: Spago Beverly Hills, Restaurant Gary Danko and Slanted Door in San Francisco, The French Laundry in Napa Valley, Websters Wine Bar in Chicago, B & G Oysters in Boston, Wild Ginger in Seattle, and, in New York, Bar Boulud, Craft, and Daniel—along with all the Terroirs, of course. For the full list, click here.
The restaurants select the wines they wish to feature, which may remain the same or change during the three month period. To add some fun and color, they receive special Summer of Riesling T-shirts, Riesling tattoos, buttons, window stickers, and lots of information about Riesling.
For more information on Summer of Riesling, visit www.summerofriesling.com, or follow the fun on Facebook and twitter. Information is also available on the International Riesling Foundation’s web site, www.drinkriesling.com.
Paul Grieco for Summer of Riesling information, PGrieco@restauranthearth.com, 646-602-1300
Jim Trezise for International Riesling Foundation, firstname.lastname@example.org, 585-394-3620