Uncorkings 6/14/2010

Top industry stories of last week plus an award-winning St. Germain-based cocktail recipe.

According to a recent Wall Street Journal report, New York City’s restaurant industry is showing signs of recovery. Restaurateurs say they are “cautiously optimistic,” and the average price of wine bottles sold appears to be creeping slightly higher.

French wines are struggling to make a comeback in the U.S. market, with dollar sales down 14.7% and volumes down 8.3% in the 4 weeks to May 16, according to IRI off-premise scan data.

Drinking well, doing good: PONCHO (Patrons of Northwest Civic, Cultural and Charitable Organizations) raised $915,000 for the arts with its International Wine Auction, exceeding fund raising expectations for the year.

Meanwhile, Jacob’s Creek is partnering with Share Our Strength in a campaign starting July 15th to raise money for the charity, which fights child hunger. During the campaign, for every glass poured, Jacob’s Creek will be donating $1 to Share Our Strength.

Finance executive William Foley signed a letter of intent to purchase highly regarded Sonoma County producer Chalk Hill Winery, adding to his rapidly expanding wine portfolio.

DIY wine tasting: TastingRoom has partnered with six Napa wineries to create wine-tasting kits of four to six sample-size (50 ml) bottles from each vineyard's portfolio. Plans call for offerings from 14 states by the end of the summer.

Andrew Mansinne steps into the role of president at fine wine and spirits importer Aveníu Brands.

Long Island winery Bedell Cellars appointed Richard Olsen-Harbich as winemaker. He was formerly the winemaker at Raphael, and prior to that, Hargrave (now Borghese) and Bridgehampton Winery.

The Wine Media Guild of New York inducted four writers into their “Hall of Fame”: Michael Broadbent, Karen MacNeil, Dan Berger, and posthumously, Andre Simon.

Bobby McCoy of Boston’s Eastern Standard took first place in the St-Germain 3rd Annual Can-Can Classic Cocktail Competition, winning $5,000 for his cocktail, Elixir Alpestre.

Elixir Alpestre

2 oz. Bols Genever
3/4 oz. St-Germain
1/4 oz. Becherovka
1 Dash Angostura Orange Bitters
6 Drops Pernod Absinthe

Method: Combine all ingredients in a shaker tin over ice and shake. Strain into a large coupe glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.

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