From today's NY Time Dining article describing NYC's new restaurants this season:
BUSSACO Scott Carney, a master sommelier who has managed Gotham Bar & Grill, the Tonic and many other places, is opening this new wine bar, with a first growth not just in the bottle, but also in the oak of a communal table made from a tree that came down in Prospect Park. The American food will be by the chef Matthew Schaefer. 833 Union Street, (Seventh Avenue), Park Slope, Brooklyn, (718) 857-8828. Sept. 26.
There's a wine bar opening in my neighborhood. Hard to put my finger on exactly why, but this place sounds like a nightmare. Is it just a (bad) pun, or will this place be about big-shot Bordeaux and fancy decor? Will there be anything good to drink on this list? I'm betting on big Cabernet and expensive grilled prawns with lemongrass coconut foam.
From what I can tell, in NYC we often create wine bars the way we create movies in Hollywood: loads of special effects and flash, short on substance. Why can't someone open a wine bar that offers excellent and inexpensive wine in a pleasant atmosphere with some simple but good food? A place that can please everyone - young cool-cats out on a date, a group of friends hanging out together, parents looking to enjoy a glass and a simple meal in the neighborhood on babysitter night, a pair of wine-geeks, and a solo drinker with a newspaper? Do those places exist only in Paris?
I wish there were a place nearby where I could go on a Wednesday night and get an $8 glass of good Beaujolais, some sausages, bread, and salad. Is that too much to ask? And that place, my friends, would not require the pedigree of Master Sommelier or Gotham Bar & Grill. Not that there's anything wrong with those things. It's just that the place I want wouldn't need them.
I wish I could open this wine bar. Anyone have $300 grand? I'm telling you - it would be a hit in its friendly, delicious, and hugely satisfying simplicity.