Mohawk Valley Winery brings elegance to Varick St.
After more than a year of blood, sweat and joyful tears the highly anticipated opening of Central New York’s newest winery Mohawk Valley Winery is upon us. Joint owners Lynn Fox and Edward Alsheimer started out with a friendship and a love of wine. The pair were on a wine tour when the conversation came about to pursue a love and dream of opening their own winery. Almost two years from that conversation, their dream is becoming a reality.
Recently the pair opened up their winery to the media for a sneak peek of the décor, to sample products and to meet the staff. After taking everything in we were extremely impressed with the professional dedication that has shined through from their original vision of what the owners wanted to accomplish. The industrial yet modern look of the winery is the first thing that catches your eyes immediately when you walk in, then you are drawn into the wooden cutout of a large wine barrel hung from the back wall that can be used for pictures to document your visit to the winery. After that you can look over to see the wooden wine rack storage behind the granite topped bar with stainless steel taps that flow up to four brands of wine on each. After sitting down at the bar you can take the opportunity to look over and see the multiple stainless steel vats of their house wines fermenting in a separate room enclosed in glass for all to see.
We got a chance to ask co-owner Alsheimer a few questions to shed some light on questions we all share in lieu of their opening day coming up this week.
Hall: When is the big day that the doors of the winery will open to the public?
Alsheimer: We are set to open at 4 p.m., Friday, Dec. 11.
Hall: What will the hours of operation be starting out?
Alsheimer: 4 p.m. to midnight, Mondays and Tuesdays; 4 p.m. to 1 a.m., Wednesday through Saturday; and Noon to 6 p.m., Sundays.
Hall: Will you have any local food products available on your menu?
Alsheimer: Yes we will. There will be products ordered from Pulaski Meat Market from right here in Utica, cheeses from Three Village Cheese Co. in Newport, NY amongst other current and future items on our menu will also be ordered local as much as possible too.
Hall: What made you guys decide to open a winery on Varick Street in Utica which has been in the past known for a party type atmosphere?
Alsheimer: Well the location we chose was right in between the Adirondack Distillery Co. and the F.X. Matt Brewing Co. and we thought why not also add a winery on Varick Street to enhance the brewery district. We also wanted to help draw a different crowd down here that normally did not have a place to come to that is purely focused on wine. I also think it is good for all the businesses down here – hopefully the customers will sample from other businesses that neighbor us as well.
Hall: What can people expect when they walk through the doors of the winery?
Alsheimer: They can expect an elegant and sophisticated environment with top of the line products, service and atmosphere that has become a growing trend in the area.
Hall: How much wine can the winery produce each year?
Alsheimer: We are expected to produce on average 50,000 bottles of wine per year. We will also be importing 20 different brands of wine produced from grapes all over the country and all over the world. We will carry dessert wines, ice wines and even Merlot’s from places such as Chile to help create a very wide variety.
Hall: Is the Mohawk Valley brand available for purchase in other establishments?
Hall: What type of menu can we expect to see?
Alsheimer: We will have a light pairing menu of meat, seafood & cheese platters with salads drizzled in a wine infused white vinaigrette. We will also have wine flavored desserts including an infused chocolate ganache.
Hall: We heard a rumor there will be wine slushies?
Alsheimer: That is correct. We will carry four flavors of wine slushies and we plan on introducing them during the warm weather months.
Hall: Will there be live music?
Alsheimer: Yes, we plan on having live music at different times to be determined including on “Wine Wednesday’s” on our outdoor patio that holds at least 150 people which we will announce more information on in the upcoming future.
Hall: How many people will be employed at the winery?
Alsheimer: We plan on employing anywhere from 15-20 personnel and that may grow in the future. The wine making will be done predominately by co-owner Lynn Fox.
For winery and employment information: http://www.mohawkvalleywinery.com/
The Fuze Magazine
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