Red Hook Winery: An Important Offer

Posted by Robert Schagrin

Wine & Friendship
Amidst Devastation
2009 Red Hook Winery
Red Blend (Rebirth)

The Red Hook Winery is a project that's very close to our hearts. But after Hurricane Sandy's devastation, we had to feature this under-the-radar gem from the North Fork of Long Island's best vineyards.

This offer is about two of our staff's favorite people: Angel's Share's Mark Snyder and California winemaker, Abe Schoener.

We've been fans of Abe Schoener's Scholium Project since we flicked the switch on Crush's sliding front doors in 2005. And it's been fascinating to watch Abe apply his iconoclastic, relentlessly experimental winemaking at Red Hook Winery. Along with Angel's Share's Mark Snyder, who is the best domestic wine supplier that we've ever come across, we knew this project would be something special from the start.

The Crush staff has witnessed this process up close. Many have pitched in to help when the grapes arrived for their first vintage. This spring they hosted us at this magnificent winery.

Today, we break from the Crush mold and offer an incredible Bordeaux blend at special pricing.

I can't go any further without addressing the extent of the devastation that this important local winery has suffered in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. It felt important not to focus solely on this. I must say that it's been painful to see friends who feel so strongly for a neighborhood and a winemaking process and that have worked so hard to build a winery, be faced with such losses and such an enormous task of picking up the pieces.

We feel privileged to have had the opportunity to witness some of California's top talent apply their skills to grapes harvested from the young wine region of Long Island. Besides Abe, the famed California winemaker Robert Foley also makes wines at Red Hook. The day-to-day winemaking is handled by Christopher Nicolson, who worked at Sonoma's famed Pinot Noir producer Littorai.

We've always been keenly aware of the importance and the passion behind the project. Sadly, it took the recent tragic events to place just how deeply we care for these wines and place the project in proper focus. It seems imperative to give the Red Hook Winery some long deserved attention.

Interestingly, the impetus for this project wasn't vineyards, but the Red Hook neighborhood. Mark had an office in Red Hook and when Abe came out to visit, he too was immediately struck by the charm of the neighborhood. They both wanted to plant roots there and of course, fell back on what they knew: wine. (It's well worth checking out Levi Dalton's recent interview with Abe for more on the history of the Red Hook Winery and devastation they faced in Hurricane Sandy's aftermath.)

When they set out to find fruit sources on Long Island's North Fork in 2008, Abe says that it was in Joseph Macari's impeccably farmed vineyard that he realized the North Fork was capable of having truly great vineyards. Macari is an important source for the 2009 red blend on offer today along with some of their other favorite vineyards, like Jamesport and One Woman Vineyard.

It's a classic right bank Bordeaux blend - 65% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc and 15% Cabernet Sauvignon, with the Bordeaux comparison being apt here because the wine shares the herb-tinged plum fruits and the combination of power and freshness that you find in Pomerols. They nick-named it Rebirth, because after a very ornery first eight months it blossomed into a lovely aromatic wine.

As this wine was so aptly named, I wish them the best as they rebuild and offer his bottle today as an example of the fascinating work they've accomplished.

To order, please email us at or call the store at (212) 980-9463.

Robert Schagrin
Managing Partner
Crush Wine & Spirits