On Saturday Union Square Wines held the kickoff for the three-day, first anniversary of their new location on 4th Avenue and 13th street. Bringing in about a dozen of their favorite importers and distributors, they set up tasting stations all around the store and turned loose the herds of glass-in-hand sippers for six hours. Unlike the tastings that sometimes take place at your local wine stores with wines you do not know and are unlikely to see again the selection yesterday was chock full of heavy hitter bottles. Not that there is anything wrong with discovering some tasty $9.99 surprises for sunny grilling afternoons, but when the opportunity to taste Chateau de Beaucastel, Pahlmeyer, S.C. Guillard Gevrey-Chambertin and Torre Muga on someone else's dime appears jump on it.
Many other gems and values were abound at the tasting and the store is offering 30% off any 12 or more bottles of still wine – mixed cases allowed – for the rest of the weekend ending Monday evening. The deal of 30% off at a store with the selections as great as the ones here is nothing to ignore, working with the knowledgeable team led by wine director Jesse Salazar you can pick up some great deals on quaffers or score that super-expensive 2001 Rioja you always wanted but just could not allow yourself to afford.
Even better than the discounts and the Blowout Anniversary Tasting, any customer who comes by the store over this long weekend will be issued Savvy Sipper cards preloaded with 500 points. These cards – like little smart credit cards – track your accumulating points when you make purchases of wine at the store and are for use in their EnoMatic self-service wine tasting machines that run every day of the year. For the sake of clarity, the 500 points will allow you to access a few high-end tastes that run hundreds of points or a myriad of tastes at 15-30 points each from bottles in the $10-$15 bottle price range. As a bonus, after signing up for your card you will be on their mailing list going forward and never miss a tasting like the one on Saturday again.