What do you get when you mix local artwork, New York wines, small-batch whiskeys, innovative pairings, sustainable cuisine and a lineup of community-enhancing programs? Brooklyn Oenology, or B.O.E., New York City’s first urban winery.
Located in Brooklyn’s creativity hub of Williamsburg, this woman-owned establishment was started by Alie Shaper in 2006 with the first vintages being a 2005 Merlot and 2005 Chardonnay. The main goal was — and still is — to promote sustainable, high-quality New York products. In their cozy tasting room you can choose to sit at the bar or a table to peruse an expansive wine list showing varietals and blends all sourced from New York — mainly Long Island and the Finger Lakes — with the option to have a taste, a glass or a bottle to stay or to go. Along with the 20+ wine choices, B.O.E.offers tastings of New York craft spirits and ciders, with everything from Kings County Chocolate Flavored Whiskey (Brooklyn) to Atsby NY Vermouth “Armadillo Cake” (Long Island) to Delaware Phoenix Distillery Walton Waters Absinthe (Walton).
As B.O.E. is all about creating experiences, tastings can be enhanced with a flights menu, farmstead cheeses and artisanal charcuterie boards, and interesting pairings like wine and chocolate or whiskey and pickles.
“From the beginning Alie Shaper created Brooklyn Oenology to raise awareness of the quality of New York wines in the vital New York City market and beyond,” says Craig Kayaian, B.O.E.’s sales and marketing consultant. “By bringing the first urban winery in New York City, B.O.E. offered New Yorkers a local wine experience complimentary to the wine regions around our state, and also to the culinary destination for which New York City is known, while providing a local, quality, interesting and ‘greener’ alternative to the wines from other global growing regions with which many consumers had previously been more familiar.”
Even if you don’t buy a bottle, you should make sure to check out the label artwork, which is created by local New York artists.
Says Kayaian, “Brooklyn Oenology creates a synergy between the creative talents of our local visual artists and the agricultural ‘artists’ in our State’s local vineyards.”
This is just one of the ways B.O.E. works to enhance the community, with others being their regular local artist exhibitions in the tasting room; monthly $1 oyster events; live music happenings; literary readings; and the hosting of a slew of local visiting chefs from superb venues like Mayanoki Sushi, Scharf & Zoyer and Brooklyn Cured.
Most recently, B.O.E. was chosen by the New York Department of Agriculture to operate the first Taste NY Stores at New York’s LaGuardia and John F. Kennedy Airports. The initiative is part of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s program aiming to increase profits for local New York food and beverage creators. If traveling, make sure to check them out for a true taste of sustainable New York.
This article originally appeared on Drive the District