What to Drink at Eataly Downtown
Expect Italy's best seafood-ready whites, pizza-ready reds and organic spumante.
This Thursday, August 11th at noon, Eataly’s second New York location—in the heart of World Trade Center—will open its doors to the public. F&W caught up with beverage director Emily Molinari to find out what bottles and by-the-glass pours guests can expect to find in each of the bustling marketplace’s five distinct full-service restaurant spaces.
Molinari, who has spearheaded the beverage program at Eataly’s Flatiron location for the last 3 years, notes that the scope of the cellar at the new venue is quite large. “At Osteria della Pace alone, we have a 450-bottle selection,” she says. That equates to a stand-alone restaurant with an ambitious wine list in and of itself, yet the other four spaces each boast 25 additional wines by the glass. Toss in an extensive Italian beer program and a full bar that doesn’t skimp on Amaro, and you have what stands to be the most comprehensive sampling of Italy’s native grapes and grains. “Each wine list has its own personal identity to match the style and regional influence of the food,” she adds. So with all of that on offer, how to choose the restaurant that best suits your beverage mood?
Here, Molinari breaks it down by theme:
For brisk, seafood-ready whites: Pesce
“You could say the focus is on coastal whites,” she says, “but really, nineteen out of twenty regions of Italy are coastal.”
Wine highlights: 2015 Cecilia ‘Zeta del Tucano’ Elba Vermentino with any of the raw bar or crudo items and 2009 Fontanafredda ‘Marin’ Langhe Bianco (a blend of Riesling and the under-the-radar Nascetta grape) with heartier fish such as skate or salmon
For the sun-kissed wines of southern Italy and avant-garde craft beers: Pizza e Pasta
“We serve Rossopomodoro pizzas—a purveyor based in Naples, Italy—so the wines here will always have a southern focus.”
Wine highlights: 2013 Tenute Rubino ‘Punta Aquila’ Salento Primitivo, 2014 Feudi di San Gregorio Sannio Falanghina, or for a killer pairing with prosciutto sliced to order: either of the two Lambruscos by-the-glass
Beer highlights: Baladin Super Floreale and Birra del Borgo Maledetta
For Italy’s greatest hits: Piazza
“This is where to go for the big name classics—the Super Tuscans and Amarones—yet nothing exceeds $250.”
Wine highlights: 2008 MonteRossa ‘Cabochon’ Franciacorta Brut, 2011 Allegrini Amarone della Valpolicella Classico, and 2011 Le Macchiole Paleo Rosso (the all-Cabernet Franc bottling from Bolgheri superstar)
For your natural wine fix: Orto e Mare
“The restaurant is right next to the produce section and adjacent to a juice bar, so we took it as a fun opportunity to focus on organic, biodynamic, and sustainable wines.”
Wine highlights: 2012 Movia Goriska Brda Ribolla and NV De Conciliis ‘Selim’ Campania Spumante (“Not only is it organically farmed, but the winery is solar-powered,” says Molinari.)
For a cocktail followed by a new discovery: Osteria della Pace
“Rather than divide the list by region here, I divided it by grape variety. In the sparkling wine section, we have a Glera sub-section, so as the customers read the list, they might learn that Glera is the grape used in Prosecco. In that way, it can be a useful tool for learning something new about Italian wine.”
Wine highlights: 2013 Bastianich Colli Orientali del Friuli Vespa Bianco with the restaurant’s cacio e pepe, 2011 Montevetrano Colli di Salerno with the dry-aged ribeye and off-the-beaten path bubbles like 2014 Braida La Monella (a frizzante Barbera)