Sean Larkin at NWF Gala

Sean Larkin at NWF Gala

How can it be that Memorial Day Weekend has come and gone?  It seems like yesterday we were setting up the currentVintage table at the Nantucket Wine Festival Yacht Club Grand Tasting.  With over 100 wineries, dozens of food booths, live cooking demos, etc, the Grand Tasting is a tremendous event—and a logistical marvel.  Our table featured vintage grape jewelry—truly, much more tasteful than it sounds!  1930s celluloid, 1950s Mexican sterling, 1960s Lucite; a collection of amazing, interesting pieces, both novelty and collectibles.  Anyway, the patrons and the vendors loved it and we had a super weekend.

I was delighted to find our table right across from the charming Scotsman, Sean Larkin.  We sell his yummy Larkin cab franc and Jack Larkin merlot.  I feel a certain connection to Sean, because he was the first winemaker to visit currentVintage the week we first opened.  I might not have known it was him, had we not had a bottle of Larkin prominently featured on the shelf, to which Sean proudly & loudly responded, “I’m Sean Larkin!”. He brought in his buddies (fellow winemakers Jim Barbour, Ray Coursen and John Arns) to show off and we became fast friends.

Last Fall, at an auction to benefit the Nantucket New School, we bought a dinner catered by Sarah Leah Chase and a bottle of Jack Larkin Merlot.  One memorable night this spring, the dinner was realized at the home of Chris & Greg Bourbeau, where Sarah prepared a spectacular, world class dinner for us.  Beginning with a sensual warm olive and grape appetizer and featuring lamb with lavender honey, every course was flawless.  We poured the Jack Larkin and all agreed it was like a first-rate right bank Bordeaux. Sarah emailed the next day that the JL merlot was” truly among the top 10 wine-tastings epiphanies I have experienced in my lifetime”—high praise from a world-renowned author and caterer who has published cookbooks of her wine and dining experiences pedaling through Burgundy and Provence!

Another great night was in New York:  opening week of the swank re-gussified Minetta Tavern.  It being the hot new Keith McNally boite, all the beautiful people were there…Jennifer Creel was next to us in silver sequins; I was in jeans (thankfully black).  Curiously, the beautiful people across from us had an unopened bottle of Jack Larkin on the table.  We spoke to the waiter and then the sommelier, only to learn that the wine was not on the wine list.  Disappointed, we finally asked the beautiful woman where she got the coveted bottle, and she replied, “I’m Stephanie, Jack Larkin’s Mother.”  The bottle was a gift for her dinner friends, but in a brilliant marketing move, she had the wine perched on the edge of the table unwrapped, for all to see.  And so, luckily for us, wherever we go there seem to be far fewer than six degrees of separation from Sean Larkin.

Gushing Frank Bruni Minetta Tavern review: