December has always been one of my favorite months. My birthday, Christmas, and New Years all coming within a few weeks of each other has usually meant a month of nearly nonstop fun, festivities, and drinks.
To add to this fun, festive cheer, most of the best wine stores in NYC are holding free tasting events throughout the month of December. I’ve put together a list of free tastings at some of my favorite stores below. Enjoy!
Sherry Lehmann is really outdoing itself this year with 27 days of bubbly tastings. The premise is to pour wines 27 different Champagne houses throughout the month of December. Some highlights:
- December 1st Pol Roger
- December 2nd Veuve Cliqout
- December 7th Bollinger
- December 9th: Perrier Jouet (last year they poured the 2006 Belle Epoque)
- December 10th Louis Roederer
- December 17th Krug
- December 18th Dom Peringon
- December 19th Billecart Salmon
The only days they aren’t pouring something are December 6, 8, 13, 15, 16, 25, 27, 28. More information here
Crush Wine & Spirits on Thursday, December 3rd, is hosting their 9th annual Champagne Gala featuring 40 different sparkling wines. They ask you to RSVP and sign up for a 30 minute timeslot. More information here
PJ Wine on December 5th from 1pm-4pm is having a dessert wine tasting of vintage Ports and PX Sherries. These wines may be sweet, but they’re really, really tasty. Go check them out!
Chambers Street Wines also has some interesting tastings lined up. On December 5th they’re pouring new arrivals from Jose Pastor selections, an importer who focuses on small production Spanish and Portuguese wines.
December 9th, they’re pouring Henriques & Henriques Madeira from 5:30-7:30pm. Madeira, a fortified wine from a small island in the Atlantic, is one of those unique, rare wines that can be hard to find—and expensive.
On Friday nights (December 4th and 11th) they’re going to be pouring their new Italian arrivals. Go drink some Brunello, Barberesco, and Nero d’Avola!
Back Label Wine Merchants has been hosting free tasting events on most Wednesdays and Thursdays throughout the month of December.
- December 2nd: Rhone Reds
- December 3rd NY State
- December 9th: Austria & Germany
- December 16th: Southern Italy
- December 17th: Party Wines (not quite sure what they mean but…)
- December 23rd: Holiday Wines
You can check out their calendar, which shows tastings and class dates, here.
Astor Wines & Spirits always has lots of free events
On December 2, they’re going to be pouring Brooklyn Gin. It’s a nice, more citrus-flavored gin that I highly recommend.
December 3, they’re pouring this month’s 12 top picks, which include everything from South African Chenin Blanc to German Rose, to Cotes de Rhone.
December 4th, they’re pouring a selection of wines from Greece, featuring local varieties like Xinomavro (a red) and Assyritiko (white).
This Brooklyn store also has a full calendar of events, including a Baijiu tasting on Friday, December 4. More info here
Thirst Wine Merchants Ft. Greene Brooklyn:
On December 17th, this store will be pouring small-batch spirits. More info here