Orange Wine Guide to Drink Natural Wine Bars New York

Grandlife guide

Orange Wine: Here's What you Need to Know

back to list

Two wine connoisseurs share their insights. 

It’s been a bit of a slow burn but over the past decade, orange wine has gone from esoteric and obscure to a favorite pour among industry insiders and, in effect, become increasingly prevalent on wine lists around the city. For the uninitiated, orange wine, sometimes referred to as skin-contact wine, is made by fermenting and aging the juice of white grapes with their skins and seeds in a large clay vessel called a “qvevri.” By comparison, white wine is made from white grapes after removing the skin and seeds. With that said, let’s dive a little deeper into how, when, and where you should be sipping this orange-hued variety created from a centuries-old technique. Here, two wine connoisseurs—Byron Bates, co-founder at Goatboy Selections, and Ray Pirkle, co-owner of Rivertown Lodge—share their insights. 

What are your go-to NY spots for a glass of orange wine, and what makes each spot special?

Byron Bates: Any good wine bar or resto with a sommelier worth their salt will carry a few selections of orange (macerated white wines). Ten Bells is a casual wine bar on the LES with great bar food and a strong selection by the glass; Frenchette in TriBeCa for the best fine French food in NY and a deep list of white wine with skin contact; Romans in Fort Greene is a top-notch neighborhood Italian and always pours an orange. 

Ray Pirkle: Four Horsemen; James Murphy also just opened a new bar called Daymoves, which will be called Nightmoves at night. Also, Diner and Marlow & Sons, Ten Bells, Ops, Racines, Wildair, Chez Ma Tante, Frenchette. 

Can you share your tips on how to pick a great bottle of orange wine?  

BB: Pick a good restaurant or wine bar and ask the sommelier or waiter. Look for wines from Friuli, Austria, and the Republic of Georgia. Pinot Gris does particularly well with some skin contact. 

RP: To pick the best ones, you look for the best importers. Their labels are on the back of the bottles—it’s like trusting an indie record label. Goatboy, Dressner, Jenny & François, and Zev Rovine.

What foods do you recommend pairing with orange wine?   

BB: Anything you’d drink with a light red: duck, brisket, skate… a little fat or sweetness in the dish makes for a perfect pairing. 

RP: Obviously, it would depend on the actual wine but as a general rule, orange wines tend to be tannic, nutty and full of flavor. They can hold up to oily fish, red meats, charcuterie, and strong cheeses. 

WORDS Edwina Hagon 

 

You May Also Like

Paige Powell Andy Warhol Basquiet Bill Cunningham John Lennon Bob Gruen Ken Schles New York 80s Allan Tannenbaum Walt Cassidy

New York-Centric Coffee Table Books

art & design
stories
From revelrous art world celebrities to late-night voyeurism: The photo books that pay homage to our immensely photographic city.
SoHo New York itinerary soho diner king ruby's cafe brunch al fresco roxy hotel clic gallery saturdays surf nyc the webster

Weekends in SoHo

art & design
bars & nightlife
food & drink
stories
Explore the neighborhood anew with this curated guide.
Catskills Guide Upstate New York Phoenicia Diner

Top Picks for a Fall Getaway

travel
stories
It’s time to start planning your fall getaway, and we’re here to help.
St Mazie, Bemelmans Bar, new york bars, cocktails, Lucien, Dante, Grand Banks

Local Go-Tos with Maxwell Britten, Tali Lennox, Zackery Michael & Others

bars & nightlife
stories
We asked friends of GrandLife to share their neighborhood spot for drinks and what they order when they go. Here’s what they told us…
MoMa, the Whitney, Brooklyn Museum, The Met, The Metropolitan Museum, Fotografiska

Museums Reopen: Here's What to Expect

art & design
stories
A collab with David Byrne at the Brooklyn Museum, the Donald Judd retrospective at MoMA, and more to explore at New York's landmark museums this fall.
Summer Day Trips to Ignite your Senses

Summer Day Trips to Ignite your Senses

art & design
bars & nightlife
travel
stories
We round up the best day trips to set your senses alight and lull you into that holiday state of mind without venturing too far from the city.
McNally Jackson Summer Reading List New York Books

McNally Jackson’s John Francisconi shares his top 5 summer reads

art & design
reading
stories
For your reading pleasure. 
New York Stores bookstore coming soon abc home adam green brianna lance tali lennox academy records maryam nassir zadeh no.6 store shopping the realreal sincerely tommy strand bookstore mast di palo's

Local Go-Tos With Adam Green, Brianna Lance, Nikki Kynard & Others

art & design
now open
shopping
stories
We asked friends of GrandLife to share their favorite NYC stores and what they love about them. Here’s what they told us…
Best Rate Promise
Soho Grand Hotel

310 West Broadway
New York, NY 10013

(212) 965-3000
The Roxy Hotel Tribeca

2 6th Avenue
New York, NY 10013

212.519.6600