Instead of attending a winery I decided to go to All Points West Distillery. The location is 73 Tichenor St, Newark, NJ. All Points West distillery is a very nice place to visit whether, it’s to attend one of their tours or enjoy some food in their quite small or rather petite restaurant, where they also host tastings. The tasting room is quite small as well, but it’s completely overlooked by the outstanding décor. Once everyone that was attending the tour came to the tasting room, we were taken to their factory where they have barrels of their whiskeys and where the distillery machines and fermenting barrels are located. First we were taken to their Boozeum room where our tour guide Lacey gave us all a lesson on how whiskey was started and the history behind All Points West Distillery. Next, we were taken into the production room where you can see their distill machines and huge barrels where they hold the fermenting process. First, the employees were working with one boiler but now they are going to start using their new boiler to fill up larger barrels to ferment the whiskey. During the tour, Lacey mentioned their goals and one of them was finally releasing their 750 milliliter bottle because right now at the moment they are just selling pint and half pint size bottles. The two main ingredients that they use in their whiskey distillery is 80% corn and 20% molten barley. All their corn and other ingredients that they use for infusions come from a farm called Lake Free Organic where 75% of their ingredients come from. And since the distillery has tons of land, they age all their whiskey in that facility. After we was shown and explained the process of how the whiskeys are made in the distillery factory, we were taken back into their shop where we was given to try 5 kinds of whiskeys that are produced by them. However by law for one single person they are allowed to be offered 4 shots of whiskeys in the tour that we was given. For the four shots of whiskey that I tasted where Moonshine, Straight bourbon, Peated bourbon, and Grapefruit with Jalapeno. The Moonshine I kinda enjoyed because it wasn’t way to strong and it didn’t leave me a after taste nor my throat burning. The second one, the straight bourbon wasn’t bad but it left my throat burning for a good while then I went on to tasting the Peated bourbon and I kinda enjoyed that one more than the other two that I had just had. Finally it was time to taste the last one which was the grapefruit with jalapeno whiskey which caught my attention because it was a weird combination that I heard and was curious to find out how it would taste. Unfortunately I did not enjoy it at all and the aftertaste that it left was the worst part. Not only was I the only one that didn’t enjoy it but I spoke to other people who were part of the tour and they told me as well that they didn’t enjoy that one as well and they was getting that after taste a lot too. Overall I really enjoyed my visit to All Points West distillery from learning the history on whiskey’s, how All Points came to be. The experience was grand I was finally getting to taste some of the whiskey’s that they produce. It’s a tour that I would for sure recommend to friends and family to go visit for they can as well learn about the history of whiskey’s.
When approaching the retail beverage shop analysis, I decided to stay within the neighborhood and access a local winery, Vintage Harlem (Wine Spirits). Located on 2235 Frederick Douglass Blvd, New York, NY 10027, Vintage Harlem provides over hundreds of different wines from your lowest selling item all the way to the vintage collection that usually prices at almost two-thousand dollars’ retail. The store itself, has a rustic look with brick walls and barrique type (wood) shelves. The inside is beautiful and feels as though you are walking into the storing or fermenting section of an actual winery. They have over 6 sections of regions that provide so many varieties of grape and shelved from least expensive to most expensive. Some of the regions inside were labeled France, Argentina, Chile, Spain, California of course and many more. Upon entering, I was greeted by the employee Marissa. I explained to her that I was here on an assignment mission and that I would need some of her expertise to answer a few questions. One of my first initial questions I had asked was “Where does the wine come from? Is it made here? She quickly responded and told me that distributors come to the wine store and they buy the quantity they need, specifics and region based items. Marissa rally knew her wine knowledge, solely, because she works there, is a wine consumer herself and studies wine. I asked her if she would be interested in becoming a sommelier and she chuckled and answered that she thought about doing it. However, her history knowledge would need to need to increase a tad more. I was told I could take photos in the winery and that I did. Absolute beauty of the setup with all the wines. The only downfall of the winery is that they didn’t necessarily have a “shelf talker” in the sections and that they keep their private back area open next to other regions and I witnessed the GM taking a nice snooze. It was funny but also very unprofessional, especially, if the stores’ traffic was busy and on demand. Vintage Harlem keeps their most expensive wines in this miniature black wine fridge with a lock and key and is opened when specifically asked. I couldn’t take a picture of the fridge cabinet, but I was able to see their 2013 Chateau multi red grape blend that was a grand total of one-thousand, five-hundred dollars. I knew wines ran high in price but I was so intrigued to try. Although, I didn’t, Vintage Harlem does in fact, allow wine tasting before purchase. And that is a huge part in wine selling because more than likely you’re inclined to purchase a wine or two that you tasted because you know for a fact that you like it! Vintage Harlem was absolute awesome experience and since it’s located in my neighborhood… I told Marissa that she’ll be seeing more of me for sure.