Grand Wine & Liquor founded in 1933 is a family owned retail store; it is located at 30-05 31st St, Astoria, NY 11102 and is a large neighborhood store which offers a variety of wines as well as a full selection of spirits.
On arriving at this shop after getting a little lost I met the Store Manager Jamie Anulawicz who had given me an appointment on receiving my email. She was very informative and went the extra mile to make sure she answered all my questions. She has been in the wine business for 6 years and still enjoys every moment of it, she did a course called WSET course at the International Wine Center to advance her knowledge of Wines.
I asked her many questions like, what wine was most popular now? She mentioned that Mionetto Proseco was the most popular wine that was selling, on asking her the reason why it was so popular she mentioned that it was a big brand with national advertising. She also mentioned that Bordeaux’s were also in demand and a hot selling wine among most people and they were willing to spend anywhere from $20 to $50 on a bottle. Their top selling wine was Coppiere Pinot Grigio that cost $8.99 a bottle and was light –bodied and refreshing; it would pair well with delicate white fish.
She showed me around the store which was I think well organized with wines from various countries like Spain& Portugal, Germany & Austria, Italy, South Africa, Australia & New Zealand, France, Argentina, Chile and American regions like California, Washington, and Napa Valley. There are racks of sparkling, red and white wines on display. They have a great selection of wines which are presented with prices along with tasking notes and best food pairing. They store wines which are not on the main floor in the basement and attic which are temperature controlled to 55 degree F. Red & White wines are stored together since they sell quickly. There is a section for kosher wines Dry Red Wine, Dry White Wine, Dry Rosé wine bottled by Greek wine cellars D Kourtakis S.A. Near the entrance of the store they have a table displayed with Rosé from different regions and ranging from different prices which they call “Rosé Avenue Station”.
Since most of their customers are regulars they introduce new wines to them. They cater to their customer needs and also have wines from Greece, Croatia, Georgia, and Romania it’s like almost impossible to not find what you’re looking for. The store carries one 750ml bottle of their most expensive wine from France Leroy LesBoudoi Nuhs St Georges 2005 which cost only $1300. To end the evening I embraced my inner oenophile and purchased a bottle of Rose.
- Shelf Talker
Sub-Region: Brunello di Montalcino
Grape Varietal: Sangiovese
Type: Still wine
Brunello di Montalcino is a wine made with 100% Sangiovese with Italy’s highest DOCG classification. This is the Sangiovese that most wine critics cite to be the best in all of Italy. – Wine Folly
- Red Wine from Spain
Grape Varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon,Mourvedre
Type: Still wine
Intense and dark cherry red color with purple edges. High layer. Clean and bright. Dense tear that lightly dyes the glass. On the nose it is powerful, very intensefresh. Initially, the elegant notes of the Crianza appear, toasted and balsamic. When opened, exploits the black fruit touch of very ripe red fruit, almost jam, at some point liquorice with spicycreamy lactic. Fine floral tobacco touches. In the mouth it is powerful, well- structured, fresh and very sweet. Surrounding entry with a smooth and rich taste.
Wine Maker notes
Selected vintage from low production vines of more than 40 years old, located at 900m altitude. It is hardly harvested in 15 kg boxes at its optimum ripening point, going through the selection table before the vinification. We conduct separate vinification processes for each variety. The malolactic fermentation is done in French and American oak barrel. Once the process is completed, the wine settles for 18 months in those barrels.
- Sparkling Wine from Spain.
Grape Varietal: Prosecco
Light-bodied, with crisp acidity and flavors of green pear, melon, fleur de sel and lemon zest. Clean and fresh, with a modest, lightly floral finish. – Wine Spectator
- Red Wine from Plenkovic Hvar Croatia
Region: The Coastal Region
Sub-Region: Dalmatian Background
Grape Varietal: Non-Varietal Red Blend
Type: Still wine
High-quality dry wine Plavac Mali from the localities of Sv.Nedjelja. This wine aged in large wooden barrels (volume 40, 96 and 130 hl) and stainless steel a year and after filling in the bottles another 4 months. Dark red in color and has a rich structure and a long persistence. The wine is dark ruby in color, with a rich and layered, pleasant, and deep aroma that has undertones of Dalmatian herbs, spices, minerality, saltiness and dark fruit. The wine is warm and comforting on the nose, which is typical of Zlatan’s wines and has given them a specific identity and cult-following in Croatia and Europe. It is immensely structured and balanced and possesses a refined, complex, and an exceptional presence on the palate that is followed by a long and persistent finish. It is said that Zlatan’s wines are traditional drink of fishermen, farmers and the inevitable detail of the best restaurant tables. – Wine & More
Very interesting post! I didn’t know Croatia made wine, will have to give it a try someday. I like how you included the tasting notes for each wine.
Hi Sarah, i was also surprised to know about Croatia making wine, and you should try it. Thank you.
I enjoyed reading your experience visiting this wine shops. I am really shocked about Croatia making wine. I would love to give this wine a taste. I also liked that you included the sub-regions
Hi Rukiya, thank you for reading my busy experience. I was also surprised to know that Croatia made wine. The store manager recommended the red wine so I would suggest you to try it when you are purchasing the wine.
It’s interesting to know that Croatia made wine. Also the Rose that you bought, where was it from and what was its grape variety?
Hello Tamara the Rose wine I purchased was the Zlatan Rose, it’s from Hvar, Croatia and the wine is made from the grapes of Plavac Mali, I was told it is ripe and fruity with cherry and raspberry notes which sounded perfect for my mum.
I really like the way that you doing your Shelf Talker. That you give out the basic information about different wines. Also, the tasting note really helps to have a better understanding of the wine.
Your Welcome Jin, I am glad the information I provided is of help to you.
I went to the same retail store you went too. I actually didn’t have time to email the manager to meet with them. Did you enjoy the wine you bought?
Hi Elisabeth, I still have not tried the wine yet but when i do will let you know if it was good as recommended.
I appreciate your tasting notes and the excitement you created among your classmates. So much about wine includes a nose in a book but it also requires the need to communicate in diverse ways. Well done.
After you finish the advanced wine classes you too can take the WSET entry exam!