Atmosphere is a key ingredient for enjoying East End libations. And, once guests’ glasses are emptied, it’s important for stocked wine stores to provided enough bottles for summer evenings to continue elsewhere deep into the night. Dan’s Best of the Best has assembled the best tasting room and stores for visitors interested in bottles to stay and bottles to go.
Southold’s Sparkling Pointe (39750 Middle Road, 631-765-0200) winery is home to the platinum tasting room with its sleek, elegant and airy design. The high ceilings and large windows allow for sun-drenched sips while picnic tables shaded by large, white umbrellas decorate the outside sitting area where guests can also lounge.
Another spacious tasting room on the North Fork is Peconic’s Raphael Vineyard and Winery (39390 New York 25, 631-765-1100). The gold tasting room’s wood decor mixed with Spanish tile is reminiscent of a Tuscan villa. The outdoor patio is also a perfect spot for toasting with Dan’s Best of the Best Gold Cabernet. Don’t forget to stop at the platinum tasting room store to pick up a bottle on your way out!
Other North Fork tasting rooms are more quaint with laid-back vibes. McCall Wines’ (22600 New York 25, 631-765-0200) silver tasting room is an old potato barn that was previously a horse stable. Picnic tables and rustic hanging pieces provide for an industrial feel that remains cozy and intimate. Their silver tasting room store is also a Dan’s Papers voter-favorite and home to McCall’s silver award-winning Merlot.
Farther up island, the bronze tasting room at Baiting Hollow Farm & Vineyard (2114 Sound Avenue, 631-369-0100) is the most comfortable spot to share a bottle of wine. The Calverton home is warm and inviting. At the outdoor sitting area, you might even forget that you’re not in your own back yard. Baiting Hollow Farm & Vineyard was also voted one of the top tasting room stores, winning a gold award from Dan’s Best of the Best while Vineyard 48 (18910 Middle Road, 631-734-5200) in Cutchogue rounded out the top tasting room stores with a bronze award.