City Pulse

By Stef Schwalb


As we’ve said before, the best way to learn about wine is to taste, taste, taste. One of the best places to do that? Tasting events. And the French Institute Alliance Franchaise (FIAF) in partnership with AOC Fine Wines is happy to assist us in this endeavor. As part of their “Wine Tour de France,” a series of sessions will be held this spring led by sommeliers from some of Manhattan’s finest restaurants. Among the events we are very excited about is the “Buyers & Cellars: Starting Your Collection,” on Monday April 9th at FIAF’s Le Skyroom.

Photo courtesy of ©Junenoire Mitchell

This upcoming event will be led by Hristo Zisovski, an advanced sommelier who has been working with Ai Fiori, the Altamarea Group’s new restaurant at the Setai Hotel. Hristo gained notoriety for his extensive wine selection, which has helped the restaurant garner a three-star rating by The New York Times as well as a Wine Spectator’s Award 2011 for the wine list. He is also a member of the Altamarea Group Beverage Committee that oversees all beverage operations company-wide.

Topics to be addressed in the tasting include collecting wine for both pleasure and as an investment; identifying investment-grade wines; finding and purchasing the most profitable vintages; storing and preserving wines; creating a wine collection that reflects one’s personal tastes and values; and tips for every level of collector from first-timer to those who have years of experience. The wine selection will showcase three pairs of wines with a focus on learning complexity and length, New World vs. Old, and young wine vs. aged (which also will highlight the benefits of aging wine).

Now that so many great selections have become more affordable, anyone with a passion for wine can start their own collection and this event is a great way to embark on that tantalizing journey. For more information about this event, others in the series, ticket prices and reservations, head to

Le Skyroom
22 East 60th Street
(Between Park & Madison Avenues)

Originally published April 2012

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