The Tasting Panel magazine

November 2013

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Page 121 of 152

NEW YORK: Where Legends Live Having won Double Gold with both his Joven and Añejo mezcals, Mestizo Mezcal founder Arturo Palencia was pleased to pour his award-winning spirits in person. "We're really proud and honored, and it is so important for us to be here in person, especially since we're looking for distribution in New York," explains Palencia, who also said he hoped potential distributors would see the awards as a badge of merit for the brand. Representing a popular spirit at the tasting was Gina Unverferth, Master of Whiskey for Diageo, whose Bulleit 95 Rye not only won a Double Gold, but has become an industry darling since its release. "A lot of bartenders really brought this product to life," said Unverferth. "It's only natural that a Double Gold would be awarded to a product of this caliber." Having the opportunity to meet with an Australian winemaker face-to-face is one of the perks of checking out the Double Gold Medal tours. While buyers Down Under met with Matt Fowles at Savour Australia (see page 92), NYC got to taste with the producer face-to-face at SD26. "It's a huge honor to have had my Stone Dwellers 2009 Shiraz honored with Double Gold," comments Fowles. "Whenever you can appeal to a group of people unanimously, it feels great, and getting to see people in person from all walks of life, from distributors, to hospitality operators, it's a really nice thing." PHOTO: DOUG YOUNG While brands were happy to pour their products for the attending trade, local buyers were also on the lookout for new products to bring in to their accounts. Joseph Scalzo, Manager of Training and Beverage Operations for BR Guest Hospitality, explained that he loved having the chance to taste new and interesting products. "Tastings like these offer a great opportunity to evaluate certain products and see where they fit within our various concepts," says Scalzo, who oversees 20 different properties from Atalntic City to Las Vegas. "It is a great opportunity to taste and learn." TP1113_109-156.indd 121 As our host for the New York City Tour Stop, SD26, a chic midtown Italian eatery, was the perfect backdrop to serve legendary brands alongside the legends-inthe-making. "This is a continuation of San Domenico restaurant," says owner Tony May, referring to the NYC classic with 20 years of history under its belt that's been revamped at a second location that personifies modern Italian cuisine at its finest. "We are pleased to have the Double Gold medal winners here, to share the beautiful wines and spirits with the trade." november 2013  /  the tasting panel  /  121 10/24/13 9:16 AM

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