Fred Tregaskis is the Host at Wine-Jazz, The perfect pairing, in Hartford, Connecticut
He is the owner of New England Wine Cellars, and writes about wine for Berkshire Home Style. He is the host on WHDD/NPR radio of Wine-Jazz, The perfect pairing. He recently interviewed Dominique about Hudson-Chatham Empire 2010.
He's something first about Fred....
"It might seem a stretch to jump from the visual arts to writing about wine, but his interest in wine is longstanding," reported the Litchfield County Times. "He explained that he was raised in New York state, where “I went to college on an art scholarship. But I needed more money, so I went to work in a vineyard for one of the early vintners in the Hudson River Valley. It was wine-making 101, and I remember sitting on a tractor on a hillside at 7 o’clock one morning, watching the sun come up over a field of seyval vines. [They] gave me a little sip of wine to get my heart into the project. I thought, ‘I like this farming.’”
"As a young artist, he made ends meet by moonlighting as a bartender, where he learned more about wines. “I was given a lot of wines to taste,” he related, “and I knew a lot of sommeliers in New York. So when I tried out for the job as a taster and writer for the magazine, I described the taste of one wine as ‘a ’57 Chevy patching out at a stop light.’ They loved it because they wanted descriptions of wines that people would relate to, not the kind of thing you usually see in wine terminology. I got to write the silliest things, but I loved it.”
He rode the crest of the rising popularity for wine in the 1990s. “Wine was hugely popular,” he recalled. “Australian wines were coming on the stage and the Chilean stuff was happening. The South African embargo had been lifted. The wine world was exploding and it was great to ride that wave.”
It was shortly after he departed from the wine magazine that, while talking to a sommelier friend, he was asked to recommend someone who could design and build a 28,000-bottle wine cellar for the Lespinasse Restaurant at the St. Regis Hotel in New York City. “I grew up working with my hands, so I decided I could do it,” he said. “I did a drawing and put in a bid and got the job.”
While interviewing co-owner Dominique DeVito, Fred tasted the Hudson-Chatham Empire 2010 on air. Empire is the first New York state super-blend, combining 33% Merlot from the North Fork, 33% Cab Franc from the Finger Lakes, and 33% Baco Noir from the Hudson Valley. The wines are made separately, then combined, and aged in small separate lots of French oak, American oak, and stainless steel. And then the wines, after a total of 24 months are blended and bottle aged for six months. This produces a Bordeaux-styled wine with incredible complexity and tremendous, long lasting flavors that can be drunk now or aged for 5-7 years.
LISTEN TO FRED'S INTERVIEW WITH DOMINIQUE AND HIS COMMENTS!!!