Wine was once such an expensive commodity that the rich conspicuously spilled it on their golden capes instead of wasting it invisibly in their stomachs. Afford enough wine to braggadociously spill it with today's Groupon: for $15, you get $30 worth of wine at Vines to Cellar in Port Washington.
Vines to Cellar is a family-owned-and-operated winery that creates small-batch custom wine and allows patrons to taste the fermented fruits of their labor by the glass, bottle, or batch. The Tuscan Sunset red wine, flavored with a mixture of cherry and blackberry, is known for its dry character and good behavior around carpets ($11/bottle. Meanwhile, Smooth Sailing is an easy-drinking white wine that tinges the palate with notes of apple, pear, honey and elderflower ($11.50/bottle). Or skip to dessert wines such as the Frosty Jo, a Riesling-style ice wine that slowly unveils hints of honey, peach, sweet citrus, marmalade, and its fear of being locked in barrels ($16/bottle). Customers are free to sip from any vintage before making a purchase.
Alternately, aspiring wine-makers can apply the value of today’s Groupon toward Vine to Cellar’s U-VIN program to oversee the creation of 30 bottles' worth of their own wine without staining the bathtub ($165.95–$280). Once fermentation is complete, participants get to outfit their libations with a bottle, cork, custom label, and their favorite nutrition fact.
Vines to Cellar
With a background brewing beer, Jim Wirsching-Neuser was immediately interested when his wife suggested that they create a wine with which to toast at their wedding in 2001. More than a decade later, the two have refined their winemaking processes and recipes to create an impressive selection of varietals using juices from wine grapes produced around the globe. Inside their tasting room, guests sample pours from each of the house-made wines, a selection which may vary according to the season and the sommelier’s ability to juggle. The elixirs may include a faintly tart blueberry pinot noir, dry Tuscan chianti, and Johannesburg riesling, which bursts with fruity notes before breaking through into a smooth dryness.