The Inside Story from Italian Wine Merchants

Trading in Union Square for Aspen, Colorado

Posted on | June 24, 2015 | Written by Emery Long | No Comments

Aspen Food and Wine 1Hopping from bustling Union Square in New York City to Aspen, Colorado, to join the IWM Aspen team during the 2015 Aspen Food & Wine Classic was quite the experience. Despite its remote location, Aspen is far from the sleepy one-horse ski-town I expected—especially during the Aspen Food & Wine Classic held every June. When I joined the IWM team last November, I’d read about our outpost in Aspen, and after receiving an offer to join the IWM Aspen team, I jumped at the opportunity to trade Gramercy Park for Aspen, Colorado.

Italian Wine Merchants Aspen’s store is located directly at the Little Nell, at the base of the Gondola at Aspen’s main mountain, 7,908 feet above sea level. The wines on display sit behind a glass door in a temperature-controlled cellar environment to shield them from the dry climate and high altitude. The shop has a select inventory; however, it’s just as exciting as New York’s, boasting iconic Italian wines from Gaja, Biondi-Santi, Tenuta San Guido Sassicaia, Giuseppe Quintarelli, and Cupano to name a few producers. The shelves at IWM Aspen also feature wines from around the world, including Burgundy, Bordeaux, Champagne, Rioja, Riberia del Duero, and Patagonia’s Rio Negro. Just as the Union Square location does, so IWM Aspen also hosts events and private tastings in the shop. The Aspen store is essentially its own vintage tasting room with seating for eight, surrounded by the glassed-in cellar.

Aspen Food and Wine 2This past weekend, I had the opportunity meet and greet the Aspenites at the Food & Wine classic, pouring wines at our booth, and while these wines were nice, the wines we poured in the store were incredible: 1997 Gaja Rennina, 2000 Poggio di Sotto Brunello di Montalcino, 2006 Aldo Conterno Granbussia, 2003 Rinaldi Barolo, 1973 Mastroberardino Taurasi, and a 1998 Sassicaia. We had a number of events, and I heard from many of our patrons, we were pouring the best wine in Aspen, which puts us in the running for the best wine pouring in the country.

Drop by if you find yourself in Aspen, and I’ll be glad to make your acquaintance, as well as help you find an ideal bottle of wine!

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