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Cork Wines & Spirits: Know Before You BYOB

Cork Wines & Spirits cares about wine. Much more than just a store, Cork is a tastemaker that endeavors to educate its clientele about the many varieties of wine and the nuances in their flavor. Co-founder Mike Garcia states, “At Cork, our philosophy is simple: one on one customer service. We want to take it back to a time when executives were known as shopkeepers. To us everyone walking in the door is a relationship waiting to happen.” Having personally tasted and curated every single wine selection they have to offer, Cork’s staff has 45 years of combined knowledge to help you make an educated choice and develop your palate.

Jay Emminger, Cork’s Consulting Wine Director composes a weekly newsletter about wine and wine pairings, and holds tastings at Cork every Friday from 6-8 p.m. and Saturday from 2-5 p.m. As a classically trained chef with extensive experience in the food industry, Emminger really knows his stuff. On the topic of Thai food, he explained that when “you have a wine that’s high in acidity, and you have food that’s hot, yet not spicy, the acid will exacerbate the sebaceous oils in a hot food and intensify it and you don’t want to do that.” Information like that can absolutely save a meal.

With so many BYOB restaurants such as Anthony David’s, San Giuseppe, and Yeung II in close proximity to the store, it would be in your best interest to stop in and buy a bottle from Cork before heading out to eat. Let them know where you plan on eating or what dish you’ve got your eye on and chances are good that Cork’s staff will steer you right in choosing the perfect wine for your meal. The right wine not only works with the meal, it actively enhances it, as Emminger says, “we try to be as helpful to the customers as possible so that their entire experience allows them to have a wine that either complements or contrasts their food, and if we’re really lucky, you get wine with food that complements and contrasts, creating the holy grail of flavors which is umami.”

Cork Wines & Spirits is located at 1450 Washington Street in Hoboken.