Tag Archives: Ian Barry

Weird Wonderful Wine with Ian Barry

Sparkling red on the line ! -Ian Barry

Living in the Finger Lakes, I have the advantage of being close to the action. I’ve been around enough crews of our local FLX winemakers to understand what drives so many of them to work the crazy hours, blast through times of backbreaking labor, and essentially do whatever they have to do. Passion, and maybe a little bit of good crazy, seem to be common threads.

Winemakers and tattoo artists are similar animals; they are artists working with a living palette, creatives, and once they have mastered the foundation rules, they might just knowingly and happily bend them. Sometimes, that’s when fun things happen, and I get involved whenever and wherever I can!

Barry Family Cellars is a family affair, with winemakers (and brothers) Ian and Brian establishing as one of the first micro-wineries in New York State, according to their BFC website. The focus is on minimally invasive, small batch wines, sometimes unfiltered and unrefined-which are turning out to be some of my favorite styles!

imageWhile creeping the interwebs today, I saw that Ian was in the process of bottling what he was calling ‘weird wine’-a SPARKLING, light cherry colored Cabernet Franc blend! I was running around Ithaca getting husband ready for a tattoo trip, and happily Ian and his assistant kiddo Declan were also in our neck of the woods! They were nice enough to swing by Hand of Fate with a bottle of the goods for me to try out. WHOOP!!

A Sparkling Cabernet blend is what happens when two winemaker brothers are sitting, tasting their goods…and one says he’s “not sure what to do with it” (Ian talking about this lighter, almost fruity Cab Franc they had) and in response, (Brian) “This might sound crazy, but….sparkling?” And there we have it!

imageimageSo, my preview bottle! Dry, tart, yet fruity for a Cabernet Franc-lighter, pretty cherry red color and of course, bubbles. Lots of cherry, pomegranate, strawberry-think jammy, but not weighty or heavy. I put a light chill on the bottle, and we had a very quaffable, different, fun and enjoyable style of red! Husband mused it almost reminded him of a dry hard cider from the long finish.

It would be a fantastic warm weather (think picnic) wine, easily pairing with pizza, appetizers, especially delicious with chocolate. Elegant but unassuming. When you want something with a little more ‘oomph’ and heft than a rosé, this would do the tric nicely!

I believe Ian said BFC will be releasing this bad boy in May, so keep checking their website link above for updates…small batch wineries are a jewel of the Finger Lakes, but you can’t sleep on it when new releases appear! Those in the know, know…and good wine in small batches sells fast.

Thank you for meeting up, Ian!  The wine, and the visit, were a pleasure as always…stop by the tattoo shop, anytime. 🙂


FLX Wines invade Brooklyn this Wednesday–Barry Wine Cellars at Vine Wine BKLN


ATTENTION NYC area BoozyLife readers! Have you been hearing all the hype about the upstate NY wine scene? We’re in the NY Times (and every other publication) for having some not to miss out on wines made in our neck of the woods, the glorious Finger Lakes region of New York State. We’re about five hours north of NYC, but it feels like a different world, full of waterfalls, vineyards, and nature. I understand that it’s an undertaking to leave the city and get up here….and sometimes, we come to you!


Vine Wine Brooklyn is having a tasting this Wednesday the 17th from (6-9pm) as a part of their Vine Wine’s Drink Local September Tasting Series. They’re located at 616 Lorimer St, Brooklyn. Ian Barry of Barry Wine Cellars will be pouring three of his wines – the Dry Riesling, Chardonnay, and Pinot Noir. I love the Dry Riesling, as well as the Rosé which is now sold out, which means I was asleep at the wheel and should have grabbed a CASE when I had the opportunity. Don’t miss out, and tell him the BoozyWife sent ya’!