Happy Hour Wine Tasting Featuring Ink Grade Winery with Special Guest Carlton McCoy MS

Tuesday, August 23, 2022 - 06:00 PM

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"When it comes to wine, I tell people to throw away the vintage charts and invest in a corkscrew. The best way to learn about wine is the drinking."  Alexis Lichine

And we are trying to do our part to educate or keep you drinking all summer long here at Wine Watch.  Tonight, we give you a chance to rub elbows with a really smart wine personality one of the 269 Master Sommeliers in the world today.  Join us as we welcome Carlton McCoy to South Florida for a rare Happy Hour on Tuesday night here at Wine Watch. 

Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the easiest wines in the world to sell but because they only make three wines at Ink Grade Winery we will be showcasing a few Champagnes from Legras et Haas this evening as well.

Toni will be making some tasty treats to accompany the tasting wines.  Although there is seating available all the wines will be served at the Bar this evening and this event is limited to 20 people.  The fee for this tasting is $95 + tax, for reservations call 954-523-9463 or e-mail andy@winewatch.com.


Carlton Mccoy, MS On Building A Premium Wine Brand!

Happy Hour Wine Tasting Featuring Ink Grade Winery
with Special Guest Carlton McCoy MS
Tuesday, August 23rd
Ink Grade — Ink Grade
"Our estate on Howell Mountain is no ordinary vineyard. Planted to nurture rather than disrupt the ecosystem that has thrived there for centuries, the Ink Grade is at once lush and rugged, idyllic and unforgiving. This dynamic balance is expressed in every bottle. The single-vineyard wines of Ink Grade Estate debut nearly 150 years after our land was acquired by Napa Valley legend Theron Ink."
Precariously clinging to the side of Howell Mountain, the Ink Grade Estate Vineyard claims a view unbeknownst to most in the Napa Valley. Amongst densely forested pines and sequoia stands, it lies in the north-east corner of the Howell Mountain AVA with a predominant view facing East. Terraced throughout due to the extreme slope, this mountainside vineyard grasps to volcanic “tufa” soils. Ink Grade Estate possesses a raw tension that renders fruit of immense intensity and depth.
Rugged terrain. Lush foliage. Abundant wildlife. This is no ordinary vineyard. This is the Ink Grade. Once owned by Napa Valley legend Theron Ink, our estate on Howell Mountain spans hundreds of wild acres—planted so as to nurture rather than disrupt the ecosystem that has thrived here for centuries. If ever there was a site which imparted a feeling of reverence, Ink Grade is such a place.

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Price: $70.50       Your Price: $62.04
This wine will be a pillar for California Sauvignon Blanc. The hallmark tropical components are elevated with the structure of minerality that comes from soils at Ink Grade.

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Price: $80.50       Your Price: $70.84
(92 Points) A blend that can change from vintage to vintage, the 2017 Andosol is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel. While the nose is marked by scents of redcurrants and gentle herbal shadings, the palate is full-bodied but taut and juicy, with silky but firm tannins and ample length.  Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

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Price: $205.50    Your Price: $180.84
(93 Points) The team at Ink Grade favors east and north-facing blocks for their own label, including the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon. Aged in a variety of different-sized oak vessels, the nose features scents of vanilla, cedar and cassis, with a gentle minty overtone. Full-bodied and firm but not lacking flesh or richness, this wine is dense and concentrated but lively and taut, with a long, dusty finish framed by fine-grained tannins.  Robert Parker's Wine Advocate


Three wines are not enough!! We need some Champagne!!  So, we are adding these three Grand Cru Champagnes to the line-up from Legras et Haas.

Legras & Haas – Demeine Estates


François Legras was born into a family with four centuries of grape growing experience, and has never left Chouilly, the place where he was born in 1937. Francois founded Legras et Haas in 1991, and the estate is now run by his three children, Rémi, Olivier and Jérôme Legras, who work together to craft genuine and balanced wines.

 Chouilly, the most northern Grand Cru village in the Côte des Blancs, is the birthplace of the Legras-Haas family and the foundation of their wines. The family cultivates 18 hectares of vines in these outstanding hills. With its 35 parcels spread out in almost all of the village areas, the family’s estate offers an extraordinary diversity of Chardonnay styles. Chouilly benefits from a primarily Eastern and Northern exposure with gently sloping hillsides and lowlands which impart richness and strength to the wines.

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Price: $71.25       Your Price: $62.70

The family has sought the finest batches of chardonnay from its Chouilly parcels and blended them together in order to reflect the incredible softness of the wines from this village. It reveals a lightly creamy first sip, rich mid palate and fresh and persistant finish, the signature of an outstanding Côte des Blancs. The aromas intensify in the glass to reveal notes of honeysuckle, citrus and pear underpinned by excellent energy and an aromatic profile always in motion.

NV Legras & Haas Intuition Brut Champagne Grand Cru Chouilly image

Price: $62.50       Your Price: $55.00            Quantity in Stock: 3
The cuvée Intuition is the quintessence of the Maison’s style and the result of a very personal approach. With this wine, the family seeks to reflect their vision of the ultimate champagne. The production process is a balancing act and one that requires lashings of creativity. The incredible diversity of the family estate is perfectly captured in this signature blend. The chardonnay imparts finesse, elegance, white stone fruits and ethereal citrus notes. The pinot meunier gives a smooth, exotic and reassuring mouthfeel. The pinot noir structures the wine and brings intensity to the composition.


Legras & Haas – Demeine Estates
Price: $75.00       Your Price: $66.00
This Non-Vintage Rosé Champagne is an example of fine craftsmanship. It reveals the finesse and elegance of perfectly preserved Pinot Noirs which form the core of this genuine blend, made exclusively from first press wines. The Red Les Riceys wines give overall structure to the wine whilst the Chardonnays from Chouilly and Vitry allow the Pinots to take center stage whilst imparting incomparable freshness.


Cheese and Charcuterie
Tomato Bisque with Cheesy Toast
Lamb Meatballs with Tzatziki
Short Rib Empanadas with Mole
Strawberry and Vanilla Creme Phyllo Cups
Tuna & Roasted Red Pepper Tartar with Lemon Aioli

The fee for this tasting is $95 + tax for reservations call 954-523-9463 or e-mail andy@winewatch.com.


A bit about our Host:

Growing up in southeast Washington, DC, Carlton McCoy’s upbringing was an unlikely springboard for his meteoric rise in the wine industry. Named a Master Sommelier in 2013 at just 28 years old, Carlton was one of the youngest people and the second African American to earn this prestigious title. 

At home, Carlton’s family preferred beer or whiskey and he had little exposure to wine. But food was another story: Carlton spent years at his grandmother’s side in the family’s catering business, learning kitchen basics, prepping vegetables and eventually cooking as well. “My grandma was an amazing cook,” he says, “and she was by far the leading influence behind my career in the restaurant business.” 

Motivated to build on his interest in the culinary arts, in high school Carlton enrolled in a class sponsored by the Careers Through Culinary Arts Program, or C-CAP. In 2002, he won a C-CAP citywide cooking contest and earned a full scholarship to the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y. At the CIA, something new stood out for him: “The wine class with Steven Kolpan was a revelation to me,” he explains. “It opened my eyes to a completely new world. I went to all the tutoring sessions to learn as much as I could about wine.” 

After graduation in 2006, Carlton honed his skills in revered institutions including Thomas Keller’s Per Se, Marcus Samuelsson’s Aquavit, Tom Colicchio’s Craft Steak in New York and Eric Zeibold’s CityZen at The Mandarin Oriental in Washington, DC. It was at CityZen that he got serious about wine and began studying for the Court of Master Sommeliers certifications, guided by Andy Myers MS. “He’s the person in this industry who changed my life,” Carlton states. “He was the first person to take me under his wing and tell me that I may have a future in this.” 

In 2011, Carlton joined the team at The Little Nell in Aspen, CO, inspired by the hotel’s award-winning wine program and reputation at a training ground for Master Sommeliers. After earning the MS title in 2013, he was promoted to Wine Director, overseeing a staff of 150 and The Little Nell’s acclaimed 20,000-bottle wine cellar.

 Carlton became President and CEO of Heitz Cellar in December 2018. To Carlton, Heitz Cellar represents a very particular style of Napa wines: ones that speak to an earlier era in California winemaking. His vision will highlight the winery’s consistent focus on remaining true to its elegant, pure style. “There has to be reverence when it comes to these older brands that create the greatest wines in the country,” he states. “It is fortunate that the Heitz family believed in that style and didn’t change it over the years. It makes the wines the unique experience that they are.”

As a Master Sommelier, Carlton is well versed in the fine wines of the world and is also keenly attuned to recognizing the icons closer to home. “As Americans, we have to look at wines like Heitz as national treasures,” he says. “We go all over the world looking for other wines when we have this incredible legacy right here at home. It’s a great honor to be a steward of such an iconic, historical brand.”

Adventurous and athletic, Carlton enjoys traveling the world in search of great wine and spirits and pursuing physically challenging outdoor activities including biking and running marathons. 

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