jump to navigation

Your Wine Picnic Place February 23, 2014

Posted by Alex Sawit in Happenings at the Shop.

By Alex Sawit

February 23, 2014




It gives me great satisfaction to know that Cyrano Wine Shop possesses something enviable – something that the wine snob bars in our city would love to replicate but have never succeeded in copying.

Well, okay, none has actually tried yet. My point is, those poser-hangouts can spend all the money they want trying to copy our favorite picnic area and they still won’t get it right.

Let them eat three words: location, location, location.

“This is really nice,” an American visitor exclaimed upon seeing our one-of-a-kind attraction last week. “I’ve been living here for years and this is the first time I’ve found a streetside picnic setup in the city.”

For those who have never been to Cyrano, our visitor was referring to that small patch of grass just outside our front doors – a converted plant box at the top of our entrance steps, perched above street level. For years, access to this spot has been the exclusive privilege of Cyrano friends who know how to take their shoes off, step on a blanket laid on grass, and enjoy a proper wine picnic under a clear night sky.

I thanked our guest for his compliments (and later, for the samples of excellent artisanal ice cream that he brought to the shop for our evaluation). I told him that our picnic setup appears at the start of every cold season, when the weather is perfect for unguarded outdoor relaxation, and that even during the summer months Cyrano friends still ask for the picnic blanket. It finally stops, I said, only with the arrival of the rainy season.

“But the weather this new year has been great,” I added. “So folks around here want to picnic as much as they can while the cool nights last.”



On reflection, I’m fortunate that years ago I was able to find this location of ours, with its underutilized plant box that turned out to be such a creative space for our wine shop. When I found it, I immediately knew that this was the sweet spot in an ideal neighborhood for a wine bar.

It’s the vibe. For years, I’ve been telling folks that our street has an energy about it in the way people like walking up and down from one establishment to the next. My long-running narrative has been that this is the only place in the metropolis that comes close to feeling like I’m walking in some street in Manhattan. In fact, listen to what I overheard the other week from another group of Americans when they exited Cyrano as I was setting up our picnic area for that evening.

“(blah-blah-blah)…You know, I was walking down the street,” one guy said to his buddy as they walked by. “It’s a kind of New York vibe…”

Ah, yeah…location, location, location.

Go ahead and feel smug about it, Cyrano friends. You have my permission. Because truthfully, you own wine picnics in this city.





1. Aids - February 26, 2014

Love that little picnic patch man. Hehe.

2. dian yu - February 27, 2014

Love it! Can’t wait to visit again!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: