Patrick Cappiello, Creator of Forty Ounce Wines
What’s your wine backstoré? I started in the restaurant business when I was fifteen, and did just about every job the industry had to offer. Wine didn’t come until I was a working as a waiter just after I finished college. The restaurant I was working in had a great wine list. I very quickly noticed that the waiters who new about wine were selling a lot more, and as result were making way more money than me. This got my attention and I started studying and tasting like crazy. I very quickly fell in love with wine and decided to do whatever it took to make it my profession. This lead me to Tribeca Grill where I was lucky enough to encounter David Gordon who became my mentor, and he helped me launch into the wine world.
Tell us all about Forty Ounce Wines: On a recent trip to France’s Loire Valley with my business partner Chris Desor, we visited our friend Julien Braud — a winemaker in Muscadet, an area near the western end of the Valley. We were tasting through his families wines, and noticed in the cellar a bottle that was strikingly similar in shape to the 40 oz malt liquor bottles I drank in my youth — when I spent most of my time on a skateboard. When we asked Julien about the 1 liter bottle, he told to us it was for the grape juice he bottles and sells at the local market. We asked if he would be willing to put wine in that bottle he said yes but was curious what our fascination was with the bottle. We gave Julien the history of 40 oz. bottles, and then explained how we saw this as an opportunity to help remove some of the pretense traditionally associated with wine. It’s been a personal quest of mine to connect with young people and help them get excited about wine. This format seemed like a great way to make this happen, and the wines that Julien makes were a perfect fit. He is working with Organic farming methods and the wines from the region have always represented some of the best values in the world.
Upon returning to the States, I started working closely with Carolyn Frisch, a graphic designer, who helped create the label that we now use on the bottle. It was inspired by a mix of traditional Muscadet labels, and those old school malt bottles. As a result, in spring of 2016, the Muscadet was released and the feedback was wildly positive on both the packaging and quality of the wine. So much so that we sold out of the wine very quickly, which lead us to the idea of producing a 40 oz Rosé as well as the Muscadet in the next vintage.
Did you have any idea the Rosé would become such a hit? I had no idea. I mean we had great feedback with the Muscadet and I really felt the format would be perfect for Rosé, but the reaction was way more than we were prepared for…
Where’s your favorite place to stop and drink the rosé? Restaurant Marc Forgione. They are one of the few places that pour it by the glass. The Wine Director, Matt Conway, was super supportive from the minute the Muscadet was released so he was all over the Rosé before the explosion. They have an awesome patio in front of the restaurant which is one of my favorite places to hang out on a warm day.
Who would you most like to have a glass of your rosé with? I guess Van Gough… He liked to drink and the south of France! Also he was a bad ass artist.
When you aren’t drinking rosé, what’s your go-to summer drink? Ice Cold Beer. Modelo usually.
What are you most looking forward to this summer? Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. I love Summer Blockbusters!!
Cork or screwcap? Screwcap, they are built for speed.