This week, Providence Eats went to Newport Vineyards in Middletown for their Vine to Table event featuring Rhode Island foodie influencers. It included a private tour through the winery with owner Paul Nunes, a wine tasting with Winemaker George Chelf, and a dinner prepared by Chef Andy Teixeira. Here are some things we learned:
1. The inside of Newport Vineyards is as beautiful as the outside.
Imagine an upscale barn where you feel close to nature and New England’s historic roots. Picture a hybrid of rustic and industrial architecture and design using wood from actual barn wood from around the area. Think high ceilings, an open landscape, big barrels – now enhance whatever you just dreamed up times ten! It is no wonder why so many people are choosing to get married here – its romantic, warm, homey, and authentic. I can honestly say I haven’t been to a venue like it before.
2. The food is unreal.
During our time at Newport Vineyards, we expected to drink delicious wine. However, we were not expecting how good the food was truly going to be – it blew us away. Before I make your tastebuds water, let me first explain the set up of Brix, the on-site restaurant. Its ambiance continues that of the tasting room with big barrel booths, a beautiful fireplace, and expansive views of the vineyard and the entire winemaking operation through two walls of windows that drape the room.
Chef Andy uses all locally-sourced ingredients that are in season, and he means business! If it’s not tomato season, you’re getting “no-mato” sauce on your pasta – but not to worry, we heard it’s fantastic. We got to dine over five-courses designed by Chef Andy, and we were just amazed. Below is what we enjoyed:
And just when I thought dinner couldn’t get any better, out came dessert. This food was amazing. The flavors were bursting with every bite. I literally couldn’t wait for each course to come out. Each plate was paired with a wine, but I know you’re probably aware of how amazing Newport Vineyards wine is.
And Brix isn’t the only place to dine well at the vineyard. The Vineyard Cafe is low-key, casual, and perfect to grab a sandwich on the go or to relax with a glass of wine or craft beer. But let’s talk about their CHEESE BOARDS *heart eyes*.
Choose 3 cheese for $13, or 5 for $19 – paired with seasonal fruits, chef’s spiced nuts and house-made jams. Is there anything better than a beautiful setting, wine and a cheeseboard? No, there is not.
3. There’s more to do than eat and drink.
The outside of Newport Vineyards has beautiful picnic tables in the middle of the vineyards, tables along a few patios, seats at the outdoor bar, and more. But there’s more to do outside than just sit, enjoy the view, sip and eat. The outside has fun lawn games to enjoy like Corn Hole, Jenga, and more. There were plenty of people enjoying the outdoor games with friends and family. There is also live music to listen to. During the weekends in the summer, melodies float through the air from 1 – 4 p.m. on the outside terrace. As the sun goes down on Wednesdays, the outside firepits light up and live music is played as well.
4. They have really cool events.
These people really know how to incorporate wine with…well, anything. Newport Vineyards has hosted yoga classes, dinners with educational speakers, class to teach people about wine and cheeses, farmer’s markets, and more. Did someone say yoga with wine involved? Sign me up! There next event is their Farewell Rosé party on Wednesday, August 9. As they bid farewell to their 2016 Dry Rosé for the season – a bestseller – they are celebrating its exit in style. Its our last chance to get our hands on a bottle from the season while socializing over fire pits, listening to live music, nibbling on cheese boards, and satisfying our sweet tooth with D’Licious Dessert’s Cupcake and Wine Tasting Pairing. The Rosé was to die for, so it is no question that we will be attending. The event is free, but its expected to be popular, so make sure to register here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/farewell-rose-fireside-live-music-tickets-36519411543
5. The people who work here will make your experience unforgettable.
One last thing to mention about Newport Vineyards is the level of expertise, passion, and customer service of those who run this amazing establishment. It starts all the way at the top with Co-owner Paul Nunes. Paul not only led the tour himself, but sat to dine and taste with us, answering all the questions we had about the vineyard. It is clear he lives and breathes making local wine in a sustainable way.
The bartenders at the tasting were so knowledgeable about each wine – they could describe it perfectly and tell you exactly what it would pair nicely with. If you’re like me, you aren’t equip with “wine lango” – the words “oaky” and “buttery” don’t make sense to me. But I guarantee you, just describe the flavors you typically like in a wine or drink to these folks behind the tasting bar, and they will pair you with a wine you’ll love. Thanks, Matt! Lastly, Chef Andy came to talk with us after we ate and his passion for creating dishes was apparent from the second he spoke. He takes pride in buying local – extremely local – and creating everything from paprika to sausage in – house. He experiments, he isn’t afraid to be different, and he puts his own spin on the classics. We would also like to thank the rest of Newport Vineyards’ staff for being so accommodating, friendly, and professional.
We’ll be back really soon, Newport Vineyards. Literally soon, like this upcoming Wednesday for the Farewell Rosé party. See you all there!