Amanda Smeltz wasn’t the most obvious choice to take over a wine program in a Midtown Manhattan restaurant. Before she came to Bar Boulud and Boulud Sud, across from Lincoln Center, Smeltz was in the hinterlands of Brooklyn, fueling the raucous, exploratory scene at Roberta’s with Hungarian furmints and skin-contact Georgian wines. But it’s a brilliant move on Daniel Boulud’s part to keep his places as relevant now as they were when they opened. While Smeltz has retained the signature Big Bottle specials and core focus on French wines in both places, she’s brought with her a new generation of winemakers to freshen things up. If you like Allemand Cornas, she might pour you something from Domaine de la Grande Colline, made by his former mentee Hirotake Ooka. And while there’s still plenty of Burgundy, you might want to check out the elegant pinot from Botanica in South Africa, or Swick Le Sous Bois, a no-sulfur-added pinot from the Columbia Gorge. Her picks tend toward the low-intervention, saline and edgy, bringing an energy to the table that seems to make the rich food even easier to digest.
20 W. 64th St., New York, NY
This story appears in the print issue of April 2017.
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