Women in Wine – Sipstirs Wine Club Tasting
May 12 @ 7:30 pm - 8:30 pmFree
Women In Wine – Sipstirs Wine Club Tasting Event
Sipstirs May Wine Club is being taken over by Nicole Keiley – Housatonic Wine Co. and Mary Taylor – Mary Taylor Wines. These two women will showcase their portfolio of exceptional wine and walk us through their World.
*A selection of wines are available, will be tasting and discussing. You choose!
Mary Taylor Wine— Think Outside the Grape
You won’t find the name of any familiar grape variety on the label of a bottle of Mary Taylor Wine. That’s because, after years of working with European wineries, Mary came to understand firsthand why the great wine regions of Europe labeled their wine not according to the grape, but the “place name” or “appellation” where it was made. That reason is “terroir.” Although difficult to translate, it refers to the wine’s unique ability to reflect the identity of its site of origin. Whether known in French as appellation d’origine protégée, in Spanish as denominación de origen, or in Italian as denominazione di origine controllata, the idea is the same: each designated area imparts its own special character, no two expressions alike. Today, it is Mary’s mission to unlock the world of European “appellation” wines by working with individual growers in multiple villages—from Bordeaux and Anjou to Valençay — who produce exceptional regional wines at extremely approachable prices using a heightened sense of sustainable farming. Mary offers affordable wines of integrity that bring the magic of their terroirs to the market.
For the span of her professional life, Mary has been active in all aspects of the wine industry, whether selling high-end French and Italian wines at the Sotheby’s wine auction, opening a retail store in lower Manhattan, serving as the president of a tri-state area wholesale company, or working as a portfolio manager for a major distributor covering the entire United States. Needless to say, from the very start she has intrinsically gravitated to the wines of Europe, with their strong emphasis on regionality and “place.” To her, the “Old World” ability to capture the flavor of an entire region and translate it into a complex but well-categorized system of gastronomy represents an enormous cultural gift. So strong was this sense of calling that in 2007, at the age of thirty, Mary hopped on a plane and flew to the storied region of Burgundy, where she fully immersed herself in the local wine industry. There, among some of the world’s most dedicated artisan winemakers, she observed carefully. What she was learning in the vines, Mary combined with her passion for storytelling and launched a popular newsletter, “The Thoreau Wine Society.” Offering bottles from small French producers in partnership with New York retailer Jean Luc Le Du, it was named one of 2008’s “Best Wine Reads” by Food & Wine magazine. As a result of her years of experience, working both with consumers and members of the trade and tasting thousands of wines, Mary came to realize that American consumers needed a brand to help guide us through the complex landscape of European wine. It was not until 2015, however, when she turned that vision into a reality by creating Mary Taylor Wine. Soon after, her first White Label Bordeaux was born. Mary created her import company in 2017 and now sells to 40 US states and counting. Mary lives in Connecticut and is an avid explorer, crisscrossing Europe multiple times per year in search of that next great “story in a bottle.”
Nicole Keiley, Housatonic Wine Co.
Nicole Keiley started her career in hospitality, working her way through the ranks in restaurants from Maine to Colorado. During her decade of experience in the restaurant industry she fostered her love of food and wine. Coming from a background in anthropology, it was the stories and traditions imbedded in local cultures that were her ultimate hook into the wine world.
Working in and managing small restaurants molded Nicole’s passion for hard work and the goal to one day build something of her own. Housatonic Wine Company was born in Vermont in 2019 and grew into Connecticut in the summer of 2020. Housatonic works closely with Mary Taylor Wines, along with other small and independently owned import companies. All wines represented by Housatonic Wine Company are in partnership with winemakers and farmers who hold the highest respect for their land, their farming techniques and wine making practices.
With goals to further grow her distribution throughout New England in the coming years, Nicole is happy to settle into her new home in Connecticut and focus on building a curated selection of wines that she is proud to represent and excited to introduce to the Connecticut.