CONCERTS at City Winery NYC: A Year in Review

With 351+ shows in the past 365 days, here is a flashback to City Winery NYC’s concert highlights. Visit our tickets page for a complete line-up of upcoming shows:


1) Gipsy Kings: 25th Anniversary Tour (1/24 & 1/25/2014)
Last January we were lucky enough to treat fans to a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the Gipsy Kings 25th anniversary tour in our small and intimate space. As expected, the band delivered two incredible performances and brought the audience dancing to their feet.


2) An Evening with David Crosby (1/28, 1/29, 1/31 & 2/1/2014)
David Crosby is one of Rock n’ Roll’s greatest legends. During his four-night run, he covered a range of material from his days with Crosby, Still and Nash through his most current solo album managing to satisfy his fans across the board . This may have been David’s first time at City Winery but certainly not his last. Expect to see Croz, as well as Stills and Nash, again in 2015.




Photo Credit: The Aquarium Weekly


3) The Music Of Paul Simon – Live Rehearsal Show feat. Antibalas and special guests: L.P., Tunde Adebimpe, Isobel Campbell and Andy Cabic, John Doe, Bob Mould, Josh Ritter, Brett Dennen, Angelique Kidjo (3/30/2014)
Now in its 5th year, staging a live rehearsal show at City Winery the evening before our “Music of” series at Carnegie Hall has become a much-loved tradition. The 2014 show allowed attendees a glimpse into the working process required to put together a large-scale show featuring over 20 artists performing a celebrated musician’s classics. We like to you think you would be hard pressed to find such an amazing group of artists performing Paul Simon’s vast catalog anywhere but City Winery. It was a night to remember but if you missed it fear not. Our 2015 tribute to David Byrne and The Talking Heads promises to be equally rocking.


4) Todd Snider (6/11/2014)
The bookers at City Winery New York are BIG fans of Todd. After several years sitting on our “wish list” we were able to secure a date last summer. Todd’s show, in which he sang and shared portions of his new book, “I Never Met A Story I Didn’t Like” was one of the funniest and most enjoyable of the year. Catch him again in Spring 2015.


5) The Summer of Nuggets: Nuggets 40th +2 Anniversary Feat. members of the Patti Smith Band and Special Guests: Glenn Patscha, Brian Mitchell, Chris Bruce, Jeff Young, Larry Campbell, Daniel Sadownick, Catherine Russell, Fiona McBain, Briggan Krauss, John Ellis, Jon Cleary, Zev Katz, Steven Bernstein (6/18, 7/10 & 8/31/2014)
After two years of scheming and dreaming with Lenny Kaye and Tony Shanahan of Patti Smith’s band, we finally pulled this residency together. Lenny’s “Nuggets” compilations are curated celebrations of pysch, punk, acid and garage rock released from the mid-1960s and on. Each show covered a different volume of classics, featuring a series of special guests from Joan Osborne and Marshall Crenshaw to Patti Smith. We are ever grateful to Lenny, Tony and their house band who brought this incredible residency to life.


6) Jackshit With Special Guest Appearance by Jackson Browne (8/8/2014)
You can thank Jackson Browne personally for bringing this one to the table. Jackshit, comprised of members from Jackson and Elvis Costello’s bands (and sometimes Greg Leisz), is a twangy, rock n’ roll group that covers tunes from The Byrds “Sweetheart of the Rodeo” era, Gram Parsons, The Stanley Brothers and a few originals. Jackson sat in making the night extra special and together we all sang Pete Thomas happy birthday.


Photo Credit: Dennis Manuel


7) X – 8/21: Los Angeles, Wild Gift, Under the Big Black Sun, More Fun in the New World (8/21, 8/22, 8/23 & 8/24)
John Doe returned again to our stage, this time bringing his old band mates from the incendiary band, X. These punk rock legends turned the volume up and brought the house down. If you made it to a show, you now know that Billy Zoom has a custom amplifier always set on max volume – something to think about!


8) Something from Nothing: An All-Star Tribute to the Music of Billy Preston feat. Glenn Patscha, Larry Campbell, Catherine Russell, Marc Cohn and Jon Cleary (8/26/2014)
This show was a personal favorite of the City Winery bookers. Glenn handpicked a killer band to pay homage to one of rock n’ rolls finest musicians. Marc, Catherine, Jon and co. celebrated Billy’s solo catalog as well as his contributions to other incredible albums from the era.

New York Music Photographer | Ahron R. Foster

Right to Left: Glenn Patscha, Brian Mitchell, Chris Bruce, Jeff Young, Larry Campbell, Daniel Sadownick, Catherine Russell, Fiona McBain, Briggan Krauss, John Ellis, Jon Cleary, Zev Katz, Steven Bernstein.

Photo credit: Ahron Foster

9) Josh Ritter (9/4, 9/6 & 9/7/2014)
Josh is another artist that has been sitting on our wish list for many years. This fall he took the stage for three sold out shows and despite playing a full set of 23 brand new songs, he did not leave anyone in the house disappointed. Fingers crossed that we can make this an annual tradition.


10) Jeff Bridges & The Abiders W/ Jessie Bridges (9/2/2014)
Our show with Jeff last September was in the making for six years and worth every minute of the wait. In a rare break from his busy film schedule and large theater plays, Jeff presented two sold out performances back to back in one evening. Fans relished the opportunity to see that “The Dude” can in fact, really play the guitar.

Bridges 2

 Photo credit: Derek Meade


11) Langhorne Slim (4/15, 10/4, 12/1, 12/2/2014)
This guy… what can we say. Langhorne took on the status of a City Winery staple this year, being one of the first musicians to tour all four City Winery’s in 2014. Fans were treated to four sold out, solo acoustic shows throughout the year. If you’re not familiar yet, we strongly suggest updating your playlists and starting 2015 off on the right foot.


Photo credit: WFUV


12) Ryan Bingham – (11/26/2014)
We knew Ryan would deliver a show to remember and deliver he did. With a voice is unlike anyone else making music today, Ryan set the tone with a rambunctious alt-country rock set. Fans left incredibly happy and we look forward to bringing him back many, many times in the years to come.

EVENTS at City Winery: A Year in Review

2014 was an epic year for our event department. With 316 events on the books, we have had some great events and most importantly wonderful clients come through! From wine tastings, to not for profit galas, weddings and award dinners, all have been rewarding in different ways!


Here is a shortlist of our top 10 events in 2014!


House of SpeakEasy Gala – January 27, 2014

A group of literary savants hosted their star studded first annual gala with us. Uma Thurman, Salman Rushdie and Adam Gopnick were among the many who attended, as well as an intimate performance from our friend Dar Williams.

 House of Speakeasy- Uma Thurman


Gatorade Super Bowl Party- January 30, 2014

We kicked off the year with hosting one of the largest sponsors of the Super Bowl, Gatorade! Having the Super Bowl in town was very exciting and they partnered with the Trump SoHo across the street to host the players and their top executives.


James Suckling Wine Tastings – February 11, March 11, May 6, and November 18, 2014

Wines of the Andes, The Three B’s (Brunello, Babaresco, Barolo), Super Tuscan and Wines of Bordeaux are some of the best wines we have had in house! Each event was a huge success with hand selected cheese pairings and music to go with each themed event. We look forward to hosting James Suckling and Zachy’s for many more stellar tasting of all 90+ rated wines!

 James Suckling Taste of the Andes



Tribeca Film Festival Director’s Brunch- April 22, 2014

Robert DeNiro hosted a brunch for all the directors who participated in the Film Festival.


 AMP Awards- May 7, 2014

The Association of Music Producers hosted their annual Awards reception with us. American Authors performed a few of their hits as well as Sky Ferreira. The room was buzzing with good vibes and excitement for all of the winners! 


Weddings at City Winery – 23 throughout 2014!

We love weddings and our venue provides such a unique background for the couple looking for a rustic and laid back vibe!

 Jamie and Billy- photo by Craig Paulson

 Photo credit: Craig Paulson  

Ocean Elders – September 21, 2014

A gala to protect our ocean wildlife hosted by Richard Branson, our friend Jackson Browne amongst royalty and world leaders.


Guitar Mash – November 16, 2014

Over 200 guests of all ages showed up with their guitars in hand to jam with legendary guitarist and musicians such as Valerie June, Mark Stewart, Chad Smith, David Bromberg, Chris Eldridge and many more!

 Guitar Mash- photo by Chuck Lanza

Photo credit: Chuck Lanza 


African Children’s Choir – November 20, 2014

The ACC was back for their third year in a row! We look forward to this event every year and the smiling faces of all the girls and boys from East Africa, specifically Uganda, Kenya, Ghana and South Africa. They performed a variety of songs and dances and Rob Thomas performed a few of his most recent songs to round out the night of performances.

 African Children's Choir

Photo credit: Andrzej Liguz


Animal Care and Control Fundraiser- December 5, 2014

Our guests were not only 200 humans, but also a handful of the sweetest cat and dog rescues! Four dogs took the stage to hope that one of the attendees would adopt them the next day! A beautiful night to support the work that the Animal Care and Control folks are doing each day!

Animal Care and Control- photo by Jack Reynolds Photography and Jason Howard Photography 

Photo credit: Jason Howard 

 Contact our events department at to learn about hosting your special event with us! More information here 




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New York (December 17, 2014) – City Winery, the unique 300-seat music venue with locations in NY, Chicago, Napa and Nashville, has announced today a major innovation with its mobile ticketing program. The “luxury concert venue,” founded by Knitting Factory founder Michael Dorf, released the “seat-picking” system when it launched its own proprietary ticketing platform in 2008. Since then, the company has experienced tremendous growth in sales with upwards of 300,000 tickets selling a year and 90% of the 300-seat shows selling out on a monthly basis—all tickets sold through their own website.


City Winery has also created a unique membership program for its guests, with a number of perks including a 48-hour advance notice on all shows, zero ticketing fees, a rewards program, and a feature called “virtual sommelier” offering customized suggestions for wines to try or shows to see based on the customer’s previous consumption. The new program will allow members to pick their top 5 favorite seats, a perk that has never been offered before. When new shows are announced, customers will receive notice on their smart phone via the weekly e-mailers and they can then purchase their favorite seat with just one touch.


“The customer relationship has been at the heart of our model from the very beginning. We are trying to use technology as a tool to improve the ‘user experience’ while at the same time apply a Danny Meyer level of ‘hospitality’ to our process,” says Michael Dorf. “We are in a rare position to have a small enough venue that allows us to have direct relationships with our customers and therefore offer a level of unprecedented service to our members. “


The company currently has over 5000 paid memberships, called “vinofiles”, growing on a monthly basis. With new venues in more markets, City Winery expects this number to grow approximately 100% in the next year. “Some people join the membership to get advance notice on shows that will sell out quickly, while others appreciate the economics and savings on the typically high fees charged by other ticketing services,” Dorf says. “Some also really enjoy how the system records their wine consumption and makes recommendations. For us, our ultimate goal is to consider the entire customer experience from when they first learn about a show or wine tasting all the way to the memory the next day. The ticketing is a big part of the process and we think this 1-click “favorite seat” upgrade really makes the mobile purchase much easier.”


About City Winery:

City Winery, founded in 2008, strives to deliver the highest-end combined culinary and cultural experience to urban wine enthusiasts. They are a unique facility located in several cities in the US including New York, Chicago, Napa and Nashville. The brand combines a fully functioning winery with intimate concerts, food & wine classes, private-events and fine dining. City Winery has created a compelling mix for their sophisticated clientele of foodies, and active cultural patrons bringing the wine country experience to the heart of large cities.

Click here for more information about the VinoFile membership

Holiday Wine Pop-Up Shop on 12/16 5-9pm

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Join us on December 16th for the holiday wine pop-up shop located in the Winery! Free wine sampling, raffle & gift packages available – stock up on seasonal favorites for all of the special people you’re gifting to!

Family Bonding Over Blending Wine at City Winery: The Village Voice


By Lauren Mowery
Published Fri., Dec. 5 2014 

During adolescence, parents often teach their children the maxim that the best gift they can give is the one they make. Does it follow, then, that a better gift would be one you make with your parents? In the case of the Browns, it overwhelmingly does.

As the holidays draw near, millions of Americans prepare for the annual onslaught of familial obligations coupled with the mania of shopping for an array of presents; some view the season with dread, while others genuinely enjoy the chance to bond with relatives. For the Browns, connecting takes the form of uncorking a bottle of their very own Brown Family Reserve, a wine they blended together at City Winery (155 Varick Street, 212-608-0555) in New York to give away throughout the holidays to clients and friends.

Jeff Brown, a principal of Charles Street Capital (a real estate development firm active in Brooklyn), first approached his father, Doug Brown, with the idea of making their own wine almost three years ago. “I was telling him about a barrel that a colleague, Steve van der Zwan, also an investor of City Winery, had commissioned, and how he had given bottles out as holiday gifts,” recalls Jeff.

As a longtime wine lover, Doug, a former lawyer now partner in Charles Street Capital, liked the idea: “We thought commissioning a barrel would be a lot of fun and could potentially be good for business.” They contacted the the director of wine sales at City Winery, Raul Mesias, to solicit more details and set up their first consultation.

City Winery is a one-of-a-kind operation. Located in downtown Manhattan on the western edge of Soho, it’s the brainchild of well-known Knitting Factory founder Michael Dorf. The project was born of his passion for both wine and music, leading to the amalgamation that is now New York’s only fully-functioning winemaking facility that also serves as a 21,000 square foot restaurant and event space, equipped with a stage, state-of-the-art sound system, and in-house A/V.

Perhaps cooler than the fact that concert goers can drink wine made in the cellar below while listening to first-rate blues, jazz, and rock bands above, is that City Winery offers aspiring vintners access to try their hand at crafting wine in an urban setting.

To fulfill winemaking dreams, however, prospective vintners have to buy into a barrel. There are several levels of opportunity ranging from sharing one to purchasing the entire container of juice which yields around 21 to 23 cases. Jeff and his dad opted to go big. Says Doug: “We thought that we were getting pretty good value, but I can’t lie. The idea was daunting. With 23 cases, you don’t want something you don’t want to drink.”

Fortunately, all members of the barrel program have access to City Winery’s chief winemaker and Rhône Valley native David Lecomte. With a degree in viticulture, a masters in enology and winemaking, and stints in several well-known wine regions in France, Virginia, and New York under his belt, Lecomte ensures his client’s wines don’t disappoint.

“We found the prospect of blending a bit unnerving because when we tried it before in Rutherford, we didn’t really like what we made,” Doug says. “But a professional winemaker at City Winery wasn’t going to let it get screwed up. There is the element of risk if you end up not being happy. But that makes it fun.”

After selecting the size of their commitment, both in volume and expense (the program isn’t cheap, ranging from $29 to $38 per bottle, depending on grape variety and vineyard) the Browns had to decide on the wine. Options range from whites like Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, and Chardonnay to reds like Pinot Noir and Syrah. But Jeff and his dad, longtime Cabernet Sauvignon and Bordeaux lovers, chose a muscular 2010 Napa Cab from the Bettinelli Vineyard in Yountville as the base for a Bordeaux-style blend. “We wanted to make what we drink,” says Jeff.


While some participants opt to be involved with their wine-child from birth (crush) to bottle — a very long, delayed gratification process for those making age-worthy reds — the Browns picked a base wine already in oak from the previous vintage. While that shaved off a year of the process, it still took nearly 18 months from joining the program before they would be drinking a bottle with a steak off the grill.

Members are invited to various events throughout the year to keep them engaged while their wines evolve. City Winery hosts both a spring and fall harvest party (it sources grapes from vineyards in both hemispheres), allows four private barrel tastings (to check on the wine’s development), plus offers access to a Wine 101 Education Series with Lecomte. Other benefits include VinoFile Membership, wine and cheese pairing classes, and advance notice of festivals, events, and musical performances.

In the meantime, the Browns worked with the in-house designer, included with their package, to craft a label. Fond of the simple but elegant Châteaux images that grace many bottles from Bordeaux, the Browns submitted a photo of their family home for the design.

After two years in barrel, their Cab was deemed rested and ready to go. Gathering at City Winery, they met Lecomte for their blending session. “By definition, we were getting a big Cab,” says Doug. “We wanted to soften it up and give it a longer finish. It reminded me of being in a chemistry lab. After two hours, we took a vote, resulting in the final wine, the Brown Family Reserve.”

When asked how the wine turned out, especially after the long wait and financial investment, Doug remarks: “We’ve given away at least half of it. It makes a great calling card and ice breaker with our business clients, and we often bring our own wine to someone’s dinner. We had a college friend who is pretty knowledgeable about wine, and he said, ‘It’s a good thing this wine is really good since you have a lot of it.'”

The Browns liked the experience and their wine so much they’ve gone back for a second barrel, another Napa Cab, this time from Diamond Mountain. “We have been really happy with it, obviously, enough if we’d do it again,” says Doug.

Lauren Mowery is a wine and travel writer based in NYC. She blogs at Chasing the Vine.Follow Lauren on Twitter @ChasingtheVine

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