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About this Episode

Whitney Grant, wine educator and certified sommelier, and Robert Tas review the wine list of the exotic and delicious Sofreh, a Persian restaurant in Brooklyn. Voted one of the best restaurants in New York City by the New York Times, Sofreh’s philosophy is simple: food should be authentic, well-prepared, and delicious. And to help you choose the best wine to pair with items on the menu, Whitney identifies the tasting notes in wines and how they complement the food.

Wines reviewed include:

  • 2021 King Estate Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley
  • Roquefort Cotes de Provence Rosé
  • 2019 Bourgogne Pinot Noir from Burgundy
Transcript: Sofreh


RT: Hello and Welcome to CorkRules!

A podcast where (in each episode) we will review a Wine List from your favorite restaurants. I’m your host Robert Tas along with Whitney Grant, wine educator and certified sommelier.

Hello Whitney, it’s great to have you back on with CorkRules.

WG: Hi Robert! Thanks for having me! I’m excited to share these wine selections with you and the CorkRules listeners.


Before we jump in, let’s talk about CorkRules.

We created CorkRules to demystify wine list’s because we know from experience, that sometimes when we get that list handed to us, well… it can be intimidating, and even a little daunting.

Our aim is to help prepare you to navigate that list, find those hidden gems, or value wines or that special bottle that will take your dining experience over the top.

RT: So, sit back and listen as we review your favorite wine list.

RT: Today we are talking about Sofreh a Persian restaurant in Prospect Heights. Chef and Owner Nasim Alikhani’s has a simple philosophy for her food, “it should be authentic, well crafted, and delicious. We practice this in everything we create, from our homemade yogurts to our fresh-baked breads”. Inspired by the women in her family Sofreh offers traditional Persian food in a minimalist setting and of course a killer wine list.

Whitney I can’t wait to hear what do you think of the wine list.

WG:  Persian food is so full of flavors with incredible spices and herbs so let's start by taking a look at some wines by the glass that I think would complement some of the menu items offered at Sofreh. I’ve picked a white, rosé, and a red wine pairing so there is something for everyone!

RT: Sounds fun Whitney, what would you suggest for those that prefer white wine?

WG: I would recommend the 2021 King Estate Pinot Gris from my home in Willamette Valley, Oregon. Robert, you know I love my Oregon wines!

RT: Yes, you do, tell us more about this Pinot Gris.

WG: King Estate is located in the southern end of the Willamette Valley, focusing on sustainable agriculture and producing awesome wines. The 2021 Pinot Gris is a classic dry Pinot Gris, with aromas of honeysuckle and lime zest on the palate ripe pear, and saline with bright acidity making it a great wine to pair with the Catch of the Day which is prepared in a tamarind sauce.

RT: What is the next wine you’d recommend a glass of?

WG: The Roquefort Cotes De Provence Rosé would pair nicely with the Feta and Herb Flatbread or the Watermelon Feta Salad. This rosé is a blend of Grenache Noir, Syrah, Cinsault, Carignan, Mourvèdre, Clairette, and Vermentino. Beautiful pale pink color with flavors of white fruits, citrus, a hint of fennel. The wine will really compliment the creaminess of the feta.

RT: You can’t go wrong with a Rosé from Provence. What is the last pairing you have for us?

WG: Lastly, we have the 2019 Bourgogne Pinot Noir from Burgundy this lighter-bodied red wine would complement the richness of the eggplant and whey dip or the Smoked Eggplant main dish. A classic French wine with flavors of ripe cherry, raspberry, silky texture, crisp acidity, with some surprising tannin.

RT: Those selects certainly complement the incredible food at Sofreh. So Whitney, is there anything you would recommend for someone looking to explore a region that might not be as commonly seen on wine lists?

WG: There are a few wines I would recommend if you are looking to try something new!

For white wines I would suggest the 2020 Gruner Veltliner from the (Needer-Ouster-ike) Niederosterreich region in Austria.  Gruner Veltliner is the signature grape produced in Austria typically great food wine with high acidity, lemon and apple aromas, and savory, herbaceous flavors comparable to a Sauvignon Blanc. 

For red wines, I would recommend the Chateau Musar from the Bekaah (Bee-ka) region of Lebanon. The 2019 “Jeune Rouge” is a blend of Cinsaut, Cab Sauv, and Syrah. Chateau Musar is a historic winery with grapes first planted in the 1930s. This blend is unoaked and fermented in cement-lined casks. On the palate, you can expect a silky texture and a bright aromatic nose. Flavors black currant, raspberry, and cherry. Lebanon has a rich winemaking history dating back thousands of years to biblical times. If you get a chance to taste any wine from this region I would highly recommend it!

RT: Those sound like some exciting regions to explore! Were there any other wines that stood out to you?

WG: There is a wine on the list from one of my personal favorite French regions from the Rhone valley, Chateauneuf-Du-Pape. Consists of 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah, and 10% Mourvédre made from old vines giving the wine beautiful concentrated flavors of dark berries, and subtle hints of cedar and vanilla from 50% new oak. I love the wines from this region.

Now if you’re only looking for a glass I would recommend the 2020 Champalou (COMP-A-LOU) Vouvray a Chenin Blanc from the Lorie Valley in France. This is a dry wine aged in stainless steel. Super refreshing flinty minerality balanced by florals and honeyed fruit. I really enjoy having a glass of Chenin, especially in the summer. This is another wine that I love.

RT: Whitney, thank you so much for all your great suggestions and helping us navigate Sofreh’s wine list. I can’t wait to go try them myself.

WG: Thanks for having me, Robert, I always enjoy chatting with you about great wines and great food! Looking forward to chatting with you again soon.

RT: To our audience, thank you all for joining us here on CorkRules.

If you would like us to review one of your favorite restaurants, please send us email to: Info@CorkRules.com or visit our web website where we have a request form available and we will do our best to get it in the queue as quickly as possible.

We are looking forward to being with you on another CorkRules episode soon. In the meantime, please check out our website for other episodes of your favorite restaurant wine lists.

And finally, drink what you love and please make sure you drink responsibly.

Thank you.




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