As all New Yorkers know, each season holds unique magic as it descends over the city. Winter brings gleaming blankets of snow to the sidewalks, bold red wines, and bourbon apple cider sours to drink menus. In spring, as bartenders mound crushed ice in silver cups for Mint Juleps and pour glasses of Sauvignon Blanc, chromatic blooms burst around the city. Then, the bone-warming heat of summer beckons hordes of New Yorkers to drink and dine al fresco, savor sunsets after 8 p.m., and sip crisp pilsners.
But nothing holds a candle to autumn in the city. “Fall in New York is the absolute best time to be here. It’s why everyone falls in love with the city. It feels like you’re living in an old-school movie,” says Jenny Mollen, an actor, Instagram personality, and writer of the new hit novel “City of Likes.”
Best of all, autumn means the return of Food Network’s New York City Wine & Food Festival (NYCWFF), a four-day-long affair featuring over 80 events, and culinary contributions from over 400 chefs representing all five boroughs. For its 15th year, from October 13-16, venues across the city will host gastronomic superstars, bartenders, and influencers at a variety of tastings, culinary demonstrations, and covetable cocktail parties benefitting God’s Love We Deliver, a charitable institution providing millions of meals and nutritional counseling to New Yorkers living with severe illnesses.
The festival concludes on Sunday with a rosé-drenched celebration, dubbed Rooftop Rosé, at the recently opened RT60 Rooftop Bar & Lounge atop the new Hard Rock Hotel New York. Hosted by Mollen, guests will savor sips of rosé cocktails and snack on delicious bites dreamed up by the hotel’s team of talented chefs: a perfect complement to the drink menu. Guests will mingle with the celebrity author high above the bustle of Time Square as the sunset illuminates their chilled pink drinks. Even better, each guest will receive a signed copy of “City of Likes,” Mollen’s fictional love letter about Manhattanite life told through the eyes of copywriter Megan Chernoff.
“It’s an ideal way to spend an afternoon: rosé, New York City, on a rooftop. The view alone calls for a drink!” Mollen says.
Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits is pouring a bevy of perfectly chilled wine and rosé-based cocktails featuring the offerings of half a dozen cellars, including DAOU Wines, Hampton Water, Chateau Ste. Michelle, Listel, and avant-garde newcomer The Pale.
Debuting this fall, The Pale is the latest brainchild of Sacha Lichine, purveyor of the “rosé renaissance” and creator of Whispering Angel. Embodying lighthearted elegance, it is the perfect selection for this send-off soiree.
The wine embodies lighthearted elegance, providing an opportunity for the rosy-hued wine to rival the popularity of the aperitif cocktail hour, extending the pleasure of sipping into the last days of fall — the perfect selection for this send-off soiree.
In addition to serving up unmissable drinks and snacks, Rooftop Rosé accomplishes NYCWFF founder and director, Lee Schrager’s goal of bringing guests closer to the brilliant minds that shape the fabric of New York’s food and beverage industry.
“We want hosts and talent to connect directly with their fans on the ground. That’s what makes us unique — we program live culinary demos for our guests, book signings where fans get to meet and greet Food Network personalities, and a slew of masterclasses where consumers learn firsthand from some of the world’s greatest chefs and mixologists,” he says. “It’s not too often you learn how to roll sushi with Masaharu Morimoto or get an insider look at Shake Shack’s innovation kitchen.” Or hobnob with major personalities like Mollen, a glass of chilled wine, and a plate of decadent bites in hand.
The fête is a full-circle moment for Mollen. “I feel so legitimate. Like I’ve arrived. [Hosting an event] is something all New Yorkers dream of happening to them. I’m thrilled I was asked,” she says, encouraging attendees to gather their best friends and prepare for a seriously good time. “Cut loose, have a good time, and enjoy any time away from your kids — on a rooftop, with a beverage.”
Come one, come all to the rooftop. The rosé awaits.
Excited to spend the afternoon with Jenny and your friends sipping incredible wine? Click here to get your tickets.
This article is sponsored by the New York City Wine & Food Festival.