Food News

The Forge: Nitrogen and Smart Cards in the New Wine System

So perhaps it wasn't fair of us to try to squeeze information out of The Forge's long-time executive sommelier Gino Santangelo over multiple glasses of wine at a South Beach Wine and Food Festival dinner, but we just couldn't resist. After all, news has been trickling in about The Forge's upcoming reopening (March 29) and, heck, inquiring minds needed some dish.

One thing many hope won't change much is The Forge's endlessly educational underground wine cellar that only few have toured, even though the restaurant's flashy new website teases an "expansion." But they're wrong...or at least they may be..cuz we can't get formal confirmation.

But Santangelo didn't say his den of treasures would be changing

drastically. He did mention that, in addition to having a new executive

chef in the kitchen (Dewey LoSasso)

and all kinds of chic, new décor adjustments, thanks to designer

Francois Frossard, The Forge be offering an innovative

wine-by-the-glass serving system, that sources confirm will be from the Georgia-based company Enomatic. The system uses pressurized nitrogen, self cleaning technology, and smart cards to let wine-lovers choose as much or as little as they want. It's beautiful and back-lit with stainless steel. It's not clear what grade of the gizmo the Forge is looking at, but in any case, it's amazing.

[If you have been around this town for a while, you may recall the rumors that a $125,000 wine-by-the-glass dispenser Alvin Malnik put in around mid-2008 nearly destroyed the entire restaurant. Ah, the irony.]

But let's just put that behind us and focus on the future, wherein oenophiles will pour grapey goodness into their stemware in a sheer state of bacchanalia, forever changing the relationship between bartender and barfly. The website promises we can slurp from 80 wines by the glass, but there's no telling if we can pour all those labels ourselves. Or drink that much in one night, for that matter. But we'll die trying.