The biggest reason why Carmelo DeCicco decided to reopen his family’s building at 57 North Front Street as a wine and liquor store, was the spirit of investment that he sensed in the Stockade. The city was investing in renovation of the Pike Plan. New restaurants were repurposing historic old buildings and Back Stage Productions had returned their building to its historically theatrical roots, but with a cutting edge flavor. After 5 hectic months of intensive renovation, what used to be a tailor shop reopened as a trending potable emporium.
Long-time Kingston residents will remember DeCicco’s Taylor Shop, run by Carmine’s father, which kept Kingston looking sharp from 1968 to 1990. The building stood empty for twenty years, before Carmelo DeCicco noticed the spirit of optimism and innovation in Uptown and decided to open Blue 57, an upscale wine and spirits store.
Getting the store ready would have been a daunting task, if Carmelo’s brother Sal had not been a master carpenter specializing in fine cabinetry. Together the two brothers took their dream from the blueprint to the Blue 57, which had its soft opening the first week in October. A grand opening celebration is scheduled for November 18 with the Chamber of Commerce cutting the ribbon.
One featured wine company will be Dreaming Tree Wines, by the Dave Matthews Band and made by Steve Reeder. Dreaming Tree offers wines from sustainably farmed grapes, with the cheerful philosophy, “Hey, there’s nothing wrong with collecting wine, but wouldn’t you rather drink it instead.?” Blue 57 will also be featuring 14 Hands Wines among their many selections of wines and spirits.
On October 27, shoppers will have an opportunity to sample the above as Blue57 hosts a wine tasting from 5 to 7 pm. It may be rather unconventional. Dave Matthews, discussing his first taste of Crush Red Wine said, “I swallowed it before I put the glass down. There wasn’t any opportunity to spit.” (At traditional wine tastings, the participants do not swallow the wine, but merely experience its flavors and bouquet.) Since Crush Red Wine is described as having “notes of smokey berry and a pop of raspberry jam”, tradition is probably not going to be followed.
Those who want to follow Carmelo DeCicco’s investment in Kingston’s retail future can do so on Facebook, and there is an intoxicating web page in development. In the meantime, Carmine probably agrees with Dreaming Tree that “…the best vintage is pretty much right now.” Wine also makes the perfect holiday gift, and if one over shops, one can always sip the extras!