Wine Bar Preview: Lay Your Bets on the Red Pony


If you’re going to have a wine bar, have fun with it,” says Clark Moore. If you follow the county bar scene, you’ll easily recognize Moore’s name — along with his inventive cocktails — from time spent at Harper’s and Juniper. Now the GM at The Red Pony in Rye, a 40-seat wine bar under the same ownership as Wine at Five next door, Moore has cultivated the county’s most interesting by-the-glass wine selection. “I’m less concerned with varietal recognition than with bringing in the best stuff possible that yields a unique experience,” he explains. There’s sparkling rosé pet-nat, peppery tinto from the Canary Islands, an almost-orange Italian Cortese, biodynamic Oregon Pinot Noir, Spanish Monastrell, a floral Alsatian-style white blend, and Californian Nebbiolo, among more than 20 others.

A little overwhelmed by the seeming complexity of that selection? “I’m okay with that,” says Moore. “If you tell me what you like, I will find a match for you. These are wines that we carefully researched and tasted…[so that] a person who would never otherwise be drinking Mauzac now loves Mauzac because of what they described to me.”

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GM Clark Moore brings in an eclectic mix of varietals from across the globe, including a popular Alsatian Coucou, to pair with a selection of cheeses and charcuterie.

Of course, it’s bad form to drink on an empty stomach. The Red Pony sources cheese and charcuterie from the world’s major wine-growing regions, including a plate of meats from Spain’s famed black-footed pigs. As for cocktails, Moore’s distinctive drinks feature craft spirits like Catalonian olive-distilled gin, Indonesian red rice rum, and mesquite-smoked whiskey.

The Red Pony
53 Purchase St, Rye

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