Shure: Nashville’s New City Winery Gets Outfitted With an Abundance of Shure Gear

Shure Microphones

 

With locations in New York City, Chicago, and Napa, City Winery, the brainchild of Michael Dorf, founder of the iconic Knitting Factory, came to Nashville with one goal—to create a space that embodies the city’s shared passions for wine and music. A unique facility, City Winery combines a fully-functioning winery with intimate concerts, food and wine classes, private events, and fine dining. With upcoming performances from JT Hodges and Rhett Miller, the City Winery team turned to Shure to outfit the new location with audio equipment for private parties, a small restaurant stage, and a larger 570-person music venue.

City Winery partnered with Tour Supply, a company well-known in the live touring industry and audio partner for the existing City Winery locations, to integrate high-quality, intuitive gear. The challenge was to identify cost-effective, yet reliable products to serve a variety of different functions. Also, while the City Winery music venue is supported by a house production manager, the restaurant, winery, and private rooms required frequency agile systems that could be operated seamlessly by restaurant staff who have very little technical audio experience.

To address the many needs of City Winery, Tour Supply selected four channels of ULX-S® Wireless Systems and PSM® 900 Personal Monitoring Systems for the music venue. The team installed three channels of Shure’s entry-level BLX Wireless Systems for the restaurant and winery areas, MX412 Gooseneck Microphones to support corporate presentations and a dash of Shure wired and wireless microphones, including Beta 58, Beta 91A, Beta 98A, SM58®, and SM57.

“City Winery has been an amazing project for our team. The combination of wine, music, and culinary arts is something that appeals to the senses, but when under one roof, it makes for a challenging audio installation,” said Lance Wascom, Tour Supply CEO. “We’ve had close to a 20-year relationship with Shure. Using Shure equipment was a no-brainer for us, as it was for Mr. Dorf and his team. Not only is the sound quality superior, but the gear comes with great support from the Shure customer service team and our local reps over at HWPco Inc.”

A month into operations, the ULX-S Wireless System has proven effective in delivering premium sound quality for music acts. Additionally, the wireless is reliable and in a compact, seek form factor, fitting for the venue layout. In regard to PSM 900, Wascom commented “it’s the best dollar for dollar investment. We trust PSM for our touring artists and the PSM 900 delivers superb audio quality for the professional musicians performing at City Winery.”

In the restaurant and winery, the BLX Wireless System—with professional quality sound, simple setup, and an intuitive interface—has been easy for employees to use. The one-touch QuickScan frequency selection, that quickly locates the best open frequency in case of interference, means that employees don’t have to be bothered with the complexities of manual scanning. Additionally, the quality construction ensures it will hold up in the high-traffic environment.

To learn more about Nashville’s first fully-operational winery and the upcoming events at City Winery, please visit www.citywinery.com/nashville. To learn more about Tour Supply, visit www.toursupply.com.

For the full article, click here.

Lightning 100: Michael Dorf on Music Business Radio

Lightning 100 recently featured City Winery Founder and CEO Michael Dorf on their Sunday night Music Business Radio program hosted by David Hooper.

In 1986, at only 23 years old, Dorf founded The Knitting Factory, New York City’s go-to venue for independent music. Since that time, he produced over 200 records, a TV series, and become a very respected producer and promoter of indie music.

Dorf talks about his early career on the road managing artists, starting the Knitting Factory, record producing and how his love of music and wine lead to the creation of City Winery’s truly unique dining and concert experience.

Listen to the full interview below.

The Tennessean: Kristin Beringson blends Southern, Greek at City Winery

beringsonChef Kristin Beringson has been busy to say the least, having recently filmed an episode of “Chopped” and left Holland House to lead the kitchen at the new City Winery Nashville. We caught up with Beringson about her new gig.

Why did you decide to make the switch from Holland House to City Winery? I had been at Holland House for three and a half years. I felt I had grown all I could grow as a chef under that roof. The opportunity arose, and I really thought it would be a good chance to try new things. It was a 360 — a music venue, all this private event space, I could grow in a different way.

What was your goal for the menu? It’s very much foods that pair well with wines. It has a lot of Mediterranean influence, so French, Spanish, Italian, a little bit of Middle Eastern and especially Greek. I was born in Greece, so there’s a little Greek influence in everything I do. At Holland House, I kept it more contemporary American, Southern cuisine. Here it’s more Mediterranean flavors with a little bit of Southern flair. Like I have risotto balls, but instead of being stuffed with traditional flavors, it’s stuffed with pimiento cheese and short ribs.

How did you learn to cook? I didn’t start cooking until maybe five years ago. Cooking has always been something I loved. I was managing Target stores for years. I said, “I’m ready to be happy.” I enrolled in culinary school the next day.

What is your favorite dish off the menu? I’ve got my take on French onion soup, but it’s called Nash Onion Soup. It’s got smoked bone marrow and Kenny’s (Farmhouse) horseradish cheddar with house-made sourdough.

We have over 400 (wine) bottles and we do our own wines, but, unfortunately, we haven’t been able to make it on site yet. In the beginning of the year, when Tennessee law changes, we’ll be crushing grapes and barreling and aging on site. It will be a full service winery.

Describe your most memorable food moment. Recently one of my most memorable dining experiences I was up in New York City and I ate at Gramercy Tavern and got to meet chef Michael Anthony. I had the chance to see the kitchen. We ate 11 courses. The service and hospitality was completely beautiful and wonderful.

I filmed an episode for “Chopped” there. It’s airing soon. It’s called “Frankly Frantic.” It was crazy, but it was worth it.

What is your favorite tool and ingredient at the moment? Favorite ingredient is easy — it’s honey. I put local honey in just about everything I make. I think every dish needs a perfect bit of sweetness. And honey is so much better than sugar on so many levels. Tool: I have this one little knife I’ve had forever. I call it Woody. If I lose it, I lose my mind.

For the full Tennessean article, click here.

Warm Up with a Glass of Wine and Our Fireplace

restaurant fireplace

As the temperatures drop outside, stay warm inside with a seat by our fireplace and a glass of City Winery North Coast Zin. It pairs perfectly with Chef Kristin’s spice crusted lamb loin. We  lit the restaurant fireplace for the first time today. Come down and warm up with us daily starting at 5pm.

restaurant fireplace 2

Billboard: City Winery Finds New Home in Nashville

michael-dorf-city-winery-2014-billboard-650

There’s no shortage of performance venues in Nashville — it is Music City, after all — but Michael Dorf, owner of the just-opened City Winery, says he feels his establishment will offer fans a unique opportunity when watching live entertainment that will keep them coming back for more.

The businessman opened the first City Winery in New York. The original location allowed him to pair a winery with a music venue and see how the two could smash up in a city like New York. “I had been putting on shows for a long time and have been on tour with a number of bands,” he said. “I’ve done that for about 30 years. There was a need and an obvious opportunity for a higher-end concert experience that combined the elements of a seated environment with food and beverages into the overall experience. People are looking for more than French fries and beer. People care where their food comes from.”

Since then, Dorf has opened two other locations, in Chicago and Napa Valley. What led him to Nashville? “We were looking at where we really wanted to start to grow and show off the model, and there were a host of them. Nashville has so many great ingredients that it was a no-brainer. Between the convention center and what is going on from a real estate perspective, it just made sense. Obviously, the music industry is very well entrenched in Nashville and has been for a long time. But there was a missing piece between the Ryman and the smaller tourist venues on Broadway. There are some great venues like Franklin Theater and 3rd and Lindsley, but no one was approaching the culinary side the same way we are.”

The menu offers such fare as duck tacos, pan-roasted flatiron and leg of lamb flatbread, while the wine list includes over 400 selections. Musically, the lineup is very diverse, with such performers as Sandra Bernhard, Lucinda Williams, Dr. Ralph Stanley, K.T. Oslin and Joan Osborne booked for the fall lineup. Dorf says he wants a visit to City Winery to be one his clientele doesn’t forget.

“We really try to look at the complete experience at City Winery,” he said. “Years ago, we started a policy of having all of our staff read the book Setting the Table by Danny Meyer, a restaurateur from New York.  It’s a book about enlightened hospitality and that the customer experience starts from the first moment you plan a visit to a venue to the memories that you have after you leave. We pay a lot of attention to the ticketing process — how customers learn about the shows, and even how they pick their seat. We’ve built a proprietary ticketing program that allows the patron to pick the actual seat that they sit in. If you become a VinoFile member, our annual membership program, you get advance notice when we announce the concert. As a member, you don’t have to pay any service charges. We know what it’s like when you want to see a show, and it might cost $25 to $40, and there’s a $9 service fee added on top of that, which can really be frustrating.”

If his past successes are any indication, Dorf is betting that Tennesseans will make City Winery a favorite hotspot in The 615 by simply satisfying the senses. “We believe what you hear, what you smell and taste all come together to enhance the experience. We look at the holistic 360-degree experience that a customer is going to have to make the evening as memorable and special as possible. Time is a precious commodity, and we all have choices as to where we spend that time. We want to make those couple of hours as terrific as possible. It then becomes self-fulfilling. When the artist knows that their fans are enjoying themselves, they put on a better show. I think we’ve built a better mousetrap, and I think people will love it in a town where people love music, wine and food.”

 

For the full Billboard article, click here.

City Winery Celebrates Grand Opening

On Wednesday, October 1, nearly 1,100 people celebrated the highly-anticipated Grand Opening of City Winery’s newest venue in Nashville. Guests toured the variety of spaces City Winery has to offer including a VIP lounge, three patios, two restaurant areas and three private dining rooms. Patrons were able to taste wine from City Winery’s one-of-a-kind tap system. They also sampled selections from Chef Kristin Beringson’s new menu including Crispy Risotto Balls, Corned Duck Tacos and Wagyu Beef Tartare.

Founder and Owner, Michael Dorf welcomed the crowd and introduced Corel Chisel who once again commanded the City Winery stage. Corey’s soulful performance backed up by his doo-wop band was well-received by the engaged and energetic audience.

Special thank you to our City Winery Partners Reidel and Meyer Sound and our Grand Opening Sponsors, Lightning 100, Nashville Scene, Lipman Brothers, Uber, GFS, KLD Farms, Graceful Tables, Music City Tents & Events, A Village of Flowers and Notes for Education.

City Winery Nashville - Grand OpeningSherry Byrge, Founder and Owner, Michael Dorf and Chuck Byrge

City Winery Nashville - Grand OpeningKen Pelletier and Amanda Lao

 City Winery Nashville - Grand OpeningMichael Dorf welcomes the crowd.

City Winery Nashville - Grand OpeningDeana Ivey from the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corporation welcomes City Winery to Nashville.

City Winery Nashville - Grand OpeningCorey Chisel

City Winery Nashville - Grand OpeningCorey Chisel and City Winery Staffer Chelsea Bell

City Winery Nashville - Grand OpeningChef Kristin Berginson with party guests.

For more photos visit our Facebook page.  All photos by Rick Diamond/Getty Images for City Winery.

First Plates by Chef Kristin Beringson

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After pacing, stocking, prepping and plating, Chef Kristin Beringson’s food menu came to life on plates as the kitchen team served our staff for a menu training session yesterday.

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The restaurant opens to the public Thursday, October 2 at 5pm. Reservations are available via opentable.com or call 615.324.1010. We look forward to seeing you!

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City Winery Nashville: 48 Hours to Showtime

City Winery founder and CEO Michael Dorf had an aching head when he arrived at Nashville’s City Winery construction site this past week—not from overindulging in the exquisite wine his latest venue is serving up, but admittedly because of it.

“I rarely get headaches, and while I arrived with a cold from last week’s flight from Napa, upon returning to the construction site 48 hours before show time, I immediately got a pounding headache.”

And understandably so: Dorf’s newest project, the incredibly buzzed-about City Winery Nashville, was due to open in 48 hours as the premier venue for the city’s highly-anticipated Americana Music Association Festival and Conference.

And given that construction on the existing 36,000-ft warehouse had only begun a few months earlier, the show was far from ready to “go on.”

Phillip Before IMG_0867Pre-construction

As is the case with any grand debut or opening, stumbling blocks in the weeks and days leading up to the then-incomplete venue were anticipated—truthfully, they were expected, and Dorf admits he was surprisingly able to remain cool and collected. “I had complete confidence that both the operations team and production teams would be able to put on a show, move a crowd in and out, and serve them booze,” Dorf said. “I’ve certainly put on many a show in much worse, smaller, and less-than-ideal situations.”

But the obstacles facing Dorf in that moment of arrival extended far beyond the music. Questions about fire department sign-offs, insurance paperwork, legal and safety concerns—and not to be overlooked—the public’s perception of the venue all loomed over his already foggy head, thus explaining that pounding ache.

Luckily for the CEO, his dynamite team members were fully committed and deep in the trenches in those final 48 hours to showtime—experiencing a few headaches of their own on the road to success, some heartwarming and some downright hilarious.

Dolly_ErinStaff unloading venue chairs at Tennessee Brew Works who graciously let us store our tables and chairs with them during construction.

Michelle Albanese, Concert Manager for City Winery Nashville, was stressed, thanks to—wait for it: missing towels. “It’s my responsibility for making sure the artists are happy and have everything they need. Stage towels and water are basic requests for artists.”

Albanese recalls, “The day of the show, I knew I HAD to find them, and I so I went pod diving into a storage unity filled to the max with all the glassware for the entire space (a winery nonetheless). Crawling over boxes, under boxes, and wedged in between boxes, I was lots in a world of cardboard—and still couldn’t find them.”

One bad case of claustrophobia and one missing cell phone later, she located them, alright. “Opening that box was a wonderful feeling. End of story. None of the artists used them.”

Monday CW IMG_2039View of the venue from Monday, September 15

CW Building Staircase IMG_2197Welding the staircase on Monday, September 15.

For Raúl Mesías, Director of Wine Sales at City Winery NY, the journey to the successful launch of City Winery Nashville began with David Lecomte, CW’s chief winemaker, in New York, and was a little more arduous.

“Sunday at 5AM, we head to the winery in New York to pick up the truck with a goal to be in Nashville by Monday at 10AM. David and I drove 110 miles…and then truck broke down. We knew at that moment we had to transfer the whole load by hand—but we didn’t care. We were just eager to get to Nashville.”

The replacement truck arrived, and Mesías recalls that moment: seeing his comrade rolling kegs of wine and remembers the inspiration of getting the job done against the odds, erasing all of the pain and exhaustion they initially felt. By 2PM on Monday, the two were rolling out kegs once more…this time at their Music City destination. “The trip itself was quite an adventure!” Lecomte exclaimed.

Meanwhile back in Nashville, Chris Torri, AV Installation Manager, was experiencing a few technical glitches of his own. “We had no power, were missing part of our lighting package, and had nowhere to set up the sound board, much less plug it in!” he laments. “We were under the gun and needed to pull off the show.”

Torri remembers those two days as “excruciatingly painful,” but says, “We never took our eye off the prize.”

On Wednesday morning, just one day before the doors were set to open, lights were still being hung and cues were still being programmed—but progress was happening, and as the team continued to tirelessly work throughout the day, the room filled, the band took the stage, and the performance went off without a single hiccup.

CW Bryce Wed night AMA IMG_2313Bryce McCloud from Isle of Printing finished his wine bottle installation while the first AMA shows were happening in the venue. Wednesday, September 17.

It’s a million wonders that Marc Colletti, Production and Technical Director NY, recalls anything from those whirlwind 48 hours. Fresh off a plane from his honeymoon, Colletti had no time to prepare for the madness. “I only had time to go home, wash my clothes and hop a flight to Nashville from NY in time for sound checks.”

Firing up the PA system for the first time was both a thrilling and hectic experience for Colletti. “The floors were still being installed around me only hours before our first show.”

But once again, the hard work and dedication paid off. He says, “It’s hard to say what I enjoyed more. Being in the ‘do or die’ pressure cooker with the enormous weight and responsibility of facilitating the musicians to entertain their fans, or realizing that at the end of the evening, every member of the City Winery team came together to accomplish a fantastic evening without a hint of its actual urgency.”

Ed Greer, Chief Production Officer for City Winery arrived from NY just as the final 48 hours approached and immediately took charge of moving the site from a construction zone to a clean room ready to be set up and host the concerts.

“At 9.30pm we had 10 guys from the Rescue Mission next door arrive to move contractor tools, pallets of wood flooring and assorted building materials. They were great and at 10.30pm an overnight cleaning crew arrived and worked through until 4.30am to get everything clean and sparkling. The curtain installer arrived at 6.30am to hang the curtains in the now dust free space and the Nashville team were able to set tables and chairs and stock the bar.

Mike Simon who moved from CW Chicago to CW Nashville, clocked 13 miles on his pedometer during set up – I love that fact!

The floor install was completed at 2:30pm just as concert soundchecks were under way – a race for sure but one I knew we could (and had to) win.”

Mopping IMG952014091795024643438The floor being mopped in the very early morning hours on Wednesday, September 17.

For Phillip Katz, City Winery Construction Rep, the experience of opening City Winery Nashville meant making many personal sacrifices, including long days and nights away from his expectant wife, whose due date just happened to be this past week as well. “I had her full-on support—she’s amazing and I feel blessed.”

With his family far away, and his deadline a little too close for comfort, Katz decided to hunker down full-time in Tennessee, moving his Airstream (aka “Groove Tube”) to the So-Bro parking lot of the venue to serve as his home-base until the job was done.

He slept in the “Groove Tube” alone each night and was the first to unlock the gates for the contractors each morning at 6AM. Katz recalls, “I missed some significant personal, professional, and family milestones—some joyous and some painful, and I realized: if I was making the sacrifice, my efforts had to be successful. I realized: I could not confuse effort with results.”

And those efforts were rewarded. Katz was able to fly home for the birth of his first child, a beautiful daughter named Lilliana, and what’s more—he was able to bring his girls home back to Nashville and introduce them to the team as they worked around the clock until showtime.

David Richter, City Winery’s General Manager, remembers standing in the middle of the construction the morning of the big day. “I would have never thought we’d be standing in front of our doors ready and able to greet our first guests upon scheduled door time. Then I stepped back and remembered the teams that made it happen . . . all working in harmony with no fuss and plenty of smiles.”

IMG_7573Tuesday, September 16 at 5pm.

IMG_758524 hours later: Wednesday, September 17 at 5pm

Rebecca Spindler, Concierge Director for City Winery, won’t lie: she cracked open a few cold ones in anticipation of the final 48. With an optimistic mind, she and the team cleaned, trained ushers, arranged tables, set barricades and even installed an ATM on their own. “The night went off without a hitch for a bangin’ show!” Spindler recalls.

Anthony Aquilato, Production Manager and Sound Engineer, felt right at home amidst the insanity.

For Aquilato, the hustle of a rush opening was a familiar feeling, akin to his former days on the road.

“While I was touring in the 80s, we road dogs used the term ‘no sleep until Sydney’ all too frequently. Days upon days of back-to-back shows with little or no sleep,” he remembers. “Your crew was your platoon. Everyone was in it together. There was never a question of how or why—at 8PM, there WAS going to be a show.”

Fortunately, Aquilato found that same kinship and incredible work ethic with his City Winery team—and once again, he got to experience the incredible rush and sweet taste of success.

“The last 48 hours leading up to the opening of City Winery Nashville brought me back to those glory days of Rock and Roll. We all hit it hard and got it done. Everyone focused and working endlessly—there was a show to put on and come hell or high water, we were going to be ready.”

And ready they were: the shows launched beautifully last Wednesday with one of the Festival’s big award winners and starring attractions, Sturgill Simpson. The festival closed out on Sunday with Americana icon Lucinda Williams who will return to City Winery Nashville for three nights of shows November 24-26.

But there’s still more to be done and still more to come as the official opening of City Winery Nashville commences on Wednesday, October 1st—or as CEO Dorf (now free from his headache) teases, “The story is not over. The fat lady will sing only at the Grand Opening.”

15th Annual Americana Music Festival & Conference - Day 1City Winery Founder/CEO Michael Dorf welcomes Singer/Songwriter Jason Isbell and wife, Recording Artist Amanda Shires to the opening night of the Americana Music Festival. Wednesday, September 17 at 9PM.

(Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images for Americana Music)

 

Caleb Klauder Country BandCaleb Klauder Country Band was the first band to perform on the City Winery Nashville stage. Wednesday, September 17 at 10pm.

 

Americana Music Festival: Opening Night

We hosted our first official shows in the venue last night as the Americana Music Festival kicked off its long weekend of showcases. We hosted a full to capacity crowd who listened to Sturgill Simpson, Caleb Klauder Country Band and Lindi Ortega. Sturgill was the most anticipated set of the night and he delivered a blistering set that resulted in a standing ovation. Earlier that evening, Simpson won the Americana Music Association’s Emerging Artist of the Year award.

15th Annual Americana Music Festival & Conference - Day 1Sturgill Simpson – Rick Diamond/Getty Images

15th Annual Americana Music Festival & Conference - Day 1Sturgill Simpson – Rick Diamond/Getty Images

Screen Shot 2014-09-18 at 7.25.28 PMCaleb Klauder Country Band is the first band to play the City Winery Nashville stage.

Screen Shot 2014-09-18 at 7.25.12 PMLindi Ortega closed the evening with a rocking set that included a cover of the Bee Gees “To Love Somebody.”

Performing tonight is Grant-Lee Phillips, who will return to City Winery on November 5 with Howe Gelb, Linda Cantrell, Rodney Crowell, Joe Henry and Robyn Hitchcock.