Lettuce B Frank at 3 Brothers Winery
I’m always looking for opportunities to go out to food related events for extra website content and to have the chance to be more engaged in the food community around the Rochester area. Along those lines, Dave Potwin from Lettuce B Frank and I were chatting a few weeks ago at the Greentopia Food Truck Rodeo about some of his upcoming events and he recommended that I come along on one of them. Dave and Joe Cipolla from Scratch Catering have been working together as a combined team recently and they were scheduled to spend an afternoon serving the customers of 3 Brothers Winery in Geneva, NY so I made the drive out to hang out and spend some time out in wine country.
I got out to 3 Brothers around 11am as Dave and Joe were getting set up for the lunch rush so I took a walk around the facility and grabbed some pictures. Since I don’t drink, I was just observing my surroundings so keep in mind that you won’t be reading any reviews of the various wines or beers except for the root beer. The winery is set up into four different themed areas to explore including a backwater themed Bagg Dare, a classier setting in Stony Lonesome, a barn themed Passion Feet and a brewery entitled War Horse. It sounds like a lot having written it out and it really is an impressive accomplishment to operate all four and have them all simultaneously filled with people. My personal favorite was the more traditional setup at Stony Lonesome that offered three sizable tasting areas with a classic winery feel to it and some great views of the vines from the back porch. The other buildings were perfectly acceptable and well stocked with different labels of wines and similarly packed to Stony Lonesome throughout the entire time I was there.
The other standout for me was the brewery side of their operation that seemed to have a decent selection of craft beers on tap as well as root beer which was a good surprise for me. I’m usually left with very few options and many times they are treated as an afterthought but in their case they make their own and were nice enough to toss me a sample to try out. There was a nice wintergreen taste on the front end and a strong licorice taste on the back end that dominated most of the flavor profile. I wouldn’t call it unpleasant, but those that dislike that particular flavor would be best served by avoiding this brew. The sweetness was about average and would be a good drink along with food.
Lettuce B Frank was set up just outside of Stony Lonesome and they had a solid and hearty menu to offer the hordes of wine tasters including a white bean cassoulet with either pork or shrimp and a burger made of either beef or carrot. I was hungry after walking between the different buildings and the cassoulet was my ticket to satisfaction. I went with the version topped with slow roasted pork shoulder and I was rewarded with large chunks of tender and full flavored meat over the white bean base. The cassoulet had highlights of smoked bacon, carrots and kale in the salty broth and the fresh cabbage, parsley and popcorn shoots did a good job of cutting through the richness. I especially liked the popcorn shoots which I had never tried before. The milky raw corn flavor and bitter finish was a good choice and one I’ll be looking for in the future for my own cooking. The dish left me satiated like only good comfort food can and it is a great selection for the fall season.
Make sure to check the Lettuce B Frank Facebook page for their schedule in the upcoming weeks and they will be making a return trip out to 3 Brothers the weekend of October 19th. It’s a short drive from Rochester and you can check out the changing/changed leaves after grabbing some great lunch from one of Rochester’s premier portable food operations!