A semi-regular column in which we nose our way into the minds and kitchens of Finger Lakes foodies.
Dewi Rainey is the owner of Red Feet Wine Market and Spirit Provisions, an international boutique wine shop across from the Ithaca Farmer’s Market. Currently in its ninth year, Red Feet prides itself on warm, educated, high-touch service and presenting a rotating selection of delicious, terroir-driven wines. Before opening the wine store, Dewi and her former partner opened up Maxie’s Supper Club and Oyster Bar in Ithaca’s West End where she and her team served up Southern flavors and high-energy fun before focusing on her love of wine.
Edible Finger Lakes: What is the most interesting thing you always keep in your fridge?
Dewi Rainey: An incredible amount of meat is in my freezer. Between meat from the Piggery, Autumn’s Harvest and Schrader Farms Meat Market, my venison and pheasant-hunting husband, and Wild for Salmon deliveries, we can reach into one of our cold boxes and pick out dinner pretty easily.
EFL: What’s the last meal you cooked for yourself?
DR: Spinach and mushroom lasagne with cream sauce. That was the rare meat-free meal for the week.
EFL: What’s the one kitchen tool you couldn’t live without?
DR: My olive-wood mortar and pestle from Provence. I use it to pound garlic and salt together every day when I make one of my two favorite salad dressings. I also pulverize anchovies in it when making Caesar dressing.
EFL: What was the first Finger Lakes wine/beer/spirit you ever tasted?
DR: The first ever was probably a microbrew from the Chapter House in 1990 when I came for a visit.
EFL: If you could add one item to the Finger Lakes food shed that isn’t already there, what would it be?
DR: I just really wish that we used local ingredients in school more and had more flavorful, interesting house-made food for children to eat.
EFL: What does it mean to you to be a part of the Finger Lakes foodshed?
DR: I am only a small piece of string in the FLX wineshed. We curate some of the special wines we find and enjoy sharing their stories with clients, so we can present the Finger Lakes at its best. Other than that, I love being a buyer of all things local and it feels great to support all the growers and farmers, so they can continue their important work. It’s been delightful to see new artisans hit the market in the last 10 years. I want to be sure that continues!
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