Niki Nakazawa

Niki Nakazawa

Last September, Niki Nakazawa of Neta joined us for a Taste and Talk event around all things agave and Mezcal.

Working alongside artisanal growers in the Mexican region of Oaxaca, Nata Spirits is keeping alive a tradition dating back centuries, preserving local recipes that are passed down through generations.

We met up with Niki to talk about some memorable bottles, her favourite addresses in Paris and what she’s looking forward to drinking next.

Niki Nakazawa
Niki NakazawaNiki Nakazawa

1. You're handed a wine list, what do you do?

I flip to the back to see if they have any mezcal and then look at the whites from the Loire.

2. How do you know the wine you're drinking is good?

I know a wine is good when it brings me into presence.

3. What is something fascinating you’ve been told over lunch?

Of the 570 municipalities in Oaxaca state, 418 are governed by a system of “usos y costumbres” or Customary Law, which means that community leaders and municipal officials are locally appointed and not selected via political parties.

4. In whose company do you most enjoy drinking wine?

Dear friends, especially the ones that my friend Yana calls “moaners”

Niki NakazawaNiki Nakazawa

5. Can you describe your ideal combination of wine, music, and setting?

One of my favorite settings ever has been in the cave of my dear friends Yasmine and Brian in Paris, cross-legged on floor cushions, surrounded by friends, listening to something beautiful and mysterious.

6. What sort of food would you add to the equation?

Anchovies, Saint Marcelin, olives, cherries, almonds, chocolate, jalapeño Chips

7. What is the most memorable bottle of wine you’ve drank?

Patrick Deplats, Diane 2016

8. Where did you drink it?

In Albiez Montrond with my friends Justine Saint-Lo and Fleur Godart.

Niki NakazawaNiki Nakazawa

9. Is there a characteristic you look for in a wine and in a friend?

Transparency and complexity

10. What is your approach to drinking?

Don’t drink when you’re sad. Take disco naps

11. Do you apply this approach in other aspects of life?

I frequently take naps

12. What shall we open next?

The Vine Trail NETA release of 78 bottles of Ensamble Madrecuixe, Bicuixe, Barrilito from Aniceto García is an absolute treasure!

Niki NakazawaNiki Nakazawa

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