Stage Left Exterior
Private Rooms
Old Vines Wine Shop
Gift Certificates
Wine Tastings and Other Events
Recipe of the Month
Who We Are
Contact Us/Email List
Hours and Directions
Stage Left Reservations

About Our Wine Dinners

Our guest speakers all have a direct hand in the wine-making process. We only invite the owner, winemaker, or general manager to speak to us, never a salesman or the regional sales manager of a wholesale company etc., etc.

Not that there aren't some great people in that end of the business. We just like to use our long-standing relationships to bring you some insight right from the source. We are honored that these folks think so much of us as to make us a premier venue for this sort of thing.

Wine is about people. Wine is about dining. Wine is food.

Wine is about a common experience.

We hope that you can join us for some of these uncommon common experiences.

Get the most up-to-date information on our upcoming events by joining the Stage Left/Old Vines mailing list.

And don't forget--there are more great events scheduled at our other restaurant, Catherine Lombardi.

Upcoming Events

[Except where noted, prices are per person and do not include tax or service.]

Tha Stage Left Wine Dinner Club: Get 20% off all wine purchases in both restaurants for the entire next calendar year! Just come to six wine dinners in a calendar year and you're automatically a member.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Pre-Theater Menu at Stage Left (Quite the Bargain!)

  • Beginning Friday, March 13
  • Offered Every Night Until 6 PM Sharp
  • Just Show Your Tickets

It's been a while since we offered a specific pre-theater menu, so we thought it time to reintroduce one. This menu will be available to theater-goers alongside our regular menu until 6 PM. We would encourage you to check out the schedules at the George Street Playhouse and The State Theater for a whole slew of great shows heading to town.

View the menu

Call 732-828-4444. $39.00

Sunday, February 07, 2016

Jacqui Naylor at Catherine Lombardi (An Alternative to the Superbowl on Superbowl Sunday)

Sunday, February 7 at 7:15 PM
Dinner Before Brought to you by El Dorado Rum

El-dorado-01It was one of those lucky things. I happened to be in Madrid, and a friend invited me to tag along to dinner at the estate of The Marqués de Griñón, Don Carlos Falcó Fernandez de Córdova. It was a heady day that started with churros and coffee in the Puerta del Sol, and went on to include one of the best rejoneo bullfights I've ever seen, dinner with the Marqués, and chitchat with various other Spanish nobility. King Felipe, the crowned prince back then, had been a guest just the week before in the very room where I sat. My Spanish is far from perfect, but I was called upon to serve as a translator. I remember talking to a woman who was a cousin of both the King and Don Carlos. I translated a question from one of my companions which was something like, "Have you known Don Carlos long?" I remember her sly smile at our American ignorance when she answered, "Our families have been friends for more than 500 years." So much for my career in the diplomatic corps.

But the highlight of the day was when Don Carlos introduced Jacqui Naylor, whom he had engaged to sing for us after dinner. She was a rising star in the West Coast jazz scene and had flown all the way from San Francisco to sing for us. The Marqués arranged for one of the finest Flamenco guitarists in Toledo to accompany her. It was immediately apparent to all assembled that we were in the presence of a great talent. She broke my heart about seven times that night, as she sang in the "barn" of the estate, while we smoked Cuban cigars and drank very old Spanish brandy from Don Carlos' cellar. I have been a fan ever since.

Jacqui has gone on to achieve success and great critical acclaim

"Naylor remains one of the most superbly arresting vocalists around. " JazzTimes
"She excels as a sensitive song interpreter with unerring intonation. " DownBeat
“Naylor has a sumptuous voice and a knack for scratchiness.” Village Voice

Jacqui returns to Catherine Lombardi following sold-out tours in Italy, Germany and the United States. Naylor’s albums have made the “top-ten” lists of USA Today, Jazziz and The Washington Post and she is recognized for her wide vocal range and ability to mix and “smash” multiple genres and generations of music. At her concert, Naylor will perform music from her current album and revisit requested favorites from earlier releases.

She is currently touring supporting her 10th album. Her recordings are available throughout the United States, Europe and Asia and she tours regularly in these regions at esteemed venues and festivals, including Ronnie Scott's London, all Blue Note clubs worldwide, Birdland New York, San Francisco Jazz Center Auditorium, Monterey Jazz Festival, Jazz at Aspen-Snowmass and more.

On Sunday February 7, Jacqui will sing for us all in the lush red dining room of Catherine Lombardi. Jacqui's vocal stylings in our lush red dining room will transport you back to another era of Jazz and cocktails. With the fireplaces roaring and the church through the windows as a backdrop and our extraordinary cocktails and menu, you will feel like you are in the swankiest of supper clubs of a bygone era. Jacqui and her trio will perform at 7:15 in the dining room. We will seat for dinner from 4 PM until 6:15 so that you can enjoy dinner before the show. We will serve cocktails through the performance, many featuring the excellent El Dorado Rum.    

Tickets to see Jacqui are $39 with a 2-drink minimum (or equivalent).
With Dinner, tickets to the show are just $25!

To make a reservation and for tickets, please call 732-296-9463 or email


Call 732-828-4444. $25 with dinner; $39 with a 2-drink minimum (or equivalent)

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Dinner with Diego Cusumano


When Mark and I started in this business, almost 30 years ago now, we did not look for fine wine from Sicily. If it existed, it certainly was not available in the U.S. market. Now, it's a very exciting wine region indeed. The Cusumano winery was established in 2001, when brothers Alberto and Diego, took over the management of the company from their father, Francesco. The Cusumanos had sold grapes but had not made their own wine. With their intimate knowledge of the Sicilian terrain and the help of their very talented winemaker consultant Mario Ronco, the Cusumano brothers today own over 400 hectares (nearly 1,000 acres) of vineyards. What's striking is that they hold this vineyard across 7 sites throughout Sicily.

With one foot in the present and another in the past, Alberto and Diego Cusumano have created a beautiful modern winery (two actually) with a respect to Sicily's colorful history and terroir. They farm in the western part of Sicily and source grapes from various parts of the island. They work primarily with the traditional grapes of Sicily (Insolia, Nero D'avola, Grillo...) in the context of the different and dramatic terroir of various parts of this wildly diverse volcanic island. It's exciting to see the diverse range of their wines from their various holdings.


Today, Cusumano grapes come from these vineyards:

  • Ficuzza: 189 hectares, in Piana degli Albanesi in the province of Palermo
  • Presti e Pegni: 70 hectares, on the hills of Monreale
  • San Giacomo: 140 hectares, in Butera in the province of Caltanissetta
  • Milioto: 3 hectares, in Partinico in the procince of Palermo
  • Monte Pietroso: 30 hectares, in the territory of Monreale
  • Marchesa: 50 hectares in the territory of Monreale
  • Buonivini: 20 hectares, in the territory of Pachino

On Wednesday, February 10th, Diego Cusumano will be here and we'll be pouring his wines at dinner. These wines represent an incredible value and we want to bring them to you at an extrememly affordable price. Dinner with wine will be $99 per person plus tax and service.

Pre-Dinner Wine Tasting
6:30-7:15 PM

Etna Bianco “Alta Mora” 2014
Angimbe 2012 (Insola, Chardonnay)
Jale Chardonnay 2011
Etna Rosso “Alta Mora” 2013
Benuara 2013 (Nero di Avola, Syrah)

Cubia Insola 2011

7:15 PM

A Selection of Crudo
Grillo “Shamaris” 2013

Venison Pate American, Sous Vide Egg, Parmgianno-Reggiano Crisp, Bone Marrow Brioche
aka: Venison Egg and Cheese Sandwich
Sagana 2011
Nero di Avola

Roasted Duck Breast with Blackberry Ginger
Noa 2012
Nero di Avola, Cabernet, Merlot

Moscato dello Zucco 2009

Cashew Financier
With Rosemary and Honey Ice Cream

(Menu Substitutions Available with Advance Notice)


$99 per person
plus tax and service or 732-828-4444

Call 732-828-4444. $99.00

Get the most up-to-date information on our upcoming events by joining the Stage Left/Old Vines mailing list.

And don't forget--there are more great events scheduled at our other restaurant, Catherine Lombardi.

Dinner-Theater Package

Enjoy a night on the town with a great performance at The State Theater and a fabulous dinner at one of your favorite restaurants. Park once. We’ll pick up the tickets and have them waiting for you here. Dine before or after the show and it’s all for one very reasonable price.

View the Stage Left Menu
View the Catherine Lombardi Menu

Prices are per person plus tax, service and beverage. Please visit the State Theater's website for performance details.

Stage Left | 5 Livingston Avenue, New Brunswick, NJ 08901 | T: 732.828.4444
Menu | Hours and Directions | About Us | Contact Us | Mailing List
Reservations | Gift Certificates | Newsletter
Copyright 2000-2016 Stage Left Restaurant & Old Vines Wine Shop. All rights reserved.