Nicholas Harary is a Chef, Sommelier, Restaurateur and Entrepreneur.  His Restaurant Nicholas, located in Red Bank, is one of top eateries in the state, if not the country.  Restaurant Nicholas is truly a fine dining experience, with a kitchen that has been described as a “laboratory,” it has been our go-to special occasion restaurant for years. If you haven’t been, I suggest you find a special occasion – Anniversary, Birthday, Groundhog Day, Tuesday, whatever – and go.

Nicolas started selling wine directly to the public in the past few years, but he did not set up a traditional storefront. Instead, several times a month he sends out an e-mail blast with a featured wine that you can order online. Once you place your order, you can pick up the wine at the restaurant or have it shipped to your house on Nicholas’ special temperature-controlled truck.

Each e-mail blast contains a story about Nicholas’ personal experience with the wine, the vineyard and the wine maker, often involving food and a personal anecdote. I am uncertain how he does this – he clearly travels often, but if you go to Restaurant Nicholas he is always there. In addition to food and wine, Nicholas appears to have also conquered time and space. Trippy.

Miss Karen is fond of red wines, particularly the light-bodied Pinot Noir varietal. On occasion I will pick up a bottle, recommended by the store manager or by a shelf tag (91 Points from Booze Quarterly!) for her to try. Although she has yet to comically spew the first sip all over the kitchen, the result is often a polite, “Well, at least this one didn’t have grape seeds in it.”

But when Nicholas features a Pinot Noir, Miss Karen’s response is always positive. Now, it is possible that I could have randomly picked up one of Nicholas’ featured wines at the local spirit shoppe, but I doubt I would get the same response. Why?


Everything Nicholas does is meticulous and of the highest quality. Meal by meal, sip by sip, blog by blog, he has built trust with his customers, many of whom are not only “pleased” or “satisfied”, but are raving fans. A tribe.

So what are you doing to build trust? To build your tribe?

– Bob Gagliano

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