Today is the 8th anniversary of that horrible morning of September 11th, when fanatical terrorists turned a beautiful blue sky Tuesday into the greatest American tragedy in history.

Windows On The World was the name of the great restaurant that occupied the 106th and 107th floors at the very top of the World Trade Center. windows on the world 

It offered majestic views of the New York City skyline and boasted one of the best wine lists in the city. Every month they sold 10,000 bottles of wine as accompaniments to their dinners. Attached to the main restaurant was a popular wine bar called Cellar in the Sky and at the time of the attack the restaurants $37,000,000 in annual revenues made it the top grossing restaurant in America.

It was home to Kevin Zraly, Wine Director for Windows On The World. Zraly conducted classes at the restaurant for those interested in learning more about wine.  He now publishes the immensley popular Windows On The World Complete Wine Course which has sold over 3 million copies.  Andrea Immer, noted wine critic and author had been a sommelier at Windows. Michael Skurnik, noted wine distributor, got his start in the business as a waiter at Windows. Following the tragedy Skurnik was instrumental in creating the Windows of Hope Family Relief Fund which benefits families of the workers who died that day.

On that fateful morning there were 78 employees serving breakfasts on the two floors to approximately 100 guests. When the plane struck the North Tower all of them perished in either the initial crash or within the hour when the tower crumbled. scan0064

As a wine blogger I wanted to use this day to remember those who perished not just in the restaurant but in both towers, at the Pentagon and in western Pennsylvania. My thoughts and prayers are with their families as we remember.


  1. The thing that amazes me most about this blog is that, though Frank and I have been close friends for many years, even I am amazed at the depth and breadth of his knowledge and expertise.

    Frank, you missed your calling!

    Keep up the good work and one day even I may be capable of intelligently discussing the wines of the world!

    • Gerry, it took you longer than I thought to write this “glowing tribute” that I paid you twenty bucks to write. Reading it now though, it was worth the wait and the money. I couldn’t have written it any better if I did it myself. Thank you. That was money well spent!

  2. Frank,

    I don’t know how you came across the story of Kevin Zraly but it puts another name to the horrible events of that day. Thanks, for devoting part of your blog to helping me to never forget.


  3. Mr. Willkie Says:

    I had Brunch at the WTC, I believe it was October 27, 1973 or 74, I don’t recall much about it anymore. I also, had dinner at the WTC around New Years of 1983. as fair as going to the Top of the WTC, well it had to been, in the late 90’s. so that being said, that is all I recall.

  4. Windows on the world looked like a really classy and luxurious restaurant,had the WTC still existed…it would have been so nice to visit that restaurant.

    God rest the souls of all the victims of 9/11.

  5. I am not sure if you can help but I’ll ask. Has there been a scholarship fund set up for children of Windows on the World family members (employees) who perished on that tragic day?
    If not Let’s set one up. Would love to help.
    Would be an awesome thing to present them with on the 10th Anniversary of 9/11.

    Matthew Hunt
    A Rose of Thanks

    • ballymote Says:


      That’s a wonderful gesture and I really can’t say for sure that there is such a fund. I would say, however, that I am fairly certain that in the aftermath of the tragedy there were all kinds of arrangements made to take care of the families of those who suffered the ultimate loss on that day. The funds set up by our government and private donations to the families most likely assure that the children will be taken care of for the rest of their lives. Naturally, nothing can take the place of the lost loved one but I believe every attempt was made to not have financial burdens be an additional concern.


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