5 Pours to Know
From island wines to naturally sparkling, bubbly wines
1. Island Wines
Hailing from sunny isles like Sicily, Santorini, and the Canary Islands, these wines are popping up on store shelves and tasting room lists, broadening local palates. Taste these unique varieties at Vina Carta in Little Italy or The Rose in South Park.
"Island grapes have been grown low to the ground for thousands of years, since they are vulnerable to ocean wind. Island viticulture is as much a part of the wine’s history as the flavor." – Patrick Ballow, SD-based wine expert for Revel Wines
2. Glou Glou
These highly chuggable, unfussy, no-rules wines get their name from “glug glug,” the sound your throat makes when drinking rapidly. While these quaffers came out of Europe, locals like J.Brix have jumped on the bandwagon, making their own version of the young, refreshing wines that are meant to be drunk joyfully—and immediately.
Short for pétillant-naturel, or naturally sparkling, these light, bubbly wines ferment right in the bottle and have been dubbed “Champagne’s cool kid sister” by Bon Appétit. While these cloudy sippers with funky, earthy flavors are a throwback to early production methods, they’re all the rage at present-day parties and a new favorite of indie winemakers. Los Pilares, collaborator with Hillcrest’s Vinavanti Urban Winery, is one of the pioneers of pét-nat wines in California.
"The Los Pilares ‘LaDona’ pét-nat is so delicious! It is lightly sparkling, with clean acidity and moderate alcohol." – Tami Wong, sommelier, Mess Hall
The wines from this region go beyond the one-off, November Beaujolais Nouveau that’s dominated the limited knowledge of this wine. Sommeliers about town are predicting this will be the future trend, since there are so many beautiful gamay varietals to try.
Forget that sweet, box blush wine you might be confusing with elegant rosé. With this exquisite pink, Europe has been drinking away the afternoons for centuries.
“Everyone is into rosé. You can drink it 365 days of the year here. Our rosé tastings always sell out and we sold 50 to 60 cases at the last one. We can safely say it’s a hit.” – Cori Holsteder, level 2 certified sommelier and wine director at Village Vino