Wood floors, exposed brick, salumi, cheese and the echoes of clinking crystal stemware, the Boulder wine scene is the cure for the Colorado wine enthusiast who may be seeking an alternative to the wonderful and plentiful craft brew scene.
The smashed grape elixir, in its many manifestations, can be found in, around and off the palisade that is Pearl Street. Whether seeking to sit and geek out with a knowledgeable, courteous and friendly bartender or grab a to-go version for imbibing at home, Boulder has what you desire. A few of these gems exist all within walking distance of each other, and whether it’s a snowy winter afternoon or one of the perpetual 300 sunny days, Boulder doesn’t disappoint.
Begin your quest towards the west just off Pearl at PMG. A European experience with an eclectic by-the-glass offering and beautifully sized, crafted and prepared plates. Owner Emily Gold has created this little gem based partially from her experience living in Burgundy, France. Together with Head Chef Salvatore Proia, this off-the-beaten-path establishment on 10th just off Pearl will amuse your bouche and get things started. Be sure to go back for dinner, eat at the bar, and enjoy pleasant banter with James, your bar-keep and friendly, knowledgeable soul.
Heading east, share a veggie antipasti plate at The Kitchen Next Door, one of Kimbal Musk’s classic creations that attracts the younger foodies of Boulder. Have a glass of wine on tap; fresh and delicious varietals from a spout. No, it’s not the box in your grandparents’ fridge, but one of the newest ways to experience the nectar of the grape. Wine is pleasantly preserved in kegs, maintaining a low oxidation environment.
Eastward we go to this wine enthusiast’s favorite place to experience wine: Pizzeria Locale. If you go on a Saturday or Sunday, sit with Alex at the bar. You’ll feel like a regular after your first visit and find a new home next to the beautiful Prosciutto slicer, as it carves thin, delicate slices of heaven. Perhaps even top things off with a cleansing digestivo in an herbaceous Amari. Alex will help you choose from an enlightening selection.
Slightly more East, complete your trek by sipping an espresso and taking home a bottle from Cured’s wine room. You will float past an array of cheese, cured meats, olives and other tantalizing entities, on your way to a lovely wine closet, organized with categorical labels such as: “Big+Juicy”, “Quirky”, and “Zippy”. There’s a wine (or two, or three…) for every discerning palate. Or grab a cold can (yes, I said “can”) of wine by The Infinite Monkey Theorem – Denver’s premier and bleeding edge winery. Cured’s husband and wife owners Will and Coral Frischkorn have enough energy to rival a nuclear power plant, and together have created their own wine, salumi, cheese and coffee (Boxcar roasters) culture on East Pearl.
After wine crawling, consider one of the Dash, Hop, Skip, Jump, Bolt or Bound RTD bus options, hail a cab, or take advantage of an Uber ride home to transport you and your fellow wine enthusiasts safely.
This guest post was written by David Smith. A New England native, David loves how wine brings people together and will take any opportunity to “wine geek” with anyone, professional or enthusiast, sharing the same passion. The previous owner of Your Place or Vine, a Longmont wine bar, David can be found cycling the roads of Northwest Boulder County, in between developing software for “Wineclubz.com” from his home (and the occasional coffee shop), daydreaming of cycling through Europe, and dabbling in song writing on his Taylor acoustic guitar.