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Sommeliers of the Year

Where to Drink Wine in Seattle

Where to Drink Wine in Seattle

Canlis in Seattle Photo © Brian Canlis

Master sommelier Chris Tanghe, wine director of Aragona in Seattle, is one of F&W’s supertalented 2014 Sommeliers of the Year. Here, his top 10 places to drink wine in his city.

1. Vif
This place was opened last year by a local chef and former Louis/Dressner [a wine importing company] employee. It’s in Fremont, in this rad old doughnut shop that has amazing windows. It serves delicious food, coffee and wine and has a retail shop, too. The focus is on natural wine, but the reason I love going there is it’s a perfect place to chill, work or read a book on a sunny day, while having all of my favorite things at my fingertips. 4401 Fremont Ave. N.; 206-557-7357; vifseattle.com

2. Picnic
This is the best shop in Seattle for finding handcrafted edible goodies, from chocolate to cheese to honey to salt. It has a great deli and an awesome by-the-glass program—perfect for lunch. Every Thursday it hosts a themed wine tasting, which is fun, too. 6801 Greenwood Ave. N.; 206-453-5867; picnicseattle.com

3. Bar Ferd’nand
This is a hybrid bar and retail shop in the Melrose Building on Capitol Hill. It has a really eclectic selection of wines, but it’s still approachable, thanks to sommelier Marc Papineau. The glass program is small but every selection is appropriate for an afternoon glass with some sardines. 1531 Melrose Ave.; 206-623-5882; ferdinandthebar.com

4. McCarthy & Schiering
This is the sommelier’s go-to shop in the city. Owner Dan McCarthy is a legend here and he’s a blast to taste with. 2401B Queen Anne Ave. N.; 206-282-8500; mccarthyandschiering.com

5. Spanish Table
Since I’ve been diving into Spain while working on Aragona, I’ve come to really appreciate this spot. They have a great selection of sherries, and import all sorts of Spanish things that you can’t find anywhere else. 1426 Western Ave.; 206-682-2827; spanishtable.com

6. Barnacle
This charming spot is Renee Erickson’s latest venture and it’s my favorite of all of her spaces. It’s tiny and has no windows but feels so cozy and the food is so interesting. Last time I was there, my wife and I ate the whole menu and drank some bomb Corsican wine that was perfect with the Mediterranean food. 4743 Ballard Ave. NW; 206-706-3379; thebarnaclebar.com

7. Le Caviste
This is a new little wine bar in downtown Seattle owned by a longtime Seattle restaurant personality, David Butler. He has great taste and it’s a fun industry hangout. I don’t think any of the glasses eclipse $12, and he has a delicious cheese and charcuterie selection. I always run into someone I know here—there’s a great sense of community surrounding the place. 1919 Seventh Ave.; 206-728-2657; lecavisteseattle.com

8. Essex
This is the bar next door to Delancey, of Molly Wizenberg fame. The build out was really well done and the cocktails are innovative and delicious. They make their own Campari and Fernet and the wine list well chosen. It’s off the beaten path for me, but it’s always a treat to go. 1421 NW 70th St.; 206-724-0471; essexbarseattle.com

9. Mashiko
I go here for amazing sushi and sake. This place was one of the first in the country to feature only sustainable fish on the menu. The sake list is probably the most extensive in Seattle. Clams cooked in uni butter with a cool and clean junmai are stunning. 4725 California Ave. SW; 206-935-4339; sushiwhore.com

10. Canlis bar
It’s hard to beat the luxury of the Canlis bar. Between the view, the piano and the excellent cocktails, you can’t help but feel like a rock star here. My wife and I drop in on a regular basis. 2576 Aurora Ave. N.; 206-283-3313; canlis.com

Related: Chris Tanghe's Life Story in 3 Wines
Chris Tanghe on What to Drink at Seattle's Aragona
Seattle Travel Guide

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