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by ARLnow.com — March 11, 2016 at 11:35 am 0

Grateful Red, a quirky local wine shop in Clarendon, has closed its doors after almost four years in business.

The store opened in 2012, with a wine selection focused on independent and local wine producers, along beer, gifts and gourmet items. It was located at 2727 Wilson Blvd, next to Revolution Cycles — and across the street from Whole Foods and its large beer and wine selection.

A sign in the window says the space is for lease. So far, there’s no word on why the store closed. The storefront next to Grateful Red — formerly B&C Jewelry — also remains available for lease.

Grateful Red’s Facebook page has not been updated since February. A Twitter post from Feb. 26 announced a storewide sale of up to 50 percent off.

The owners of Grateful Red also own nearby Screwtop Wine Bar, which remains open at 1025 N. Fillmore Street.

Update at 2:15 p.m. — Owner Wendy Buckley has shared an email she sent to customers last month.

Dear Wine & Craft Beer Lovers,

Grateful Red Wine and Gift Shop (brick and mortar) will be closing Sunday March 13th. We will continue to successfully operate a gift basket delivery and online business at GratefulRedWine.com.

This comes after a lot of soul searching within myself over the holidays on whether or not to renew our lease, and in the end I decided that the online and gift basket side of the business was the strongest and most worthwhile for us at the moment.

Current store employees will be absorbed into screwtop or website staff. Our last Beer & Wine Club pick up for Grateful Red will be held on Saturday March 5th. If you are a wine club member you may continue on with screwtop’s wine club, which is a wonderful club that features wines from all over the world. We will, however discontinue the beer club after March 5th.
If you have purchased or received a Grateful Red gift card, please try and use it before March 13th. Any gift card not used by the 13th, will of course be honored at screwtop. Please see the website on the back of your gift card to periodically check the balance, as these gift cards slowly lose value after long periods of time not used.

Thank you so much for all the love & support these last few years, and your continued support of screwtop.

If you have any questions you may reach me via email – [email protected]

If you know a business that might be a perfect fit for the space at 2727 Wilson, the broker in charge of re-leasing can be reached at [email protected]

I will also be looking for homes for some of the wine shelving and other fixtures, so shoot me an email if you have any interest. FREE to good home! :-)

Warmest Regards,
-Wendy Buckley, Owner

by ARLnow.com — February 23, 2016 at 12:30 pm 0

Arlington Agenda is a listing of interesting events for the week ahead in Arlington County. If you’d like to see your event featured, fill out the event submission form.

Also, be sure to check out our event calendar.

Wednesday

AFAC-Bar-Olympiucs-FlyerAFAC Bar Olympics
Spider Kelly’s (3181 Wilson Blvd)
Time: 7-9 p.m.

Join AFAC for a night of fun and fundraising. Two-person teams compete in six bar games in a tournament-style competition. Entry fee is $10 per person ($20 per team). Top five teams qualify for cash prizes or gift cards.

Thursday

Osteria da NinoWine Pairing Dinner*
Osteria da Nino (2900 S. Quincy Street)
Time: 6:30-11 p.m.

Join Nino for a Campania wine pairing dinner at Osteria da Nino in Shirlington. The event will feature five courses and five wines for only $60 per person, plus tax and gratuity. Reservations are required.

Saturday

Feel the Heritage posterFeel the Heritage Festival
Drew Community Center (3500 23rd Street S.)
Time: 1-6 p.m.

Celebrate Black History Month at the 24th annual Feel the Heritage Festival. This FREE event features live music and dance, a “Hall of History,” free children’s activities, delicious soul food and a great selection of vendors.

Sunday

Duck Donuts in the Lee-Harrison Shopping CenterPAL Block Party
Duck Donuts (2511 N. Harrison Street)
Time: 3 p.m.

A bike-centric event in a car-heavy spot. Take a couple seconds from a stressful day and chat with ambassadors from Arlington’s PAL (Predictable, Alert, Lawful) program. There will be chairs, hot cocoa and incense.

oscarsparty-2016-300And the Winner Is… Oscars Party
Arlington Cinema Drafthouse (2903 Columbia Pike)
Time: 7 p.m.

Watch the Oscars broadcast live on the big screen at the D.C. Film Society’s 24th annual party. There will be a predict the winners contest, trivia contests, giveaways and a silent auction. Tickets are $20.

by ARLnow.com — January 16, 2016 at 12:00 pm 0

Ladies of the Vine logo

(UPDATED: This event is cancelled due to the impending snowstorm.)

Arrowine (4508 Lee Highway) and Ladies of the Vine, a group of female wine importers, will be hosting a free tasting event next Sunday, Jan. 24.

From 1-4 p.m., there will be four separate tasting tables, with wines from all over the world including Portugal, South Africa, Germany, and California.

Ladies of the Vine are a group of importers, representing portfolios from around the world, who enjoy each other’s wines as much as each other’s company. They formed Ladies of the Vine to showcase all of their wines together, hosting events to give the attendees a greater experience and an around the world venture with their individual expertise.

Attendees will be able to purchase or order some of their favorites from the tasting at discounted prices.

RSVP for the event via Facebook.

The preceding was a sponsored article written by ARLnow.com for Arrowine.

by Jennifer Currier — January 6, 2016 at 4:30 pm 0

A Total Wine store is coming to Ballston.

The chain booze outlet, to be located at 800 N. Glebe Road near Mussel Bar, has applied for a Virginia ABC license to offer wine and beer for sale along with beer keg sales and delivery.

Though the Bethesda-based national retailer has locations in surrounding Alexandria, McLean, Fairfax and Springfield, this will be the first Total Wine location to open in Arlington.

A representative from the company — known as “America’s Wine Superstore” — confirmed the Glebe storefront is in the early stages of opening.

There appears to be no activity yet inside the space, and the representative could not provide an approximate date of when they hope to open the store.

Hat tip to ARLnow commenter Dean

WWBG: Wine Purchasing Guide

by ARLnow.com Sponsor — October 16, 2015 at 3:30 pm 0

Weekend Wine and Beer Guide logo

Editor’s Note: This biweekly column is sponsored by Dominion Wine and Beer (107 Rowell Court, Falls Church). This column is written by Dominion owner Arash Tafakor.

With the holiday season right around the corner wine consumption will definitely be on the rise.

For some people, buying a bottle of wine from a store with a large selection can be a daunting task. With so many different wines with different labels from various regions throughout the world, it’s difficult to know what wine to choose. Without going into grape specificities, I’m going to give you some tips on how to buy a perfect bottle of wine for any occasion.

What are you willing to spend?

This is always the first question we ask when assisting a customer buy a bottle of wine. These days you can find a nice bottle of wine in any price range depending on what kind of complexity of flavors you are looking for. We typically recommend three price ranges to our customers, under 10 dollars, 10-15 dollars or over 20 dollars.

As a consumer, you should be aware of your wine allowance before you walk into a store and stick to your budget. You do not want to go into a wine shop with a budget of 20 dollars and leave with a bottle that is 30-40 dollars. Even if the wine is great, you won’t be walking out happy and will not find the same enjoyment in the wine. You can find a fantastic wine under any budget for any occasion.

What are your tastes and preferences?

Next question we simply ask is, what kind of wine do you like? First time wine buyers usually reply with “Wine’s that tastes good.” This true for all us wine drinkers but figuring out the exact type you enjoy, paired with certain foods, will go a long way in creating a wonderful wine-drinking experience.

Simple questions to ask yourself in regards to your wine preferences include:

  • Do you prefer white wine or red wine?
  • Do you like dry or sweet?
  • Light, medium or full-bodied?

It is important to know your tastes and likes rather than a wine publications or wine merchant selling you wine. They may recommend a perfectly good wine that most people like, but that is not exactly your preference or taste.

(more…)

by ARLnow.com — October 9, 2015 at 11:25 am 0

Starbucks at 2690 Clarendon BlvdStarbucks applied this week for a liquor license at its Clarendon cafe.

The license, if approved, would allow the Starbucks at 2690 Clarendon Blvd to serve beer and wine.

The company had earlier applied for Virginia ABC permits at two South Arlington locations, as part of the “Starbucks Evenings” program it’s rolling out. All three permit applications are still pending.

Starbucks Evenings stores will serve beer, wine and a selection of small plates at night, in addition to the usual coffee, tea, pastries and breakfast foods.

by Heather Mongilio — October 5, 2015 at 4:45 pm 1,388 0

New Starbucks on Columbia Pike

Starbucks customers may be able to order a glass of wine with their Pumpkin Spice Lattes at two Arlington locations in the next few months.

Starbucks has filed liquor license applications for its new Penrose Square (2413 Columbia Pike) and Arlington Ridge Shopping Center (2925 S. Glebe Road) locations. If approved, the stores will be able to serve beer and wine, in addition to the coffee and tea drinks the company sells.

Starbucks is offering beer and wine at select stores as part of its new “Starbucks Evenings” service, which also includes small plates.

According to a sample menu, the coffee chain will sell various red, white and sparkling wines by the bottle and glass, as well as craft beers. Small plates include truffle mac and cheese, bacon-wrapped dates, chicken skewers and truffle popcorn. Menus vary by region.

License applications for the two stores are currently pending, according to the Virginia Department of Alcohol Beverage Control.

Wine and beer will come to the Long Branch Creek location in “probably a few months,” said a supervisor at the store but she could not provide any additional information. USA Today reported in August that Starbucks is launching Starbucks Evenings at more than 2,000 of its 12,000+ U.S. stores, with many opening by the end of the year.

A Starbucks spokesman stopped short of confirming that the two South Arlington stores will in fact be serving beer and wine in the near future.

“Just as each customer is unique, so are our stores and we consider a broad range of products and experiences for each neighborhood,” said the spokeswoman. “And, as you’ve probably seen, we’re in the very early stages of considering our stores at 2413 Columbia Pike and 2925 S. Glebe Road for the Evenings menu. It’s a long and thoughtful process and the permit filing is just one of many steps we take.”

by ARLnow.com Sponsor — June 26, 2015 at 3:35 pm 0

Weekend Wine and Beer Guide logo

Editor’s Note: This biweekly column is sponsored by Dominion Wine and Beer (107 Rowell Court, Falls Church). This column is written by Dominion owner Arash Tafakor.

In part one of our red wine blend write up I wrote about the history of the red wine blend market in the United States. Even though winemakers have been making red wine blends for centuries, a new trend of wines that market themselves as just red blends has emerged.

Old World (France, Spain, Italy, Germany) wines such as Bordeaux, Cotes Du Rhone and Rioja are blends, but are under strict regulation as to which grapes winemakers may blend with. New World (United States, Argentina, Chile, South Africa, New Zealand) wines do not have such strict regulation and allow winemakers to use any grape they please. This allows New World winemakers to make delicious red wine blends at a great value. Here are some outstanding red wine blends available at Dominion Wine and Beer.

ApolloOrin Swift Cellars Papillon 2012 Napa, California

Napa Valley’s 2012 growing season saw near perfect conditions. This incredible growing season made it easy for talented winemakers like David Swift Phinney, who founded Orin Swift Cellars, to make outstanding blends. Orin Swift Cellars is best known for the wine “The Prisoner” (which is no longer made by Orin Swift) a high-end blend you can find anywhere. Now Orin Swift Cellars makes a variety of blends sourced from all over the world.  The 2012 Papillon is definitely a step up from the original Prisoner.  A Bordeaux-style blend of Cabernet, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Malbec and Cabernet Franc, the 2012 Papillon delivers a delicious full-bodied blend.  Scoring 93 points from Robert Parker, you should grab this bottle while it lasts.

Coup de GraceCoup de Grâce Red Blend 2012 Lodi, California

Coup de Grâce has been a winner for us ever since we introduced it to our customers. A Zinfandel dominated blend, Coup de Grâce is made in a truly original California Red Blend style (Zinfandel driven). Other grapes used for Coup de Grâce blend are Petite Sirah, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc. Coup de Grâce is rich and full of character with blackberry, licorice, spice and earth notes intertwined with soft oak flavors.*

 

Wrangler redShannon Ridge Wrangler Red 2012 Lake County, California

Wrangler Red is perfect for wine lovers who enjoy wines such as Apothic Red and Ménage à Trois.
This value blend is silky smooth and tastes like a wine twice the price. A blend of mostly Zinfandel and Syrah, Wrangler Red is deep in color and consists of flavors of blackberry, cinnamon spice and sweet vanilla. A rich wine that finishes with soft silky tannins. Grapes used to produce Wrangler Red came from higher elevation vineyards of the up and coming appellation of Lake County California.

*winemaker’s notes

The views and opinions expressed in the column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ARLnow.com.

WWBG: Red Wine Blends, Part 1

by ARLnow.com Sponsor — June 12, 2015 at 2:45 pm 0

Weekend Wine and Beer Guide logo

Editor’s Note: This biweekly column is sponsored by Dominion Wine and Beer (107 Rowell Court, Falls Church). This column is written by Dominion owner Arash Tafakor.

A new market of red wine has emerged the past few years. Almost out of nowhere, California Red wine blends became one of the hottest wine categories. With brands like Apotic Red and Ménage A Trios’, wine consumers love the smooth easy drinking, slightly sweet taste of these red wines. Almost all big wineries have come out with a red blend the past few years as well. St. Francis, Bogle, Fetzer, Cupcake and Barefoot just to name a few.

But before these inexpensive red wine blends hit the market, red wine blends have been around for decades. France’s famed Bordeaux and Cote du Rhone regions are all blends. Wine makers in Bordeaux can use up to seven different grapes for the blend. Rhone wines can use numerous grapes in the blend with certain percentages of each grape.

The Prisoner red wine blendHigh end California wine such as Opus One and Verite are top-notch red blends. Most recently a small group of California wine makers started the Meritage Association in 1988. The group’s goal was to make a Bordeaux style blend with guidelines and laws as in France. Meritage was the entire craze in the 90’s but soon took a big decline. The group charges a licensing fee to winemakers that want to use the Meritage label and have strict guidelines on other winemaking procedures.

These laws and guidelines created by the Meritage Association made it easy for wine makers to simply make their own red blend using whatever grape they desire. In the United States the governing body of wine making and guidelines is The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. As you may assume, the ATF doesn’t have as strict wine making guidelines as, say, France.

These loose regulations in the United States winemaking industry give winemakers complete freedom to use any grape they can get their hands on. Though most inexpensive California blends are Zinfandel based, new red blends come out everyday with grapes you have never seen in a California wine. With good winemaking techniques, wine makers have catered perfectly to the American palate and made this category of wine here to stay.

Be sure to check out Part 2 next time. I will list some of my favorite non-French and non-Meritage blends from all over the world with price ranges that should fit any budget.

The views and opinions expressed in the column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ARLnow.com.

by Heather Mongilio — June 5, 2015 at 1:30 pm 0

Wine in the Water Park posterCrystal City will be combining wine with art tonight for the kickoff of its 2015 Wine in the Water Park events.

The events, which are free to attend, feature live music and, for paying customers, sips of various wine varietals.

“Expert noses from [Washington Wine Academy] help guests select and enjoy the perfect wine for an after work beverage to kick-off the weekend right amidst the calming sounds of falling water mixed with live music,” according to the Crystal City website.

This year, the event is being combined with ArtJamz, which offers aspiring artists paint and canvas so they can create their own paintings in a social setting.

Wine in the Waterpark and ArtJamz will run from 6:00-10:00 p.m. tonight and will take place every Friday in June at the Crystal City water park (1750 Crystal Drive).

On Wednesdays in June, from 5:00-8:00 p.m., Crystal City will hold Blues, Brews and Barks, featuring beer and live music in a dog-friendly setting. The event will take place at the 2121 Crystal Drive courtyard.

Attendees are encouraged to pick up food from local eateries before going to the park. Beverages will be available in the beer garden. Attendees can get two drink tickets for $5 if bought in advance.

Disclosure: Crystal City BID is an ARLnow.com advertiser

 

by Ethan Rothstein — March 30, 2015 at 3:30 pm 5,680 0

(Updated at 7:00 p.m.) The Curious Grape, the wine bar and shop in Shirlington, closed Saturday night, but a new restaurant will be taking its place shortly.

Coming in to the location on 2900 S. Quincy Street will be Osteria da Nino Cucina Italiana & Bar, an Italian restaurant that plans to start its soft opening on Thursday, its owners told ARLnow.com today.

The restaurant is being launched by a pair of couples and helmed by Italian chef Nino Pino, who has worked at a number of restaurants in Northern Virginia, including Palio Ristorante in Leesburg. Crews will be working around the clock until Thursday night, when Osteria da Nino hopes to get in a few practice runs before a planned Easter brunch on Sunday.

The turnaround might catch some by surprise — many restaurant openings take more than a year in Arlington. Even more so because The Curious Grape had been a Village at Shirlington staple for more than a decade.

“As most people know, running a restaurant is really a 24/7 commitment,” Curious Grape owner Suzanne McGrath said in an email. “Actively managing the restaurant has also diverted my efforts away from wine education, which is really my career focus. We have so appreciated all the support of our loyal customers and the wonderful people who enjoyed The Curious Grape.”

Osteria is looking for waitstaff, bussers and kitchen staff to join the team immediately, and is asking those interested to apply in person.

by Ethan Rothstein — February 19, 2015 at 3:50 pm 3,592 0

Beers in a refrigerator (Updated at 4:00 p.m.) An online service that would allow people to order beer and wine to their doorstep could launch next month in Arlington.

Ultra is already available in eight cities nationwide, including D.C., where it contracts with retailers to deliver beer, wine and liquor. While Virginia’s liquor laws restrict Ultra from selling spirits, Ultra CEO Aniket Shah says his company has reached an agreement with the state Alcoholic Beverage Control Board to deliver beer and wine.

We are looking at Arlington as our first city to expand in Virginia, based on demographics, income levels and awareness for new technologies,” Shah told ARLnow.com. “We are expecting the deliveries to start first-second week of March.”

Ultra users would go to the company’s website, enter their zip code, and a list of products they can order (beer, wine, soda and mixers), delivery minimum, hours and estimated delivery time. Customers can order on-demand, which takes no more than an hour, or for more than 30 days in advance, including requests like the wine be chilled. Customers’ IDs are checked when the driver makes the delivery.

“We received huge response from people in D.C. when we launched there and we wanted to expand to Virginia as soon as possible,” Shah said. “[Virginia ABC] were very open to understanding our process and providing guidelines within which we had to operate our service in Virginia. We finally received the approval and we are actively in contact with several retailers to accept deliveries in Arlington.”

Ultra, a New York City-based company, can only sell beer and wine from stores that have delivery permits in place to do so. Shah couldn’t disclose which retailers Ultra is negotiating with because of confidentiality agreements, he said.

Shah said Ultra is the first service of its kind in Virginia, but individual retailers are already able to delivery beer and wine as long as they have an ABC license. Some restaurants, like Lost Dog Cafe, deliver beer along with food.

Shah also said he plans on initiating negotiations with the ABC Board to deliver liquor straight from ABC stores, but it’s unclear how much traction those discussions will have.

File photo

by ARLnow.com — December 5, 2014 at 10:00 am 3,521 0

Police car lightsArlington County Police are trying to solve the case of the missing vino.

Cops say 100 bottles of wine were reported missing at a divorcing couple’s house in the Waycroft-Woodlawn neighborhood on Monday. The wine, worth about $5,000, disappeared at some point between September and November, said the female half of a couple.

“The male half denied any knowledge or involvement in the missing wine,” police said. “There were no signs of forced entry.”

From this week’s Arlington County crime report:

BURGLARY, 141201025, 4600 block of 13th St N, On 12/1/14 at 1242 hours, the female half of a divorcing couple told police she believed her estranged husband entered the marital home when she was not present and stole approximately 100 bottles of wine, valued at approximately $5000.00, sometime between 9/23/14 and 11/28/14. The male half denied any knowledge or involvement in the missing wine. There were no signs of forced entry.

The rest of the crime report, after the jump.

(more…)

by ARLnow.com — October 17, 2014 at 9:00 am 0

Sky over S. Walter Reed Drive near Shirlington (Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley)

Wardian Featured in Runners World — Prolific ultramarathon runner and Arlington resident Michael Wardian was the subject of a full-page spread in the latest Runners World magazine. Wardian, 40, holds the record for fastest marathon dressed as a superhero, fastest marathon with a stroller and fastest marathon on a treadmill. He was photographed on the Potomac Heritage Trail, where he regularly goes on morning runs with his puppy, Rosie. [PDF]

Arlington Wine Bars Make Top 100 — Arlington wine bars The Curious Grape and Grand Cru have been named to OpenTable’s list of the top 100 wine-centric restaurants in America. [OpenTable]

Candidates Question School Costs — School Board candidates Barbara Kanninen and Audrey Clement both said that there are ways to contain costs at Arlington Public Schools. Clement said the school system should consider increasing class sizes, while Kanninen said she was concerned about the cost of technology initiatives. [InsideNova]

GW’s Barcroft Park Field to Be Named — George Washington University will name the field its baseball team plays at Barcroft Park after a major donor. The field recently underwent a $3 million renovation. It will be named after Avram “Ave” Tucker, a former GW baseball player and the owner of a financial firm, who is making a $2 million donation to the school. The newly-christened “Tucker Field” will be dedicated in a ceremony Saturday morning. [George Washington University]

Orthopaedic Center to Open in Clarendon — The Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Center of Falls Church has announced that it has opened a second office, at 1307 N. Highland Street in Clarendon.

Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley

by Ethan Rothstein — October 8, 2014 at 3:30 pm 2,380 0

Workers and residents in Rosslyn will be able to sip some suds at a pop-up beer garden in a new public plaza this month.

On Friday, Oct. 24, from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m., Continental Pool Lounge will be hosting the beer garden in the new Plaza on 19th, a public space at the corner of 19th Street N. and Moore Street, behind the bus stop. The new plaza has tables, seating and a charging stations with plugs for iPhones, Androids and other devices.

The beer garden is Oktoberfest-themed, and the Continental will be pouring a selection of fall beers and serving up bratwursts. The event itself will be free to attend, but beer and brats will be available for purchase. There will also be live music to entertain those willing to brave the late-October chill.

Next weekend, on Saturday, Oct. 18, will be another booze-themed event: the Washington Wine Academy is partnering with the Rosslyn Business Improvement District to offer an event where guests can sample from 26 different wines and 26 different beers. The event, called “the A-Z of Wine and Beer,” will be offered in two time slots: 3:30-6:30 p.m. and 7:30-10:30 p.m. There will be beer and wine offered for every letter of the alphabet, such as a lambic, a Unibroue and a doppelbock, or an Orvieto, a Viognier and a Hondurrabi.

The event will be held at 1500 Wilson Blvd. Participants can purchase $36.50 tickets online for either the beer samplings or the wine samplings. The price may increase as the event draws closer. Hors d’oeuvres from some local restaurants will be served. Washington Wine Academy expects more than 1,000 people to attend.

Disclosure: Rosslyn BID is an ARLnow.com advertiser

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