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Au naturel vino, where art thou?
You either already love it, still have no idea what it actually is, or have decided it tastes like kombucha, but by now you’ve probably heard the buzzword “natural wine”.
If you’re still in the dark about what that even is, natural wine is wine made from organic or biodynamic vineyards with minimal intervention from additives like sulphites. This often leads to a more “funky” flavour profile, less headaches the next morning, and because the wine is usually unfiltered, it’s not weird to find pieces of grape floating around in your glass.
But although natural wine is starting to make its way onto more and more wine lists around the city, finding a glass of it still isn’t something that’s totally easy to do. That’s what we’re here for.
Juice Bar, the “Cinderella” counterpart to Birds and the Beets, comes to life at 6pm every Wednesday to Saturday as a natural wine bar before it closes down at the strike of midnight and morphs back into normal girl missing a slipper—we mean, a coffee shop—the next morning. Head to the counter in the Gastown space and chat to the knowledgeable staff about their constantly changing selection of local and international natural wine. 54 Alexander St, juicebaryvr.com
Burdock and Co have been making organic cool since 2013 with their farm-to-table food. But did you know that, apart from the odd exception, they also have an entirely natural wine list? Sit at the bar for vino-only or make a night of it by having their team pair your wine with their food. 2702 Main Street, burdockandco.com
If you think about it, The Magnet could kind of be considered a library, except for beer. We mean, there is a lot of beer to choose from and a giant ladder leaning against one of the walls. But what you might not know yet is that The Magnet also has natural wine (on tap!) Dare we suggest you pair a glass with their meat pie? 309 W Pender St, themagnet.ca
The staff at Grapes and Soda know a lot about cocktails and have a passion for local and organic ingredients. It’s definitely the kind of place you can spend hours chatting to your bartender about strawberry varieties or how to use kefir in a cocktail. But another good reason to come here, especially if you’re in the Kitsilano area, is that they also happen to serve a lot of natural wine. Pair a Pet-Nat with some of their tapas and voila! 1541 W 6th Ave, grapesandsoda.ca
Vini Volpe is another “Cinderella” concept, this time from Caffe La Tana—Commercial Drive’s new-ish Italian cafe from the same folks who run Savio Volpe. The wine bar is open Friday and Saturdays only, from 6:30pm and the concept makes a lot of sense when you consider it’s the perfect spot to grab a glass of wine while waiting for a table at Pepino’s, Savio Volpe’s other restaurant, right next door. They have a constantly changing variety of natural wine here, which you can pair with their cheese plates, cicchetti, or pasta. 635 Commercial Dr, instagram.com/vinivolpe/