When it comes to upping your wine game, the best way to know your picpoul from your pinot is by tasting. From handpicked, top somm lists, to Guinness award winning wine keeping systems, these are the best places in Philadelphia where you can increase your knowledge of all things wine in a very hands (on glass) way.
Cellar Tasting at the Rittenhouse Hotel
Rittenhouse Hotel sommelier Justin Timsit is raiding the hotel’s sizable cellars for the first this year in a series of annual tastings. From 2-5 PM on Sunday, January 31, Timsit will pop once in a lifetime bottles like a Beaulieu cabs dating back to 1973, grand cru Bâtard-Montrachet and López de Heredia Rioja — a big fave for those in the know. Tickets are $55 and are pretty much guaranteed to sell out, so get ‘em right here.
210 West Rittenhouse Square; 215-546-9000
Cellar Sundays at Good King Tavern
This Bella Vista bistro has a fabulous, but low key, wine list with all sorts of gems available by the glass, bottle and sharable pichet. On Sundays, however, the Good King’s wine offerings get even better with select bottles from the old world. Plus, the organically produced reserve list is offered at half price.
614 S. Seventh St.; 215-625-3700
Sunday School at Tria
With half priced glasses of wine, beer and a cheese of the day, Sunday has never been this fun. Tria has four fermentation focused bars (Fitler Square location pictured above) with offerings vary on a weekly basis — but you can be sure that the staff is always more than happy to drop some knowledge about what’s going into your glass. Tria updates their site regularly, so be sure to check and see what’s on the menu for this and all upcoming Sundays.
Flights at Panorama
Located within a quaint hotel, Panaroama's Cruvinet wine storage system allows the restaurant (pictured at top) to serve more than 120 wines by the glass, making this Old City spot a truly exceptional place to learn about wine. Panorama offers all sorts of intriguing flight options (think themes of biodynamic beauties, sophisticated sparklers and Piedmontese power), all of which are $5 off during weekday happy hour from 5 to 7 PM.
14 N. Front St.; 215-922-7800
Late Night Happy Hour at a.bar
With a passion for natural wines, Mariel Wega, the sommelier at this Rittenhouse corner bar, has put together a long list of bottles rarely seen elsewhere in the city — plus a weeknight happy hour from 10 PM to midnight featuring a selection of rare pours from the list. Look out for horizon expanding pours like limnio, a Greek red varietal and a bright passerina from Le Marche in Italy.
135 S. 18th St.; 215-825-7030