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Restaurants & Bars 1

Vin Room

ureviewcalgary | Jan 7, 2009 06:56 PM

It’s not like I needed to consume more food or booze after the holiday season…but the prospect of 64 wines by the glass was just too good to pass up at Vin Room (2310-4th St. SW). Located directly across the street from her pals at Bin 905, sommelier Karen Kho has hit a homerun with the wine list. Put simply, I love this place.

Choose a 2 oz. pour…maybe 6 oz….or a lucky 13 oz. or damn the torpedoes and spring for a bottle. I’m sprung by the layout of the wine menu and then there’s the wines themselves…brilliant selections across the board. I sampled Chasseur Pinot Noir…Boglietti Barbera...Quintarelli Primofiore…Oliverhill Shiraz…and Bogle Phantom Petit Sirah/Zinfandel. So many boutique wines are on this menu I felt like a mouse trapped in a grain elevator…more…more…more!

It was a cold, windy Saturday and we could have easily have spent 5 or 6 hours sampling away, and that was just on the reds. The beauty of a 2 oz. pour is being able to try just about everything you like or have been too cheap to buy yourself a bottle of (in my case that bottle is the Quintarelli) without getting completely pickled. This is an outstanding list and though it’s a cliché, it offers something for everyone at every budget.

The down side to getting lost in this list is how much you’ll spend on those 2 oz. pours ($10.75 for the Quintarelli) but it’s still better than spending your coin on a whole bottle at retail and not liking it. I’ll pay the resto markup to sample anytime. It can add up quickly but represents an unparalleled tasting opportunity in Calgary, so for me it’s worth it.

Given that it was late afternoon I was only able to try a few lunch menu items but the Short Rib Shepards pie ($22) was perfect given the weather. The build-your-own Charcuterie Plate (items charged in 30 gram increments) was a big hit as well (their homemade horseradish mustard is a toe curler). We also ordered a shrimp cocktail which seemed a bit out of place on the menu but the shrimp were fine and the house made cocktail sauce was nice and zippy. Everything was hot, fresh, and tasty.

I could go on and try to describe the make up of Vin Room, but you have to see it to appreciate it. It’s cozy, colorful, and has some great furniture. You’ll need to check out the state of the art wine preservation system that allows them to serve all that great juice too. Very impressive overall, it’s clear they spent some bucks and if you’re a cork dork like me you’ll love it. Can’t wait to go back for dinner!

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