Thursday, December 25, 2014

Drink: Flights of fancy at Jet Wine Bar

"Distributors bring me the strangest things they have," brags Jill Weber, who began Jet Wine Bar as a sideline to her globe-hopping career as an archaeologist.

As a result, the sleek blue-tinted resin bar bending through this vest-pocket South Street space has become a destination for adventure drinkers who don't want to trade obscurity for good taste.

Brazilian bubbly? Try a surprising flute of Salton's almondy brut. How about a bone-dry Chilean white take on Pedro-Ximenez (Cucao PX) a grape better known in syrupy Spanish sherry?

There have been wines from Morocco and Lebanon, little-known French Negrette (Ce Vin), and intriguing reds from white-centric zones like Germany (Dornfelder from Guntrum) and Austria, such as this 2010 Krise Blaufränkish from Uwe Shiefer. A blue grape with the weight of pinot noir, but softer and duskier, it had the perfect fruit and spice for Jet's pulled pork in blackberry barbecue sauce.

All are reasonably priced, but the Tuesday special - a build-your-own flight of three for $10 - is triple the adventure.

- Craig LaBan

Schiefer Krise Blaufränkish 2010, $9, Jet Wine Bar, 1525 South St.; jetwinebar.com.

Craig LaBan Inquirer Restaurant Critic
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