Saturday, October 11, 2014

Extra-Ordinaire Wine Bar

Ordinaire, a wine shop and wine bar in the Grand-Lake neighborhood of Oakland, CA.

By-the-glass wines on the board above the counter. I walked in and ordered a glass of Angiolino Maule's Bianco, instead, Bradford, the patron, treated me and my wife to a lovely glass of Bulles de Comptoir No 2 Extra Brut from Charles Dufour. I don't sell it, unfortunately. A Champagne brought in by Return to Terroir.

Bistro Ordinaire opens Thursday-Saturday. I made friends with the chef recently, Josh Eubank, a young guy with a sharp palate and keen eye for brilliant wines. I'm looking forward to learning from him more. Meanwhile, his cooking is a pleasure. You can't go wrong with anything on the compact menu, as I had everything except for the steak. My favorite this evening was the Stuffed Squid with Romesco.

One of Josh's selections, a 2013 Chenas from Julien Guillot, who's based in the Macon. Very juicy and showing well this evening. I'm not sure if it was made in the traditional Beaujolais way, as it tasted more Maconnais to me.

I grabbed a couple of bottles from my pantry before I headed to Ordinaire. One was this 2012 Le Raisin & L'ange Fable made by Gilles Azzoni in the Ardeche. Mainly Syrah, with some Grenache, maybe other grapes, too. Quite different from a Northern Rhone red; lighter, gentler, softer.

The second bottle I brought is a new arrival at the store, supplied by Fifi. The 2012 Les Vignes Herbel Alfred & Leon is Cabernet Franc from Anjou made by a young couple. Organically farmed with applied biodynamic methods. They took over the house of Jo Pithon. Excellent depth.

Ordinaire offers the Bay Area's best selection of reasonably priced vins naturels (except for Vineyard Gate, of course!) and with Josh's food--at prices that don't break $15 for appetizers and $20 for mains--the place can't be beat for a night out on a tight budget.

Ordinaire Wine Shop & Wine Bar
3354 Grand Avenue
Oakland, CA

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