Many wine drinkers have a handful of favorite go-to bottles that they keep in stock – big-name labels that are easy to find at most retailers or that can be ordered by the case online.
But even the most pleasing vintage can grow boring with repetition. This is when a trip to the local wine shop is in order. Rather than big-box chain retailers that carry a predictable stock, the best wine shops typically carry a unique selection of exciting or unknown labels. They are the perfect places to explore new wines and get recommendations from the experts. (Just for starters, here are 20 black-owned wineries you should know.)
To determine the best wine shop in every state, 24/7 Tempo exercised editorial discretion after reviewing listings from a variety of sources including Wine Enthusiast, Punch, Food & Wine, Imbibe, Gayot, and International Wine Review, as well as numerous local and regional sites and reviews by Yelp users.
Most are independently owned, while a few are small chains and one – the shop in Utah – is state-owned. No matter the business model, a common thread that these outlets share is excellent customer service. Sometimes run by sommeliers, and always staffed by knowledgeable wine enthusiasts, the best wine shops in America are known for their friendly salesperson-advisors who will take the time to find out which wines you prefer and recommend new bottles that you are bound to enjoy – and sometimes source rarities for you.
Some feature a vast selection of Old World wines, while others offer a global variety; many specialize in wines from small family producers or biodynamic and organic vineyards. Most offer wine tastings, monthly clubs, and special events, and nearly all provide online ordering for pickup, local delivery or mailing. A few even serve as wine bars, where you can relax with a glass and a cheese plate. (Here are the best wine bars in America.)
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