10 Wine Restaurants for Rhône Fans

The renowned French region shines at these Wine Spectator Restaurant Award winners

10 Wine Restaurants for Rhône Fans
Discover a plethora of picks from top Rhône producers like E. Guigal at these star spots. (Beall & Thomas)
Sep 12, 2019

Filled with coveted appellations, from Côte-Rôtie to Châteauneuf-du-Pape, the Rhône Valley has long been among France’s top wine regions. These 10 Restaurant Award winners across the United States maintain the area’s honor with exceptional collections on their wine lists, covering a range of styles and price points.

These are just a few of our nearly 200 winners with standout Rhône sections. To check out more wine-and-food destinations around the world, see Wine Spectator’s nearly 3,800 Restaurant Award–winning picks, including the 100 Grand Award recipients worldwide that hold our highest honor.

Do you have a favorite you’d like to see on this list? Send your recommendations to restaurantawards@mshanken.com. We want to hear from you!


Blackberry Farm

1471 W. Millers Cove Road, Walland, Tenn.
Telephone (865) 974-8166
Website www.blackberryfarm.com
Open Lunch and dinner, daily
Grand Award

Blackberry Farm dish
Beall & Thomas
Blackberry Farm’s sophisticated American menu showcases produce grown on site.

Blackberry Farm has turned the Smoky Mountains town of Walland, Tenn., into a major wine-and-food destination. The resort features luxurious accommodations, a Grand Award–winning restaurant and a comprehensive farm that supplies the ingredients for chef Cassidee Dabney’s American menu. Though the Blackberry Farm property dates to the 1930s, the resort began building its wine collection 20 years ago, as its county was previously “dry.” Today, wine director Andy Chabot’s world-class program offers 9,000 labels with a whopping 155,000-bottle inventory. The picks will please fans of all wine regions, from California, France and Italy to Spain, Australia, Germany and beyond. The Rhône section is certainly a high point, with five pages of white wines and 14 pages of reds, and dozens of half-bottle options.


Eleven Madison Park

11 Madison Ave., New York, N.Y.
Telephone (212) 889-0905
Website www.elevenmadisonpark.com
Open Lunch, Friday to Sunday; dinner, daily
Grand Award

Eleven Madison Park dining room
Jake Chessum
Eleven Madison Park’s storied dining room underwent a major renovation in 2017.

New York dining icon Eleven Madison Park’s Grand Award–winning list is a treasure trove for wine lovers, excelling in numerous regions with France at its core. The Rhône is a top strength of wine director Cedric Nicaise’s program, complementing chef Daniel Humm’s famed French-inflected seasonal tasting menus that start at $195 at the bar. Show-stopping verticals include 14 vintages of Domaine Jamet Côte-Rôtie, 23 vintages of Jean-Louis Chave Hermitage, and 13 vintages of Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape, all going back to the mid-1980s. There are more than 560 selections from the region on the 4,900-label list, which also shines in Burgundy, California, Bordeaux, Italy, Germany, Champagne, Austria, Alsace and the Loire. Provenance and service are of the utmost importance at EMP, so though premier labels are pricy, you’ll know you’re experiencing them at their best.


The Pluckemin Inn

259 Route 206 S., Bedminster, N.J.
Telephone (908) 658-9292
Website www.pluckemininn.com
Open Lunch and dinner, Monday to Saturday
Grand Award

The Pluckemin Inn wine room
The Pluckemin Inn
Guests who dine in the Pluckemin Inn’s wine room are surrounded by some of the 40,000-bottle inventory.

The Pluckemin Inn is set in an 18th-century farmhouse that was renovated with the goal of making wine the literal and figurative focus of the restaurant. A three-story, glass-enclosed tower stores 10,000 of the Grand Award winner’s 40,000 bottles. Contrasting chef Kevin LaFemina’s locally sourced American menu, wine director Brian Hider’s selections span the globe, and the Rhône is one of numerous standout sections. Peruse more than 40 verticals from producers such as Domaine de la Janasse, Clos des Papes and Domaine de Marcoux. A good amount of bottlings from the region are offered in the $150 to $200 range on the list, which is moderately priced overall.


Tribeca Grill

375 Greenwich St., New York, N.Y.
Telephone (212) 941-3900
Website www.myriadrestaurantgroup.com
Open Lunch and dinner, daily
Grand Award

Tribeca Grill dining room
Noah Kalina
Tribeca Grill serves its Grand Award–winning wine list in an elegant dining room.

For a superior wine experience in lower Manhattan, head to Grand Award winner Tribeca Grill. Chef Brenton Lee's American steak-house menu features filet mignon with thick-cut rosemary potatoes and campanelle with a duck and pork Bolognese. Among the 2,300 wines to choose from, the Rhône stands out, starting with a full page of white wines anchored by an 11-vintage vertical of Jean-Louis Chave Hermitage White. The red Rhône collection features stunners like nine consecutive vintages of Thierry Allemand Cornas Chaillot and four different verticals from E. Guigal. There’s also a “Wines of the Century" page highlighting particularly celebrated bottlings and featuring the stellar E. Guigal Côte-Rôtie La Mouline 1989, among other classics. Wine director David Gordon’s program also shines in Burgundy, California, Italy, Germany and Bordeaux.


Wild Ginger

1401 Third Ave., Seattle, Wash.
Telephone (206) 623-4450
Website www.wildginger.net
Open Lunch and dinner, daily
Grand Award

Wild Ginger dining room
Sarah Flotard
Wild Ginger represents one of the more casual Grand Award–winning dining experiences.

Wild Ginger has mastered the notoriously tricky art of pairing wines with Asian cuisine. According to the wine team, German Rieslings and Rhône varieties are the best match for the bold, occasionally spicy dishes like twice-cooked duck with Sichuan peppercorn and seven-flavor beef. Enjoy under-$100 gems like Mas de Boislauzon Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2013, Jean-Luc Colombo Cornas Terres Brûlées 2012 and Domaine de la Charbonnière Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2013, or splurge on producers such as E. Guigal and Roger Sabon & Fils. Wine director Jason Smith recently took the reins from Martin Beally, now running the 1,700-label, Grand Award–winning program. For guests seeking to venture outside of France or Germany, the selections also stand out in Washington, California and Italy.


Absinthe Brasserie & Bar

398 Hayes St., San Francisco, Calif.
Telephone (415) 551-1590
Website www.absinthe.com
Open Lunch and dinner, daily
Best of Award of Excellence

Absinthe Brasserie & Bar exterior
Absinthe Brasserie & Bar
Choose from 2,300 wines at Absinthe Brasserie & Bar.

For over two decades, Absinthe Brasserie & Bar has been serving fine wine and French brasserie–inspired cuisine in San Francisco’s Hayes Valley neighborhood. The local mainstay has held a Restaurant Award since 1999 and now offers a 2,300-label wine list overseen by wine director Phillip Acquafresca. It’s strongest in France, especially Burgundy and the Rhône, where both the white and red sections are exceptionally solid. Among the 23 white wines from the Rhône is a nine-vintage vertical of Jean-Louis Chave Hermitage White; the reds include another lengthy vertical from the prized producer, plus verticals from A. Clape, Thierry Allemand, Château Rayas and more. Pair your selection with chef Ryan McIlwraith’s menu of raw-bar starters, classics like steak tartare and coq au vin, and entrées like potato-crusted salmon and local duck for two.


Glitretind Restaurant

Stein Eriksen Lodge, 7700 Stein Way, Park City, Utah
Telephone (435) 645-6455
Website www.steinlodge.com
Open Lunch and dinner, daily
Best of Award of Excellence

Glitretind Restaurant tomato salad
Glitretind Restaurant
The regional American dishes at Glitretind Restaurant share a sense of refinement.

In the luxurious mountainside resort of Stein Eriksen Lodge, Glitretind Restaurant serves chef Jon Miller’s regional American cuisine and an extensive, well-rounded wine list brimming with classics. Rhône is one of the program’s biggest strengths, along with other French regions of Burgundy, Bordeaux, and Champagne, as well as California, Italy and Oregon. You’ll find 11 white wines from the Rhône and around 65 reds, anchored by benchmark names. Over the past year, wine director Jim Dahlgren has added several verticals from the region, such as four splurge-worthy vintages of Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape Hommage à Jacques Perrin. The wine list’s 1,500 choices are supported by an 18,000-bottle inventory, some of which is displayed in a glass-enclosed cellar in the dining room.


The Krebs

53 W. Genesee St., Skaneateles, N.Y.
Telephone (315) 685-1800
Website www.thekrebs.com
Open Dinner, Wednesday to Sunday
Best of Award of Excellence

The Krebs exterior
The Krebs
The Krebs is set in the charming lakeside town of Skaneateles, N.Y.

Though it’s a historic restaurant founded in 1899, the Krebs has kept up with innovative, contemporary cuisine and a wine list that’s among the world’s best. Chef Patrick Leibacher's eclectic menu lists dishes like crispy duck wings, carrot bisque, cauliflower “steak” and pappardelle with hickory-braised strip loin. For the 1,500-label wine list, wine director Michael Lischak’s main focus in Burgundy, but the Rhône offerings also impress. Seek out well-priced gems like Le Vieux Donjon Châteauneuf-du-Pape 1998 and St.-Cosme Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2011. A reserve section at the end of the list includes coveted bottlings such as Domaine du Pégaü Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée da Capo 2000 and Jean-Louis Chave Ermitage Cathelin 2000.


Marseille

630 Ninth Ave., New York, N.Y.
Telephone (212) 333-2323
Website www.marseillenyc.com
Open Lunch and dinner, daily
Best of Award of Excellence

Marseille brings French elegance to Manhattan’s theater district. Rhône is the top strength of the 650-wine program, followed by Burgundy, California, Italy, Provence and Champagne. Wine director Aviram Turgeman offers substantial diversity, with Rhône labels ranging from under $50 to over $1,000, plus a few available in half-bottles. Savor the selections alongside chef Andy D'Amico’s menu, which mixes French staples such as croque madame, beef tartare and steak frites with Mediterranean dishes like fava hummus with olive tapenade and spicy cumin lamb with pomegranate. The Marseille team is behind seven additional Restaurant Award winners in the city, including Grand Award winner Nice Matin.


Michael Mina

252 California St., San Francisco, Calif.
Telephone (415) 397-9222
Website www.michaelmina.net
Open Lunch and dinner, daily
Best of Award of Excellence

Michael Mina dining room
Mina Group
Chef Michael Mina’s San Francisco restaurant is the crown jewel of his culinary empire.

Chef Michael Mina is known for spectacular wine-centric dining destinations, with 10 Best of Award of Excellence winners across the country. His eponymous San Francisco restaurant represents the flagship establishment of the Mina Group, as well as one of its largest wine programs. The California-leaning menu incorporates some Middle Eastern flavors that Mina says defined his childhood, with five courses for $165. Wine pairings are available for an additional $150, or an additional $300 for reserve pairings. Wine director Jeremy Shanker's 1,500-plus-selection list emphasizes France, rounded out by strengths in California and Italy. The expansive Rhône picks offer something for every taste and budget, and they’re also featured on the diverse, international list of wines by the glass.


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Restaurants Restaurant Awards Rhône Valley

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