Margaritas and mojitos usually come to mind first, but wine is every bit a part of the laid-back lifestyle that defines Key West. Sure, it is effortless to wander into any bar on Duval Street and order up a cold beer or the mixed concoction of your choice – and, hey, why not? However, it is also almost as easy to find a great glass or bottle (or 2) of wine to suit your whims or to compliment the shrimp, pasta, or even steak on your plate.
Key West Tourism
Key West may have a heavy tourist-like veneer at first glance, but local residents and restaurateurs alike know that many people are seeking exciting food and wine encounters to intermingle with the Sloppy Joe’s bar experience. One can easily spend a week in Key West and have a different fine dining experience every day. Various restaurants claim local titles such as “largest wine list” or “best Italian wine list” and generally do live-up to those claims.
The Wine Bar
For an even more wine-focused experience, the Grand Vin wine bar on Duval Street features a broad selection of wines from around the world served in a very relaxing and unpretentious atmosphere (it is, after all, in Key West). A family-owned and operated business for over a decade, it combines a wine shop with a small tasting room offering wines by the glass, bottle, and flight.
Dan, the patriarchal proprietor, sommelier, and world traveler, can sometimes be found pouring and holding court with the local regulars and travelers who happen by. In a town where relaxing to the point where one’s hunger more readily tracks time rather than a wristwatch, time spent at Grand Vin is anything but wasted.