Thursday, August 19, 2010

Marty's Hops & Vines

Last Friday night, I rounded up a friend and we went to Marty's Hops & Vines, a new wine and beer shop in College Hill. In addition to their selection of fine wines, craft and import beers, and gifts, Marty's has a bar and serves a selection of small plates. Marty's also features Wednesday night beer tastings, Friday night wine tastings, and live music.

The atmosphere inside the shop was warm, comfortable, and inviting, while the service was courteous, knowledgeable, and appropriately playful. It felt like the kind of place where you could relax for awhile, chat with the other patrons, laugh a little, learn a little, and maybe even become a regular.

My friend and I tasted some fabulous vino. My favorite was the Clos de Los Siete, an Argentinian blend of Malbec, Merlot, Syrah, and Cabernet Sauvignon.

 We also shared a couple of small plates.

Olive Tapenade

Dates with Mascarpone and Shaved Chocolate

The scratch-made tapenades were savory and salty. The dates, with their fluffy clouds of mascarpone filling, sweet and decadent.

When we left around 9, the bar was beginning to fill up and the live music was just getting started. We really enjoyed our experience at Marty's Hops & Vines, and I hope to visit again soon. I'd really love to check out a beer tasting next time!

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