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The Wine Find: A Neighborhood Market Surprise for Bargain Wine and Spirits

Posted By Karen Young On December 9, 2012 @ 11:03 pm In Bar/Pub/Taverns,Budget Dining,Cuisine,Eat,Featured,Grocery Markets,Lifestyle,Markets,My Daily Find,Other,Shop | No Comments

BY BARBARA BARRIELLE

(Editor’s Note:  This is the first in an ongoing column by Barbara Barrielle on wine and spirits that will take you all over the San Fernando Valley — and perhaps beyond. First stop — Studio City).

Bargains galore for wine and spirits at Village Market, located at Colfax and Moorpark. Photos: Barbara Barrielle

I had just returned from a trip to Peru the day before Black Friday,  so shopping held no appeal as I was wallowing in jet lag and mounds of laundry. But, since I am always up for a nice budget-conscious bottle of wine, I thought I’d check out what my local mini-market had on sale.

I headed to the Village Market at the corner of Colfax and Moorpark  in Studio City. I know it sounds strange to shop for wine at  a mini-market, but this is no ordinary neighborhood store as  half the space is  filled with hundreds of  bottles of wine and spirits at some incredible bargain prices.  There’s even  a walk in cooler.  I also love this shop because it  has easy parking , it’s family owned, plus gives me the ability to shop quickly and support a small business.

This is one of three long aisles of wine.

I settled on two different bottles of Blackstone Chardonnay. Blackstone is a mass producer of wines, but they do offer some quality, unique wines for just a few dollars more than the box-quality stuff.

The first, a 2010 Blackstone, Winemaker’s Select, Monterey County, was a decent, drinkable Chardonnay. Not overly oaked, but a bit acidic for my tastes. Perfectly presentable and a nice pairing with shellfish or a creamy cheese, such as fresh chevre.

The next, a 2007 Blackstone – Sonoma Reserve, Sonoma County Chardonnay was spectacular. I wish I had this wine when my tasting group compared this varietal. Great apple, pineapple and butterscotch on the nose following through with vanilla on the palate and a nice, lingering finish.

And, the best part, both of these wines were $7.99. I would go hands-down with the 2007 Sonoma County Chardonnay with just enough age and a heavy, pretty bottle that easily disguises the price you paid for such a well-made, evenly oaked wine to pair with seafood or chicken with cream sauces — or just to quaff after work.

Walk-in cooler.

While at  the Village Market, I also stumbled upon an incredible deal in vodka gifting, something that makes everyone on your list happy. A full 750 ml bottle of Polish Luksosowa Potato Vodka with four little engraved shotglasses for only $9.99 — a killer price for a quality spirit gift.

As a footnote, make sure to check vintages at this well-stocked store (and other stores). A few months ago I hurriedly picked up a nice bottle of a Napa Chardonnay in a tinted bottle. I misread the label thinking it said 2010 when it was really 2001 and totally undrinkable. The tint on the bottle disguised a dark yellow ruined wine. Only well-made and well-cellared Chardonnays can age.

The Village Market  is a perfect way to shop locally — and a “must-go” if you’ve got wine and spirits on your holiday gift list.

The Village Market., 11653 Moorpark Street, Studio City, (818) 761-4848.

Barbara Barrielle is a wine, food and travel lover since she was a small child trying to break out of the meat and potatoes cycle that was small town Ohio.  Now, in the land of plenty she owns a home and vineyard in the wine country and works in LA doing PR for luxury brands and travel while acting and producing when she can (get hired!).  Her daughter, Charlotte, 15, also an actor and frequent dining and travel companion, is in tenth grade at Campbell Hall where she also loves to write.

 


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