Expand That Wine Palate at the SF Vintners Market

Indisputably Northern California’s signature industry after tech, wine is a similarly dizzying self-contained universe that can easily overwhelm newbies and the uninitiated. What if you’re throwing a dinner party and your besty’s date is a total wine snob? How do you get a good deal on a case you can lay down for a few years and impress the shit out of everybody? What if you've stalled out somewhere on the scale between outright vulgarian and sommelier?

[jump] That’s where 11th San Francisco Vintners Market enters the picture. This massive event in the hangar-like Fort Mason Center brings dozens of wineries from the wider region into one space, that oenophiles may browse them like produce stands at the farmers market. Only instead of raw asparagus, you get to sample vino!

While a tasting room of this scope (both “poly-varietal” and “non-denominational”) is a rarity, the number of boutique vendors is even more impressive. (“Curated” is an over-abused word. But you won’t see Yellow Tail Shiraz anywhere, no, no.) And the best part of the SF Vintners Market is the inclusion of small or experimental wineries that may not have a brick-and-mortar space — something that can make it difficult for the general public to even hear about them in the first place. Check out the full list of participants here.

If you get too laden down with bottles to even contemplate taking the 22-Fillmore back home, you can ship it on the spot, or even schedule a follow-up winery tour. And make sure to bring a little wine notebook to document the expansion of your palate. That way you look really smart even if you get a bit tipsy.

SFoodie readers can nab a 50 percent discount on the $80 general admission both days, as well as to the $125 Reserve Room, by clicking here.

SF Vintners Market, Saturday and Sunday, April 11-12, noon – 4 p.m., at the Fort Mason Center.

Follow Peter Lawrence Kane on Twitter.

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