Innovation That Matters

Urban tasting room plays host to eight local wineries


Encouraging consumers to try new wines is a goal that has united vintners around the globe for many years, as evidenced by the trial-sized tubes, wine-tasting games, and technology-enhanced wine bars and wine tastings we’ve covered. Working along similarly cooperative lines, a bricks-and-mortar tasting room recently opened in San Francisco that promotes the wines of eight boutique producers through a series of dedicated tasting stations. Launched last fall, the Press Club is a tasting cellar located at the foot of the Four Seasons Hotel in the heart of San Francisco. Featuring both a common area and eight winery-exclusive tasting bars, the Press Club incorporates the best efforts of eight different Northern California vineyards, each of which is represented onsite by its own employees: the Chateau Montelena Winery, the Fritz Winery, Hanna Winery & Vineyards, Landmark Vineyards, Miner Family Vineyards, Mount Eden Vineyards, Pahlmeyer and Saintsbury. Patrons at the Press Club can taste flights offered by any of the individual wineries, or they can mix and match among them. A menu of accompanying bite-sized treats, meanwhile, draws from a selection of savory delights and sweet surprises inspired by the fresh fruits, produce and dairy of Napa Valley and Sonoma County. The Press Club’s social experience caters to individual wine enthusiasts, friendly gatherings and private group events. Wine is also available by the bottle for retail sale. Much like the online efforts of Naked Wines, the Press Club’s focus on local producers creates a unique bouquet that blends not just excellent wines and tryvertising but also a heady dose of (still) made here appeal. And while its model is particularly well-suited to the urban areas close to wine country, there’s nothing to say such an establishment couldn’t do stunningly well in, say, Chicago or London, as long as the right partnerships were in place. One to emulate—with vintners’ blessings—for wine lovers near you! (Related: Urban winery & wine bar in NYC.)



Download PDF