If you’re looking for a great bottle of wine in L.A., you might want to head to Silver Lake. These days, the neighborhood and surrounding area is home to an assortment of excellent shops, including the newest, Psychic Wines, which opened just this week. Each store has its own specialty and personality, but they all share a laid-back, approachable vibe that makes wine-buying fun. Here are the five best wine shops in Silver Lake to try when you’re ready to pop some corks.
The arrival of Psychic Wines in the neighborhood was announced nearly a year ago, but only this week did the doors officially open to the public. Psychic is a “sister shop” to Diversey Wine in Chicago and Ordinaire in Oakland. On the shelves you’ll find a number of natural wines that, according to the shop’s website, “are vibrant reminders of our own vitality.” 2825 Bellevue Ave., Silver Lake.
Silverlake Wine practically set the template for the local shops that came after by focusing on small-producer artisan wines at affordable price points, sold by knowledgeable-but-never-pretentious staff. Since opening this location, the owners have followed up with shops in the Arts District and Highland Park. If you prefer to try before you buy, the shop hosts popular public tastings on Thursday and Monday nights. 2395 Glendale Blvd., Silver Lake.
Vinovore makes picking out wine super easy and fun by color-coding every bottle in the shop for the type of drinker most likely to enjoy it. Maybe you’re a “pink pony” who enjoys vivacious, fruity reds, or a “yellow rabbit” who goes for creamy, floral whites. Find the one that feels right, and then look for stickers of that color around the store. Vinovore also distinguishes itself with a focus on female winemakers. 616 N. Hoover St., Silver Lake.
As the name implies, Big Spirits is first and foremost a liquor shop–and, specifically, a very good one with a wide selection of quality spirits you’ll actually want on your bar cart. But as you walk deeper into the store, you’ll notice tall shelves stocked with approachable wines, including a number of those super-cute Winc. bottles you’ve seen all over Instagram. Bonus: The shop stays open until 11 p.m., seven days a week. 2856 Sunset Blvd., Silver Lake.
Technically over the border into Los Feliz, Lou is still just a short hop from Silver Lake. Lou Amdur entered the wine world in 2006 with a wine bar in Hollywood, but it shuttered in 2012, eventually settling here in 2014 as a store and tasting room. The stocking is eclectic, but with a special emphasis on wines from the Loire Valley, Madeira, Sicily, and the Jura Mountains. Follow the shop’s site to learn about the thrice-weekly tasting sessions, which include three to five pours on a specific theme, and are typically held on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday evenings.
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