Restaurant Hospitality’s 16th Annual Best Wine Lists In America

Restaurant HospitalitySouthpark Seafood Grill and Wine Bar was awarded top honors for its wine program and Guy du Vin was the original writer of that list when the restaurant opened in 1998. Southpark is the winner in the Short List Category in Restaurant Hospitality’s 16th Annual Best Wine Lists In America Competition. The judges were the experts at the independent Beverage Testing Institute. We are particularly pleased with this quote from the accompanying article:

“The winners of the short list category and particularly the 1st place winner, Southpark Seafood Grill, explored a diverse and exciting range of wines within a fun and creative presentation. The Southpark list was last year’s winner and it remains head and shoulders above the competition this year.” (emphasis added)

We know that it may be a little unseemly to crow about it when you get a compliment, and as we read in Steve Edmunds’ newsletter recently, quoting the novelist Jim Harrison, “the goose that’s trying to lay golden eggs shouldn’t use a mirror to look at its butt.” But the truth is, we don’t mind being mentioned with the likes of Charlie Trotter, The Herbfarm, Restaurant Gary Danko and Canlis! In addition, what makes this award even more meaningful than some of the other awards Southpark has received is the strict and detailed criteria used to pick the winners. No favorites, lots of competition and no sending in your $250 check for a guaranteed award (a la The Wine Spectator).

David Holstrom of Guy du Vin Garners Award for Lauro Mediterranean Kitchen

Monteray Wine FestivalWe don’t feel all that comfortable with self-promotion here at Guy du Vin, but our International Marketing Division insists that we squeeze every drop of good press for all it is worth. Obviously, one of the things we want to do is encourage you to buy wine from us. For those of you who don’t know us personally, who haven’t been to a Guy du Vin wine tasting or eaten at one of the restaurants where we manage the wine program, perhaps this will encourage you to try some of our wine suggestions.

So, without further ado and at the risk of serious physical injury, we engage in earnest “patting ourselves on the back”.

The annual Monterey Wine Festival Restaurant Wine Competition once again awarded top honors for a wine program crafted by David Holstrom of Guy du Vin®. This year the “America’s Best Wine List, Under 50 Selections” award went to Lauro Mediterranean Kitchen on SE Division.

Lauro, which opened in May of 2003, hired Holstrom to design the original wine list. Chef David Machado and General Manager Daren Hamilton wanted a list that reflected the Mediterranean theme of the kitchen with prices that matched their desire to be a neighborhood destination.

When designing the list, Holstrom didn’t worry that many of the wines would be unfamiliar to the diners. “I knew that the staff at Lauro would take the time to talk to their customers about the wines. I also knew that Chef Machado and Daren planned to offer wine by the glass, the carafe and half-carafe. Offering wine in different portion sizes encourages people to be adventurous and try wines they might normally miss or pass by.”

When asked why his wine programs have been so well received in so many different competitions, Holstrom is quick to point out that he is fortunate to work with restaurant professionals who realize the importance of a strong wine program and are willing to focus as much time and resources on the wine as they are on the food and the space. “And they don’t just want a great wine list – they want a great wine list that complements the food and fits in with the style of the restaurant.”
Doug Frost, MS, MW, and director of America’s Best Wine List Awards states that the awards are “… not based merely on size, length, or excessive inventory, but rather on how they offer restaurant customers a breadth of selection, fair pricing, clarity, information, quality, style and affinity with the restaurant’s cuisine and concept.”

David Holstrom has received numerous awards for his wine programs, including the 2002 Monterey Wine Festival award for “America’s Best Wine List: Fine Dining” for Southpark Seafood Grill and Wine Bar and more recently, the 15th Annual Restaurant Hospitality award for Best Wine List in America: Short List” also for Southpark. In addition, in 2003 he was a finalist for Bluehour from the Monterey Wine Festival. Holstrom’s wine programs have also received numerous awards from Santé Magazine, Bon Appetite, Food and Wine and many more.

Other winners of the Monterey Wine Festival include Rubicon and The Sardine Factory (both in San Francisco), Aureole of Las Vegas and The Herb Farm in Washington, among others.

Small Business

Check out this 2003 article in the The Portland Business Journal on Guy du Vin and David Holstrom.

Business Journal Portland

National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation Raises its Glass to the Winners of America’s Best Wine List Awards

David Holstrom wins America’s Best Wine List Award: Fine Dining (100 – 500 Wine Selections) for Southpark Seafood Grill and Wine Bar.