No one in Denver has a wine palate quite like Pete Marczyk who, along with wife Barbara MacFarlane, has made Marczyk Fine Foods and Wine one of the great additions to the Denver landscape last year. Humbly claiming to be a wine neophyte himself, Marczyk personally samples every vintage that comes into his store, bravely tasting all the good, the bad and the ugly that the wine world has to offer before deciding whether it deserves a space on his shelves. This means that you could walk into Marczyk's wine shop blindfolded, pick a bottle at random and still be confident that you'll walk out with something good. What's more, Marczyk has arranged his shelves not by grape or growing region, but by what food each bottle would go best with, so you never have to worry again about embarrassing yourself by bringing a Zinfandel to a wienie roast or a spicy Shiraz to a tea party. And even if, after all of this, you still can't decide? Just ask: The only thing Marczyk likes more than tasting his stock is talking about it, and all humility aside, this guy really knows his grapes.


With a list including thousands upon thousands of bottles covering just about every grape, vintage, brand and growing area available, it's hard to imagine anyone not finding something drinkable on Adega's racks. But you know what they say: Size isn't everything. In Adega's case, we're talking quality as well as quantity in the green-tinted aboveground wine room (called an adega in Portugal), originally filled by master sommelier Ken Fredrickson and now ably tended by Chris Farnem. Whether you're looking for a rough and ready Burgundy, a boutique South African Cab or a pricey bottle of Château Lafitte-Rothschild to celebrate with, odds are good that Adega will have what you're looking for.
With a list including thousands upon thousands of bottles covering just about every grape, vintage, brand and growing area available, it's hard to imagine anyone not finding something drinkable on Adega's racks. But you know what they say: Size isn't everything. In Adega's case, we're talking quality as well as quantity in the green-tinted aboveground wine room (called an adega in Portugal), originally filled by master sommelier Ken Fredrickson and now ably tended by Chris Farnem. Whether you're looking for a rough and ready Burgundy, a boutique South African Cab or a pricey bottle of Château Lafitte-Rothschild to celebrate with, odds are good that Adega will have what you're looking for.


Karin Lawler, who handles the stock for Clair de Lune's small, perfectly paired list, has turned away more grape-juice salesmen than she's talked to. Working closely with chef/owner Sean Kelly, Lawler keeps on board only those bottles that will blend elegantly with the ever-changing roster of plates coming out of Kelly's kitchen. Worried about not finding something drinkable? Don't be. The selections are well-chosen and interesting -- and if you have any questions at all, the waitstaff at Clair de Lune is always ready with a smart suggestion. In a pinch, they have bomber bottles of Chimay Red or Grand Reserve on hand -- and those go with everything.
Karin Lawler, who handles the stock for Clair de Lune's small, perfectly paired list, has turned away more grape-juice salesmen than she's talked to. Working closely with chef/owner Sean Kelly, Lawler keeps on board only those bottles that will blend elegantly with the ever-changing roster of plates coming out of Kelly's kitchen. Worried about not finding something drinkable? Don't be. The selections are well-chosen and interesting -- and if you have any questions at all, the waitstaff at Clair de Lune is always ready with a smart suggestion. In a pinch, they have bomber bottles of Chimay Red or Grand Reserve on hand -- and those go with everything.


When you're truly needy, there's always a way to get around Colorado's pesky blue laws. Dave Tewksbury, tobacconist and owner of Tewksbury & Co., happily sells Sunday libations to desperate souls, offering a small but distinguished collection of Colorado wines -- from a Carlson Vineyards Shiraz to a Plum Creek Cellars Merlot -- alongside cigars and hand-tied flies. His ABC focus gets him a pass with the state liquor board and ensures that you never have to show up to a dinner party empty-handed.
When you're truly needy, there's always a way to get around Colorado's pesky blue laws. Dave Tewksbury, tobacconist and owner of Tewksbury & Co., happily sells Sunday libations to desperate souls, offering a small but distinguished collection of Colorado wines -- from a Carlson Vineyards Shiraz to a Plum Creek Cellars Merlot -- alongside cigars and hand-tied flies. His ABC focus gets him a pass with the state liquor board and ensures that you never have to show up to a dinner party empty-handed.
Sure, there are beer vendors who carry more brands, at lower prices, than the Wine Company, a tiny retailer in Littleton. But those outlets can't touch this store's thoughtfully chosen, well-tended selection of gourmet suds. The experts here know (and drink) the beers they carry and bring in treasures they crave and can sell. Go on, step into the cooler and indulge your beer-drinking fantasies.
Sure, there are beer vendors who carry more brands, at lower prices, than the Wine Company, a tiny retailer in Littleton. But those outlets can't touch this store's thoughtfully chosen, well-tended selection of gourmet suds. The experts here know (and drink) the beers they carry and bring in treasures they crave and can sell. Go on, step into the cooler and indulge your beer-drinking fantasies.


Flying Dog Brewery Tasting Room
Flying Dog bottles up a whole line of brews -- from a deep chocolate porter to crisp lagers. But even without the Ralph Steadman label, Old Scratch would come out head and shoulders above the competition. An amber ale with a sharp bite and stinging, peppery aftertaste, Old Scratch has much more punch than the lagers. No doubt about it: This dog can hunt.

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