We ended up at that very cute, quaint and simple bar, Grape and Grain exchange . The bar which is a Speciality Bourbon, Wine, and Craft beer retailer. Sits on one of the corner blocks on a San Marco Block right next to Maple street Biscuit Company.
When you walk in to G&G(Grape and Grain) there is so much natural light from the 10ft tall windows with stool seating. The tall ceilings and wood crafted walls covered in specialty bottles of bourbon/whiskey, it feels like your are walking in to an upscale country store. To your right theres a lovely bar clean and white with aluminum red stools. The back of the bar is decorate and stocked with beautiful wine, beer, and balloon glasses.
The menu offers a wide selection of hand crafted beverages, beer and wine on tap, wines by the glass plus a cheese and charcuterie.
We decided to go with a wine by the bottle on the recommendation of the bartender. We headed to the cooler to pick a nice bottle of wine that was reasonably priced. They have EVERYTHING your wine filled heart could desire. Ranging prices from $10-$100 for a bottle a wine.(plus a corking fee, 1$ for beers $10 of wine). We chose a chilled white pinot gris. The staff was friendly and extremely knowledgable about the wines explaining the different flavor profiles and level of sweetness we could expect. We were going to do a champagne/sparkling wine but the ones we liked weren't chilled and as we all know .. You can't drink warm champagne.
Three Pear wine ($12)has a pear after taste and is light and not too sweet is. It would be great with fish and light fare.
So we sat down to try the meat and cheese platters asked about pairing with our wine.Based on those recommendations we chose our meats and cheeses. He was right, the pairings were phenomenal.
What I liked about this wine was that it was full of flavor and refreshing. This wine is following a new trend of screw top wine no cork to pull (makes it easy to open). Personally I would take this wine on a picnic with me.
We also chose a beer to try from the cooler
A Cigar City brewing, Florida Cracker is brought from tampa.
Normally I am not a huge beer drinker but for the sake of trying local beer it went with it. It was like drinking a mimosa in a beer. The beer reminded me of florida summer. With hints of orange peel and vanilla up front then lead to citrus and a light flower flavor. I was pleasantly surprised and at 3$ a beer (plus $1 corking fee) it was an all around great choice that was picked out for me.
All in all my experience at G&G was GREAT. I enjoyed learning about about the drinks and bourbon and trying some of them (forgot to take picture but i'll add them later).
Its definitely a place to check out and go on your own taste trial with the bourbons. I would check it out for happy hour. Sometimes on the weekend they have a acoustic band playing.