If you’re searching for a Charleston SC wine bar to sit back and indulge in a mouthwatering glass of vino, look no further than the wine bar inside the Grand Bohemian hotel. Located at 55 Wentworth Street sits the infamous hotel which happens to be part of the iconic Kessler Collection. Just inside it’s doors is a provocative wine bar with an exceptional collection of wines from around the world that you can enjoy by the bottle, glass and ounce. With an ever-changing rotation of wines, you can always find something tasteful and unique to sip on.
Charleston SC Wine Blending Class
While you can visit the wine bar any day of the week, if you’re interested in abandoning your usual plans to experience something truly memorable, they also offer a 90 minute private wine blending class taught by expert sommeliers. In fact, the Grand Bohemian is the first stand-alone hotel in the U.S. to offer a wine blending class, so it’s an experience that’s truly unique to Charleston, and one that I can’t recommend enough after experiencing it myself!
Charleston SC Wine Bar
The class is open to everyone — from the experienced wine connoisseur to those with less experienced pallets, teaching you not only how to properly taste wines, but also how to create sophisticated red wine blends that are bottled for you to take home with your own personalized label attached.
Wine in Charleston SC
Now, while I’m not exactly a wine connoisseur, I like to imagine that I have a pretty refined palate, which is why I was especially excited to join this wine blending class. Before arriving I imagined sampling different varieties — Cabernet, Merlot, Malbec — and blending them to discover my personal flavor profile, you know — much like I might adjust a smoothie recipe by adding a teaspoon of cayenne pepper or a touch of freshly grated ginger. And, to be honest, that is exactly what happened. Making me now into a bit of a wine-blending junkie. 😉
Charleston SC Wine Tasting
As one might expect, the wine blending class begins with, well… tasting a lot of wines! We tasted four single-grape varieties — a Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, and Petite Sirah–and took flavor notes of each. Next, we were encouraged to sample a few hors d’ oeuvres, and note how the food changes the taste of the wine. Since the goal was to create three unique blends (one of which we would have bottled) we had to not only take note of the wine’s flavors, but also had to determine what percentage of each we wanted to include in each of the three blends, and note that as well. For example I really enjoyed the Merlot, so for each of the 3 blends, I incorporated a certain percentage (75% in one, 50% in the second, and 25% in the third).
After the tasting ended, the blending began. We each poured the different percentages of the wines into our personal graduated cylinder to create our custom blends. Then, the moment of truth — we tasted each of the three blends individually, and then chose our favorite. Surprisingly, the blend I imagined I would enjoy the most (with the 75% Merlot) is the one I liked the least!
Once we all determined our favorite blend, the sommelier used a high-tech wine dispensing machine to type in the percentages of our preferred blend, and filled a 750-ml bottle with it. That bottle was then corked and our personalized labels were attached to it so we could take it home to be uncorked and enjoyed at a later date!
Charleston SC Wine Bar
Like I mentioned earlier, if you’re looking for wine in Charleston SC, this sophisticated wine bar is a perfect choice! If on the other hand you’re open to experiencing something truly rare, and enjoy indulging in an evening of wine tasting — this is a class you don’t want to miss! Remember, the wine blending class is available on Friday, Saturday and Sunday only, and must be booked in advance.
Kessler Collection Hotels
To learn more about the hotels in the Kessler Collection, which are home to North America’s 2nd largest art collector’s artwork, make sure to read about my stay at the Mansion on Forsyth Park in Savannah, GA and Charleston, SC’s Grand Bohemian hotel and art gallery next.