A guide to dining at The Curious Grape
The Curious Grape knows there is more to being a wineshop than offering pairing suggestions.
So when its owners moved the Shirlington shop earlier this year, they added a café and wine bar with half-portions of wine and food.
The kitchen doesn’t skimp, either. The café pairs notoriously challenging foods, including artichokes and asparagus, with its best wines.
Start with a half-glass of 2011 Saint Clair Sauvignon Blanc ($5.25). The crispness balances sweet baby artichokes in a warm salad with breadcrumbs and a minty citrus dressing ($9). The wine also stands up to local asparagus in a sweet Meyer lemon vinaigrette with a soft-boiled egg and shaved speck ($9).
A small pour of 2010 Blanchet Old Vines ($5.75), a mineral-laced Pouilly-Fumé, cuts the butter of pillowy gnocchi ($10), which are tossed with Yellowfoot mushrooms, spring garlic and snap peas. The wine can pull double duty if you order scallops in vanilla beurre blanc ($12) over black rice. The kitchen simmers the rice in coconut water, giving the dish a tropical complement.
Finish with pistachio-crusted goat cheesecake ($3.50) and a glass of Dios Baco Oloroso ($12), a woody and tangy sherry that adds a caramel finish onto the dessert.
The Curious Grape Wine, Dine & Shop, 2900 S. Quincy St., Arlington; 703-671-8700 or curiousgrape.com
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