Wine Lands And Fig & Thistle: Where To Taste Indie Wine

Where to taste indie wine this weekend

Most of you are going to Outside Lands for the music. We're going to drink.

In his sixth year of organizing the festival's Wine Lands tent, Peter Eastlake, of Vintage Berkeley, says he still loves picking wines for an unpredictable crowd: "You just go, 'Try this!'"

So we do. We're splitting our drink tickets between venerable wineries such as Long Meadow Ranch and Ridge with pours from California's avant-garde.

In fact, Wine Lands has become a showcase for young talent. Look out for Forlorn Hope's Trou Grit, an Alsatian-style Trousseau Gris; Hobo Wine Company's peppered-strawberry Grenache; and the berry blast of Field Recordings' Zinfandel-based Fiction blend.

Forgot to buy day passes? You can taste some of the same wines at Hayes Valley's new Fig & Thistle, where co-owner Angel Davis focuses on up-and-coming winemakers. Right now, she's pouring Field Recordings' soft Santa Ynez Chenin Blanc ($11); Scholium Project's Rhododactylos ($14), a savory white Cinsault; and La Marea's juicy Grenache from Monterey ($14).

"I like it when winemakers are doing something different and exciting," she says.

Rock 'n' roll.