Photos by Carli Wentworth
Sometimes Flexibility Is A Key To Success; keeping a firm core concept while remaining open to supplementary improvements over time can yield positive results, especially for Edmondites seeking a new fine dining option. When Vin Dolce Wine Bar opened in August of 2011, its dining options were restricted to small plates and desserts (hence the “Dolce” part of the name), and it developed an appreciative clientele on those terms. But change can be a good thing: While retaining its identity as a wine bar, in March of this year it expanded to full dinner service.
There’s an extent to which reviewing the menu isn’t particularly efficacious, since its selections rotate weekly; any one highly recommended dish – like the absolutely incredible appetizer of dates stuffed with gorgonzola, wrapped in bacon, grilled and drizzled with a sweetly tangy balsamic reduction – might not be available during a subsequent visit.
That shouldn’t be a problem, though, as the current menu is always available at vindolcewinebar.com and prospective diners can expect to find a number of entrée options among beef (the Burgundy steak tips are succulent bite-and-a-half-sized morsels in a rich red wine sauce atop a bed of cheese polenta with fresh asparagus for company), fish, pork or chicken and a “flat bread” – essentially a sauceless pizza on a light, chewy crust. Cross your fingers for the Sicilian version, which features Genoa salami, spicy capicola, fresh mozzarella, basil and grape tomatoes. And for further assistance with what the venue does best, each entry on the menu also has a recommendation for an accompanying vintage.
Vin Dolce’s cozy, softly lit atmosphere (the fixtures are hand-blown glass from a studio across the street) encourages lingering, making it even more of a pleasure to add the prospect of dessert … it’s surely not a coincidence that the decadent French chocolate espresso mousse is served in two matching miniature cups.
Already home to a robust selection of wines available by the glass, its new dinner menu serves as the icing on the grape. Give it a try – you may well find you’ve been missing out on la dolce vita.
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Only one, but it’s a biggie: enjoy the experience. Wine can be a bewildering business for neophytes, and wine culture is often mocked for its seeming pretentiousness – but you don’t have to be able to tell a Grenache from a Syrah while blindfolded in order to “qualify” as a wine drinker, and you can recommend a brand to friends without discussing its flinty nose or resonant bottom or insouciant appendix. On the other hand, absently gulping down half a glass like water or iced tea does it a disservice. Care and craft went into making this beverage; it rewards a little extra attention. Taking a deep preliminary whiff actually does help prime your palate, and letting it flow around in your mouth yields a more nuanced flavor than swallowing immediately. Find a kind you like (the Vin Dolce staff can help with that) and try taking a few extra moments to really enjoy your wine. It is possible to go overboard in oenophilic appreciation, but that shouldn’t prevent you from getting your feet – or your whistle – wet.
16 S. Broadway Avenue
4:30 - 10 p.m.
5 p.m. - Last Call