DC has a lot of liquor stores. It has fewer wine shops. It has a few big places like MacArthur, Calvert Woodley and Scheiders that serve big chunks of the District. What is harder to find are wine shops that either carve out a niche or do right by their neighborhood or both. There are a few, and we are on the lookout for more. When we find them, we’ll flag them for you. We start with a relative newcomer.
Domestique has claimed a niche. The focus is on natural wines, which they define as “wines made from organic or biodynamic grapes, fermented with ambient yeasts, and with very minimal use of sulfur (if any).” For those of you not up to speed on wine industry lingo, this means wine that are the antithesis of big, manipulated, oak-y monsters that were born in California for the last 20-30 years. At Domestique, the wines are not just old world, they are old school (so old, it has become the cool new thing). Their stock is mostly French. They also carry a limited selection of ciders and beer. This is a place where every bottle has a story and the staff know those stories by heart. They have some bottles under $20, but their sweet spot is $20-45. You are paying a few extra dollars for the craftsmanship and effort to get these wines to the States.
If you are novice wanting to explore or a more experience palate looking for something interesting, this place is worth making a trip to check out.
Do you have a favorite wine shop in DC? Let us hear from you. You can contact us directly here, or hit us up on social media – see the links at top and bottom of the page.