We recently made it over to Jet Wine Bar on South Street near the Rittenhouse Square neighborhood of Philadelphia. Not only were we looking forward to checking out the vibe, menu and the wine list (of course), but we were excited to attend one of their Wine Tasting classes. Jet Wine Bar hosts a different wine tasting in their lower lounge about every 3 weeks on a Tuesday evening. Tickets sell for $25 and grant you some great wines, snacks and 15% off your bar tab for the night. The theme of the night this time: Rieslings from around the world.
We stacked up our plates with some wine pairing munchies from this beautiful display of fruits, veggies, nuts, cheeses, breads, etc. and were ready for Riesling.
We sipped on 5 wines from different countries, beginning appropriately with Germany, home of the Riesling Grape.
We ventured into France, Washington and New York in the USA, and then ended with New Zealand. Some wines were sweeter than others…some were lighter than others…but all of the wines had something unique to offer. It was great to experience the variations. While everyone’s palates and opinions differed throughout the night, in the end, Germany stood strong for most, including us.
To see a full description and recap of all the Riselings and Tastings from Jet Wine Bar: Click here
When class was dismissed we made our way upstairs in search of the wine list. The place is very small, but cool and cozy, so we didn’t have to go far. We were thrilled that seats at the front, open window were available. It was a beautiful evening to sit “outside”.
We were a little full from all the wine and snacks but we both agreed we had to take advantage and order up a few small dishes and some more wines. We are so glad we did. All the great reviews we’ve been seeing online make perfect sense to us now. Jet Wine Bar is a such a nice break from some other over-priced fussy wine bars in the city. This place is classy, yet casual at the same time. The blue lighting and decor throughout the place give it a modern, but almost futuristic vibe. (The light fixtures are the coolest!) Prices are extremely reasonable and the wine list is so diverse and unique. We had our first Sparkling Moscato and a Treyu from Spain. The red wines include countries like Austria and Greece. The Greek Cabernet/Merlot blend, Ippeas, was smoky, fruity and velvety at the same time. They were all under $10. This is what a wine bar is all about! We can’t wait to go back and try some more wines and dishes. Aside from the great menu, after asking the owner a few questions, we understand why this is such a great place. See our interview below.
Snack to start: House-made chips with lemon aioli. Followed by: Mix and Match Bruschetta – Spinach/Goat Cheese and Pear/Onion/Gorgonzola. These little bites were full of flavor. Can’t wait to have more and try the others!
Perfect sweet ending…
This chocolate chip bread pudding was out of this world! It even smelled fantastic!
We had a wonderful time at Jet Wine Bar and definitely plan on returning. The owner, Jill Weber, has traveled the world as an Archaeologist and wine lover. Jet Wine Bar is a true reflection of her diverse background and awesome adventures. We would like to thank her for having us and for taking the time to answer some of our questions. We are always inspired by other wine lovers who take the time to share their passion.
1. Why and when did you know you wanted to open a wine bar? (What inspired you?)
I had been talking about it with my husband for a loooong time, probably 10 or 12 years. There was a wine bar that very briefly opened in the back of the current Tequila’s location and that sort of made me think about it. Then more recently I had been enjoying the strange wines and wine bars I would go to in my travels both as an archaeologist and for pleasure. There were always so many great places – even in Syria, Turkey, Norway – places one doesn’t associate with wine. Then, a close friend died in a freak accident and we realized that you just have to do stuff, can’t really wait.
2. Why the name “Jet”?
I like short, concise names. My own, full name has only 5 syllables! “Jet” was supposed to conjure the idea of “travel”, “global”, “world”, etc. I knew that I wanted to have wines from around the world. Also, we originally thought we’d have a Bauhaus design, which went well with a Jet plane for me.
3. What is your wine and food background?
I eat and I drink! In college I worked at a coffee/ice cream snack shop. I got more interested in wine after taking some classes in Philly at the Wine School. Really, my current “skill” is from experience!
4. What inspired your menu and decor?
Menu: my “global” tastes, and what the chefs did best.
Wine: my “global” interest in wines
Decor: I like the color blue. I like simple and sleek. I like cool things and let my husband and his company (NextFab Studio) design the awesome light fixtures.
5. What has worked best for you so far?
What has worked best is sticking to my original mission of unusual wines/grapes/countries. When we have wine from Brazil or Morocco, people love to try it. That was the whole point in the first place. We have taken the long view of providing quality and friendliness and have been rewarded with a loyal customer base that continues to grow.
***Bonus Question: What is your all-time favorite wine?
We had a wine once called Santippe from Poggio Trevvalle in Tuscany. I forget the vintage, but this was a few years ago. It had the most wonderful flavor of wild strawberries. It was unforgettable.
For more info and upcoming tastings and events at Jet Wine Bar: Click here
- What Makes Riesling One of the Best White Wines? (wine.answers.com)
- Battenfield-Spanier: The BEST German Rieslings not imported to America…until now (rockssandfruit.blogspot.com)
- Bottle of Wine Time at the MuvBar (hollyinthecity.wordpress.com)