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Vancouver's annual wine festival features Canada this year, and Westside wine shops let the discoveries continue. (Vancouver International Wine Festival photo)

Westside Wine Shops with Festival Spirit

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This year’s Vancouver International Wine Festival celebrates Canada, but when there’s no reason for the fun to end when the tastings finish.

As a student, I often marvelled at the bottles tossed into the recycling bins of my well-to-do Point Grey neighbours. It seemed like everyone could afford more than the plonk my friends and I shared in our basement suites. Years later, I’ve come to have my favourite wine bars and retailers.

Vancouver Westside has its share of wine shops, and I don’t mean the host of private liquor stores that started opening 15 years ago. No, the veterans of the local wine scene are Broadway International Wine Shop at Macdonald Street and Liberty Wine Merchants in Point Grey. Kitsilano Wine Cellar on West 4th has also made a name for itself, and New District in Dunbar is coming on strong.

Broadway International Wine Shop

A narrow little space by the 99 B-Line stop, Broadway International Wine Shop is perfect for people on the go. It’s well worth investigating both for its range of local offerings as well as selections from around the world. It often hosts in-store tastings, too, making it a neighbourhood favourite.

Kitsilano Wine Cellar

Kitsilano Wine Cellar is a sister shop to West Vancouver’s Dundarave Wine Cellar. Its bright interior and central location on West 4th make it a favourite place to explore on weekend afternoons. Plenty of wines at a variety of prices keep visitors looking, investigating and adding to their wine knowledge.

Liberty Wine Merchants

Liberty’s several locations make a virtue of tightly packed spaces. You’ll feel like you’re in an actual wine cellar, with narrow rows of bottles nestled in wooden cases. The location in Point Grey village tucks into the ground floor of an apartment tower. It’s adjacent to Safeway, a convenient stop when you’re picking up groceries. With a grand selection of fine international wines, it’s the place to go for something out of the ordinary. A healthy assortment of local and international craft beers round out the product mix.

New District

The latest addition to the Westside’s retail community, New District brings a dedication to local wines. It also offers some choice products from around the world. Spirits and craft beers sit alongside wine in its attractive shop at the south end of Dunbar. It’s destined to become a neighbourhood favourite as the area continues to evolve.

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