Cheers, Cin Cin, Skål

Top bottles to pop this holiday season

We caught up with Dana Gurela, owner and founder of Deep Roots Wine Market & Tasting Room, opening this month in Woodstock. Dana developed a passion for wine after her first visit to Napa in 2009. When she and her husband Todd moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in 2012, she turned that passion into an obsession. She went to wine school and began working in wineries. The name Deep Roots recognizes the vines' struggle to survive in the vineyard and the connection to family here in Georgia. Here are her recommendations for toasting to the holiday season.

Top bottle for toasting NY Eve 

Sea Smoke "Sea Spray" Blanc de Noirs

This is a very special bottle of sparkling wine that is sure to get your New Year started with a “POP”. We only get a small allocation of this each year and it’s like Christmas morning when it arrives. On the nose, it expresses fresh blueberries, rising dough and rose petals. The palate is complex, yet fresh with flavors of citrus, melon and mango. $97

Favorite bottle for sipping and wrapping gifts 

MacRostie Wildcat Mountain Pinot Noir

When you’re wrapping gifts this holiday season, turn on the Christmas music and crack open this lovely Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast. It has a beautiful garnet color and equally enticing aromas and flavors of cranberry, dried flowers and spice. We like to call it "Christmas in a bottle"! $58

Investment bottle, a gift for the in-laws 

Amulet Estate Mockingbird Blue Cuvee

Wow! Just wow! You will certainly impress your in-laws with this stunning Cabernet Sauvignon derived from Amulet Estate's most select barrels. It expresses complex flavors of crushed raspberry, dried blueberry, cocoa powder and black tea. The Mockingbird Blue Cuvee is powerful, yet elegant, and will cellar for years to come. $295

Top bottle to give your hair stylist or your assistant to show them the love

Stolpman "Love you Bunches"

The name says it all! This is a perfect gift for the white and red wine lover alike. It is a beautiful carbonic Sangiovese that is best served with a slight chill. Aromas and flavors of bright red raspberry, red currant, rhubarb, and violet jump out of the glass. It is super refreshing and bone-dry with just a kiss of fine tannin. $26


For many reasons, partiers are turning to non-alcoholic cocktails. Gone are the days of a bartender just mixing up a Shirley Temple in a rocks glass when an intrepid drinker requested a no-proof beverage. Now, bartenders are stocking their top shelves and well with a gorgeous variety of alcohol-free bottles and keeping cans of spirit-free, ready-mixed cocktails in the cooler. For whatever reason (and it’s nobody’s business), more people are giving up booze. 

Spiritless was founded by three women juggling the long hours of entrepreneurism, the skepticism of a male-dominated industry, the expectations of motherhood, the fulfillment of mentoring, the intimacy of partnership and the desire to carve out just five minutes of Zen.

A variety of hand-selected American oak is combined with a high-proof neutral grain spirit. By modulating the heat and pressure in the still, they imitate the barrel aging process seen in traditional spirits, over multiple years, in a matter of hours. The intensely flavored high-proof oak-infused spirit cools in preparation for the next phase. The reverse distillation process separates ethanol from the Kentucky 74 distillate.  Spiritless is a smart addition to your bar. 

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