Photography by Jen Britton
The partnership is also held by the duo’s shared, hands-on work style. A lifelong Angeleno, Styne entered the wine world as a manager at Jones restaurant. “I’m of the school of learning on the job. So, I rolled up my sleeves, immersed myself in the wine world. I didn’t take any classes, but tasted, tasted, tasted.” Her advice to those wanting to learn about wines is to taste. “My rule is there are no rules. It’s okay to experiment.”
Styne loves to share her passion and knowledge of food and wine with diners with an ever-changing wine list and Tavern’s bi-monthly Wine and Cheese Club. In an effort to showcase small, artisanal wine producers, preferring local producers from Santa Barbara and Santa Rita Hills, the first and third Monday night dinners pair unusual and interesting wines like Baja Mexico Meritage with four composed dishes like shrimp with saffron rice, blistered tomato sauce and piquillo pepper aioli.
As host of the dinners and the restaurant’s wine director, Styne maintains an ever changing and affordable wine list and commitment to make wine educational yet fun. “Wine shouldn’t be stuffy or intimidating. My approach to wine is comfortable and approachable,” says Styne. “Not being precious, not pretentious – fun and chatty.”
Styne keeps it light and conversational on her blog “Styne on Wine”, where she writes about all things wine as well as fashion, travel, and a visit from “POTUS” – aka President Obama – who dined at Tavern last year. For anyone looking to learn more about wine, Styne offers, “Every palate is different. If you know what you like, know how to describe it.” With a penchant for “clean, dry, and not fruity” wines, the self-professed “Rosé freak” offers Rosé as the perfect summer drink. “I can pair a whole dinner about Rosé and we’ll usually have five to six Rosés on the menu in the summer.”
“Wine shouldn’t be stuffy or intimidating.
My approach to wine is comfortable
and approachable,” says Styne.
“Not being precious, not pretentious
—fun and chatty.”
Styne offers these tips and top 5 picks for Rosé:
DOMAINE TEMPIER BANDOL ROSÉ— “A classic – light salmon-colored, clean, bright, and slightly aromatic.”
DOMAINE DE FONTSAINTE GRIS DE GRIS —“Like summer on the beach on St. Tropez” Baker Lane Pinot Noir Rosé – “bright, clean, fresh.”
MOULIN A GASSAC VIN DE PAYS ROSÉ—“This wine blends high acidity and freshness with a delicate floral perfume and exotic quality – rich yellow peach and candied nectarine aromas with notes of fresh strawberry and plummy stone fruits on the palate.”
CLOS ST. MAGDELEINE CASIS ROSÉ—“From an amazing place on the coast of France, the wine has notes of strawberry, melon, and fully-bloomed roses. Though the flavors are vibrant, the wine is clean and crisp and manages to tame its fruity exuberance with a touch of salty minerality.” “Wine shouldn’t be stuffy or intimidating. My approach to wine is comfortable and approachable,” says Styne. “Not being precious, not pretentious —fun and chatty.”
THINK SUMMER FOODS WITH SUMMERTIME ROSÉ. —“Rosé seems to go with all of those fresh dishes like salads made from summer produce, fish dishes, and barbecue.” Try pairing with a light and refreshing corn and crab salad.
DON’T SWEAT IT TOO MUCH. —“Because Rosés come in a variety of weights and levels of fruitiness, they are incredibly versatile.”
WHEN IN DOUBT, USE YOUR SENSE OF COLOR TO GUIDE YOU. —“Rosés that are lighter in color tend to be lighter and brighter in terms of flavor. Rosés that are darker in color tend to be fuller in body and flavor and bigger and more rich.”
KEEP IT COOL.— “Always serve Rosé cold and in a wine glass or glass tumbler. I like to use Riedel’s stemless glasses for ease of cleaning and casual entertaining by the pool or beach.”
Tavern, 11648 West San Vicente Boulevard Los Angeles, CA, tavernla.com