Monday, May 9, 2011
Zinful Wine Bar and Restaurant Now Open In Waterville
UPDATE from the editor: We regret to announce that Zinful Wine Bar and Restaurant has closed.
Time was the Toledo area was virtually barren of wine bars. Parched wine lovers were crawling across a dry desert landscape begging for a drop of Sauvignon Blanc.
Now the landscape is a virtual oasis with three wine bars beckoning with bottles galore. Last Wednesday Zinful, 7541 Dutch Road, Waterville, (419) 878-9463, opened its doors as our area’s newest wine landmark. Zinful offers full lunch and dinner menus and a focus on wines you probably won’t see on restaurant lists in the area.
Joyce Franzblau didn’t envision being the owner of a wine bar as recently as last fall. She had worked in the health care business but had always wanted to own her own business. When a building foreclosed about three miles from her home, she decided to buy what had formerly been a family restaurant. The vision was to be a landlord, but less than three weeks later the conversation had shifted to opening a wine bar that also sold cigars.
“I like wine, my husband likes cigars, and my brother likes craft beer,” said Joyce. “We’re not experts, but we’re trying to make it a cool experience. So far we have hit a bullseye.”
The wine list features 15 whites with nine by the glass options. There are two rose’s. For reds, there are 33 selections with 18 by the glass choices. There is also a selection of sparkling and dessert wines. For the whites, the high end bottle is 2005 Ladoucette Pouilly Fume from France ($50). The priciest red is the 2006 Montes Purple Angel Carmenere from Chile ($60). Of course, if you want to splurge, you can pick up a bottle of Dom Perignon Champagne for a mere $180.
The featured winery is Klinker Brick from Lodi, California. They offer an Old Vines or Old Ghost Zinfandel as well as a nice Farrah Syrah. We’ve reviewed these wines before and they are awesome.
In fact, Zinful lives up well to its name, offering 10 different Zinfandels including Zen of Zin, Earthquake and Cartlidge and Browne.Also on the wine list are a 2009 Dr. Loosen Riesling from Germany, 2009 Anne Amie Cuvee A Pinot Noir from Oregon and a 2006 Seven Hills Merlot from Washington. Three different Malbecs are offered as well as three different Syrahs. This is a great wine list. Wine flights and themed wine tastings will be coming in the near future.
The wine bar is sleek and stylish, decorated in a silver theme. Upon entering, you are greeted with a copper bar with a wide assortment of wines. To your right is a dining area and straight ahead is a sports bar complete with flat screen TVs and a wide assortment of craft beer on tap. Live music is offered on Wednesday and the weekend. Open mic nights are also in the plans. Past the sports bar is a private room for events up to 25 people. Outside is a covered patio to enjoy your vino or cigar (yes, Zinful has a cigar humidor and sells a nice selection).
The restaurant has opened with its casual dining menu, which includes salads, sandwiches, sliders, appetizers and burgers (including a popular American Kobe burger). The fine dining menu will be rolled out soon and includes steaks, swordfish, Cajun Tiger Chicken, marinated beet salad and many dishes finished with interesting wine sauces. Zinful has its own pastry chef and while there I sampled a pineapple upside down cake with ice cream and caramel sauce. It’s a winner!
Zinful is very accessible, being just one exit south of Fallen Timbers on US 24 and a stone’s throw from the intersection. It is open Monday through Saturday beginning at 11 AM. It would be a “zin” not to pay a visit and check out this latest Mecca for wine lovers.