If you know anything about Miami, you know that this city has never played by the rules. From the so-called “Cocaine Cowboys” of the 1980s to the college-aged partiers who descend on the city every spring, the Magic City’s reputation has always been a little rebellious.
So, when it comes to Miami’s wine scene, the only rule is there are no rules—and what may be considered normal elsewhere is considered boring here. Instead of stuffy tastings with a crowd full of tailored suits and hundreds of big brand bottles, Miami plays host to events like “Grape Crush,” a natural wine club that regularly pops up at trendy restaurants and was founded by one of the wine industry’s coolest female duos.
While other big cities might see natural wine as nothing but a mere trend, Miami has embraced the movement and made it mainstream. As proof, look no further than the flurry of natural wine bars and shops that have opened up in recent years. From a trendy Mexican restaurant to a wine store that doubles as a bookstore and bakery, here are six hotspots to know about.
Grape Crush Miami
At monthly Grape Crush events, founders Macarena Carrillo (Maca) and Mariel Dalmau (Mari) prove that wine education can make for seriously fun nights out. With experience at Miami institutions like Cote and Margot Natural Wine Bar, the best friends and sommeliers are naturals at bringing well-heeled folks together over low-intervention wines at some of Miami’s hottest restaurants, bars, and even clubs. Don’t let the “Miami chic” vibe of these nights fool you into thinking it’s all for show—things can really get geeky if you want. To sign up for a Grape Crush event, simply make a reservation at the partnering restaurant (no tickets are required). Grape Crush is a relaxed atmosphere where you choose what you want to drink from a handpicked list and ask Maca and Mari questions as they make their rounds through the venue.
Krüs Kitchen & Los Félix
In the heart of Miami’s historic Coconut Grove is a charming two-story space that houses two distinct concepts by local hospitality group Grassfed Culture. On the top floor, you’ll find Krüs Kitchen, where Chef Sebastián Vargas plates locally-inspired eats like wild-caught Florida shrimp or fresh mango with coconut cream. The restaurant—which does double duty as an artisanal food and wine market—also hosts weekly wine tastings of low-intervention standouts like a light-bodied Mourvedre from Berkeley, California-based Donkey & Goat or Guy Larmandier’s “Vertus” Brut Zero Champagne. Choose from a wide selection of wines organized by categories like “crispy whites” and “robust reds.”
Meanwhile, the lower level is Los Félix, a hip restaurant serving up authentic Mexican cuisine and featuring a rotating natural wine list that might include Chile’s Trapi del Bueno’s sparkling Riesling/Chardonnay blend and a skin contact Pinot Gris from Anderson Valley’s Tessier Winery. The culinary team uses the finest heirloom corn and Milpa farming techniques to craft traditional Mexican fare.
Grassfed Culture’s co-founder, wine expert Josh Hackler, explains why they’ve chosen to focus on natural wine throughout the space. “At Krüs Kitchen, natural wine isn’t some sort of buzzword,” he says. “This is the only wine people should be drinking in our opinion. It’s supporting an entire supply chain of thoughtful creators.”
Margot Natural Wine & Aperitivo Bar
Margot is the much-anticipated Downtown Miami natural wine bar that opened in July of 2021 after a successful run as an outdoor pop-up at South Beach’s Nikki Beach. Now located inside the historic Ingraham building in the up-and-coming Flagler area, Margot is a funky concept from the Bar Lab team, the same folks behind other Miami hotspots like Broken Shaker and 27 Restaurant on Miami Beach. This bar is chic and airy and keeps the natural wine, low ABV cocktails, and small dishes flowing until 1 AM on weekends. The wine list changes daily but expect to find bottles by producers like Baia’s Winery from Georgia, Txampian Txakoli blanco made from the Hondarribi Zuri grape (a grape that only grows in the Basque Country region), and Radikon Wines from the town of Oslavia in Friuli.
Paradis Books & Bread
This genre-blurring spot combines a bookstore, bakery, and wine shop in North Miami. At Paradis, browse politically driven titles, fiction, and poetry books that have been handpicked by the five owners, based on their reading preferences. Dine on freshly baked sourdough bread or shop a curated selection of natural wines, which you can enjoy inside or on the pretty outdoor patio. Our recommendations: the Jeux de Vins Riesling from Alsace, or Serradinha Touriga Nacional rosé from Lisboa. With lots to choose from when it comes to sipping and reading, this cozy neighborhood natural wine shop and café is the place to get lost in a great book or bottle.
Lucio/Wine Shop is one of Miami’s “OG” natural wine spots. Owned by chef Lucio Bueno, it was named “Best Wine Shop” in 2021 by the Miami New Times readers. On any given day, you can walk into Lucio’s shop, located in an unassuming shopping center in the El Portal neighborhood, and find top wine professionals and enthusiasts shopping for all the best low-intervention labels from around the world. Fancy a “Tasty Waves” Piquette by Subject to Change? How about a “Bajita Belo” by Slovenia’s Kobal Wines? Lucio has a bottle for every mood. In addition to wine, the shop also brings together artwork by local artists as well as various gifts and an array of cheese and charcuterie.