Liguria may be one of Italy’s smallest regions, but it is also its most beautiful, stretching along the west coast with swathes of golden-sand beaches and lush forests of lemon trees. However, what this little slice of paradise is perhaps most famous is for its vineyards, with the red wines of Liguria being particularly renowned by international sommeliers and local residents alike. But other than touring the vineyards themselves, where is best to enjoy the products of these delicious grapes? Below, we dive into five of Liguria’s best wine bars, perfect for visiting when travelling through the region by car, on a cycling holiday or even by yacht charter - Liguria is one of Italy’s most desirable locations for yachting, after all!
Where the sample the stunning red wines of Liguria?
Winterose Wine Bar, Portofino
Tucked away in a secluded corner of Portofino is the Winterose Wine Bar, where a few small tables allow those lucky enough to be seated the chance to sip on delicious aperitifs as they enjoy the lapping sound of waves and soak up the romance of this charming fishing village. Enjoy a selection of the finest local and international wines, from the traditional red wines of Liguria to vintage French Champagne, served by the glass or in half or full bottles. Tuck into delicacies such as Italian caviar served with rye bread as you drink. This bar is also an extremely well-stocked shop selling its products to take home, so be sure to grab any wines that particularly take your fancy.
The Balance, Savona
The Balance is widely acknowledged as the best wine bar in the Savona, and with one of the owners a professional sommelier - and the other an expert in spirits and bars, for those who want a brief break from the vino - who can argue? The Balance has been a hub of the city since its opening in 2012. With a bustling atmosphere, located right in the heart of Savona, this chic bar is the perfect place for everything from a casual drink to a full-blown night out. Be sure to take advantage of the aperitivo, including mouth-watering Focaccia, to soak up some of the exquisite wines.
A Piè de Ma, Riomaggiore
This restaurant cum wine bar is set in the largest of Cinque Terre’s five lands, perched on the cliffside and providing stunning views out across the sparkling Mediterranean ocean. Sample the beautiful white, rosé and red wines of Liguria as you watch the sunset, taking your pick of delicious cheeses, a full-blown Italian meal or simply the fresh sea air to accompany your drink. As Cinque Terre restaurants go, it doesn't get much better than this.
Offering high-quality wines at extremely affordable prices, Calice has made a name for itself amongst the Genoese locals as one of the city’s best-kept secrets. With wines sold at €3 and complimentary snacks, this little spot has an extremely welcoming atmosphere. Bar staff make you feel like family, recommending wines that would be to your taste and even letting you sample them before committing to a glass. The Barbara is their best selling vino - try it and see why.
Enoteca Da Eliseo, Monterosso al Mare
Sampling the red wines of Liguria doesn’t get much better than at Enoteca Da Eliseo, the region’s famous wine shop and bar and a landmark of Liguria since the 1980s. With a relaxing atmosphere that encourages you to really take your time on the wines, this enchanting, family-run saloon is the perfect place to spend a lazy Saturday afternoon in the sun. Plus, you can take back a bottle of your favourite from their wholesale store, meaning you can immerse yourself in the produce of these sun-filled vineyards wherever you are.