Wine Spectator uncorks honors for three Chattanooga restaurants

Wine Spectator uncorks honors for three Chattanooga restaurants

July 11th, 2019 by Staff Report in Breaking News

Michelle Richards, general manager and sommelier, poses for a photo Wednesday, Sept. 6, 2017, at St. John's Restaurant in Chattanooga, Tenn.

Photo by Erin O. Smith

Three Chattanooga restaurants have been honored as some of the world's best restaurants for wine in Wine Spectator's 2019 Restaurant Awards, including a Best of Award of Excellence for St. John's Restaurant, 1278 Market St.

Easy Bistro & Bar, 203 Broad St., and Ruth's Chris Steak House, 2321 Lifestyle Way, each won an Award of Excellence.

The full list of awards honors 3,800 dining destinations in all 50 states and 79 countries.

The Award of Excellence recognizes restaurants whose wine lists feature a well-chosen assortment of quality producers. There were 2,447 winners this year, including 40 in Tennessee, according to the magazine.

Best of Award of Excellence recipients offer more extensive selections with significant vintage depth and excellent breadth across multiple regions, says the magazine. There were 1,244 such winners this year, including four in Tennessee. The others are all in Nashville: Barcelona Wine Bar, City Winery and 360 Bistro.

The Grand Award is the program's highest honor. This elite group comprises the world's best wine programs, which deliver serious breadth of top producers, outstanding depth in mature vantages, excellent harmony with the menu and superior presentation. Wine Spectator carefully assesses each Grand Award candidate, including rigorous independent, on-site inspections of the wine program, cellar, service, ambiance and cuisine of the restaurant.

Blackberry Farm in Walland is Tennessee's only Grand Award winner, an honor it has earned annually since 2006.

"We're pleased to shine a spotlight on the destinations around the world that show devotion to their wine program, while also creating a comprehensive global dining guide for our readers to enjoy," said Marvin R. Shanken, editor and publisher. "Both novice wine lovers and seasoned sommeliers alike actively seek and frequent restaurants with exciting, well-curated wine lists. Bravo to all the 2019 recipients — we raise a glass to you."

All winners are profiled at and in the Restaurant Awards app. The app, available free on the app store, allows iPhone and iPad users to find nearby award-winning restaurants, with maps, plus helpful information about cuisine, wine and pricing. The full list of award winners is also available in print in Wine Spectator's August issue, on newsstands July 16.