If you love wine and cheese as much as I do, not only are you immediately my friend, but you'd also love Vindinista. It's the cosiest, friendliest wine bar with a difference, and I'm so glad to have discovered it!
It's actually only been open since this February, hence why I didn't know about it until an invite pinged into my inbox, but it seemed from the buzzing customers on a Tuesday evening that others have been in the know for a while.
Tucked away in Acton, West London, they pride themselves in being the neighbourhood wine bar with a twist - serving off-the-beaten-path wines in an intimate setting, with a tempting food menu to snack on while you sip.
When E and I arrived (we only live a quick bus ride away, which is dangerous), Stacy, the owner, gave us a warm welcome and we settled by the window on comfy counter seats (you can imagine the blogger in me rejoicing - "this is the perfect lighting!!") to flick through the menu. Although E knows a fair amount about wine, we are no connoisseurs, so when Stacy suggested that he would choose a few wines that best represent Vindinista, it definitely sounded like the best plan.
Out he came with 4 different wines for each of us, and very helpfully labelled them so we knew exactly what we were drinking. They were (quoting their descriptions):
Tornal Zenit 2013, Hungary - a volcanic wine that's a bit like Picpoul
Bullshit Grauburgunder 2014, Germany - SO much more than boring Pinot Grigio
Suertes del Marqués 7 Fuentes 2013, Tenerife - fresh, a little bit funky & a white pepper finish
Li Velli Askos Susumaniello 2013, Italy - plush & aromatic con molto va-va-vooma
Although we actually enjoyed them all, our unanimous favourite for the white was the Bullshit, and E preferred the Susu for the red, while I liked both equally (but they are completely different). They were all very easy to drink, and I loved the variety - it helped to listen to Stacy's enthusiastic and educational descriptions of them beforehand, too! Who knew that Tenerife produced such interesting wine?
Of course, we couldn't enjoy all that wine without cheese... or charcuterie, or rillettes. I felt like we were reliving our Bordeaux days! The food did not disappoint - top quality cheese, the meat was delicious, the rillettes was spot on (and a generous portion, may I add), all accompanied with delicious sourdough and fig & hazelnut bread. We both absolutely love meals like these, and polished off every bite. They also have a truffled cheese toastie on the menu that sounds pretty amazing, that's on the agenda for our next visit...
We sat for a while, chatting as the evening settled and more and more customers came in. They clearly have their regulars - there were small groups of friends gathering together, couples, a lady enjoying a glass of wine in the corner whilst working on her laptop. I really enjoyed the atmosphere there, and I'm not surprised that the place was filling up on a school night.
I realise that Acton isn't particularly central and it may be a little out of the way for some, but if you enjoy bars like these - small, intimate ones, original and with character - it's well worth venturing a little West for. As for us, we really have no excuse and I'm sure we'll be showing our faces again in the very near future.