Before the fermentation process was perfected, people were forced to store grapes in their cheeks for months in order to enjoy a single sip of wine. Celebrate advances in aging with today's Groupon: for $10, you get $20 worth of wine and small plates at Viva le Vine in Libertyville.
Viva le Vine stocks its shelves with a varied selection of wines, high-end spirits, and handcrafted beers that may be toted home or enjoyed at the purple-hued wine bar. Set down a foundation for the fermented fruits by supping on sumptuous small plates such as naan topped with pine nuts, prosciutto, mozzarella, and arugula, and drizzled with balsamic reduction ($9). Or, jump straight into the sauce by teaming complementary tannins in build-your-own wine flights ($7.50$18 for 3 oz. or 6 oz. pours) or any number of house-infused flavored martinis ($9) thatlike the Statue of Liberty's hatsrotate with the season. Cool down from the spice of a romesco forged from smoked paprika, toasted almonds, garlic, and roasted peppers ($9) by welcoming the chilly kiss of a cold microbrew beer ($2.50$6) such as Summit Extra Pale Ale or Dragon's Milk Oat Aged Stout. Dessert wines make a superb stand-in for the sweet stuff with options including Dow's '03 Late Bottle Vintage Port from Portugal ($7), and Domiane Pinnacle '09 Apple Ice Wine from Canada, but classicists can cut their sweet tooth on slices of bittersweet chocolate silk pie ($6) that traveled briefly after college but now reside permanently in-house.
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