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Iron Sommelier at Louie's Wine Dive Lets Drinkers Be the Judge

The "Iron Sohm" event will take place at Louie's Wine Dive on January 12.

The "Iron Sohm" event will take place at Louie's Wine Dive on January 12.

Why does beer get all the love? It used to be that quaffing wine was what all the sophisticates were into, and now, suddenly, wine lists have fallen by the wayside at all but the most serious restaurants -- in favor of suds. But Louie's Wine Dive is trying to change some of that.

See also: Best Wine Bar Minneapolis 2014 - Terzo Vino Bar

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They do so by peeling away the sometimes esoteric side (some call it "snobbery") of ordering a good bottle, and putting wine back where drinking belongs: in a laid-back, casual bar setting.

And as it turns out, Louie's is a bar with good, solid, chef-driven food. The franchise is owned and operated by chef Patrick Matthews, formerly of the Dakota, 2021, and Babalu. He's a Miami native who puts together a pan-American, bar-friendly menu of small plates like crab cakes and short ribs, sandwiches and pastas, and comfort favorites like shrimp and grits and roasted chicken.

This menu offers lots of twists and turns to pair with the really likeable, unique, and affordable wine list, and onsite wine director Timothy O'Neal is there to help navigate. They'll even open any bottle on the list if you commit to two glasses.

Which brings us to the Iron Sommelier event. If you're a wine lover, you get the chance to try eight wines paired with five dinner courses, on January 12 at 6:30 p.m.

Louie's motto: Wine is supposed to be fun.

Louie's motto: Wine is supposed to be fun.

O'Neal will go up against Peter Plaehn, a wine pro from Wirtz Beverage Group, a leading broker of the world's top luxury and premium wine. You, dear diners, choose which sommelier has the best sensibilities when it comes to putting vino next to vittles, and the best man wins.

Tickets are $99 and are reportedly selling fast. Get yours by calling 612-824-3483.

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