Durham locals know that Bar Brunello is the go-to spot for interesting wines, charcuterie, and conversation. Bon Appétit knows this as well -- the preeminent food magazine featured this chill wine bar in its November issue. For a closer look at Bar Brunello, we chatted with Esteban, the sommelier who opened the Main Street wine bar in 2016.
If someone could only order one thing from your menu, what should it be and why?
Talenti, Brunello di Montalcino 1999. It’s drinking beautifully and I believe it’s one of the most traditional Brunello vintages right now – earthy, complex, nice cherry notes, tobacco, some spices on the finish – and you won’t easily find it anywhere else in town.
What do you love about Durham?
The people, the soul the city holds, and the sense of community.
When did you realize that you wanted to open your own establishment? What was your inspiration? Did you have an 'aha' moment?
As a kid in Buenos Aires, I watched my parents and their friends having long gatherings at my grandma’s house or at our home, and seeing everybody having so much fun – that was the inspiration for Bar Brunello. For me, this is the ultimate goal for the industry: to start talking to each other again and start enjoying people the way we did in the past.
What other restaurants or establishments do you love to go to in Durham and why?
Gocciolina has great Italian food. M Sushi is outstanding quality. Alley Twenty Six and Bar Virgile offer amazing craft cocktails, and 106 Main is the best neighborhood bar in town.