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The Top Five Things to Drink at Best of the Bay

A guide to the bar and wine scene at the city’s most anticipated fête.

There’s never an excuse for an empty glass at the Best of the Bay party, the annual celebration that’s as famed for its 12 open bars and free-flowing wine as it is for its smorgasbord of never-ending samples from dozens of the city’s top restaurants. (If you do happen to come across a line at a bar, don’t stand there and wait. Just push your way farther back to the next bar, or the one after that.) Already feeling overwhelmed? Here are five must-drink beverages to look out for Thursday evening. 

 1. Fourteen wineries will be pouring at booths in the wine tent, many manned by the winemakers themselves. We'll be heading straight to Schug Carneros Estates' table to sip their world-renowned vintages.

2. Don't miss the acclaimed sparkling from Gloria Ferrer. You’ll find the clear yet complex brut in the main area, and VA de VI, a dry, ultra-premium blend, in the VIP lounge.

3. Sonoma’s oldest family-owned winery, Gundlach Bundschu Winery, which still makes some of the region’s best wine, will be there, and you’ll definitely want to have a glass or two. (Tip: It’s pronounced something like Goond-Lock Bun-shoo but referring to it as Gun-Bun is totally acceptable.)

4. You can’t go wrong with a Bulleit Rye Manhattan. If you’re not a purist, consider taking it up a notch by subbing the 10-year Bulleit Bourbon for the rye.

5. Bartenders will be mixing a Luxury Margarita, made with fresh lime, agave nectar, and Don Julio Blanco. Sounds pretty solid to us.

 Thirsty yet? Buy your tickets!

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