Toast of the town

Press, Modern Luxury San Diego

LJ Crafted Wines is making serious waves on the San Diego sip-and-swirl scene, thanks to a fourth-gem South African winemaker, enlisting next-level, pat-pending technology for pours straight from the barrels, all housed artfully under a glass tasting counter. “It’s always a privilege to have wine out of a barrel,” says owner Lowell Jooste, who has tapped elite Napa winemaker Alison Green-Doran. On offer: a rosé that’s essential for springtime, a finely honed Russian River pinot noir, and an elegant Napa cab. The custom, modern interior comes courtesy of a La Jolla dream team–GDC Construction and Marengo Morton Architects, both in-demand design stars. For local flair, there’s the custom Tim Bessell surfboard that serves as a counter, and (top secret!) a live cam of the illusive surf break, South Bird. Tearing a page from the buzzy brew scene, the growler club is halving the carbon footprint by using refillable wine growlers boasting the creative LJ Crated crest (named for its owner and location). “We looked at what was happening in the beer world and wanted to focus on the premium end of the wine world,” says Jooste, who earned stripes at the historic Klein Constantia and Anwilka. “I feel like we’re breaking new ground here.” We’ll drink to that. 5261 La Jolla Blvd.,

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