Postino Levels Up Its Brunch Program With Innovative New Line of Wine-Based Cocktails

Sherry Mary made with Sherry and Madeira wine grown only on an island off the coast of Africa

POSTINO WINE CAFE, the beloved, Arizona-headquartered collection of beer and wine-focused restaurants with buzzing Houston outposts in the Heights and Montrose, just rolled out its first-ever cocktail menu. And although all of the cocktails on the refreshingly low alcohol content menu are spirit-free — think cocktails crafted from fortified wines, aperitifs and exotic beers instead of the usual, throw-your-afternoon-off-track fare — the spirited menu is bold in both vision and flavor.

The new menu, which will be offered to the professional brunching crowd on Saturdays and Sundays starting at 9am, features three different riffs on the classic Aperol Spritz, a beer-spiked take on the mimosa, and a bloody Mary made from sherry that won't force you into a midday coma nap like its more liquor-logged cousins are known to do.

"As a beer and wine establishment, we felt we'd done everything we could to showcase the great diversity of those offerings, from proprietary wines and boutique producers to local and nationally beloved craft beers," said Brent Karlicek, Postino's beverage director, in a statement. "But we felt we were leaving a particular guest out to dry and made a commitment to better serve those who are passionate about craft cocktails.

"Launching a brunch cocktail menu built around spritzes and other lower alcohol beverages is a great way to let guests continue to sip and savor and keep the party going, compared to more robust spirits-based cocktails that may take your afternoon off-track," he continued.

For the new menu, the Postino team started with a list of 20 potential cocktails before they slowly, through a series of careful tastings, honed the list down until they ended up with five final cocktails that made it across the finish line and onto the menu. The final result of their efforts is list of sip and savor cocktails designed to keep the party going.

Included on the new menu is the Sherry Mary, Postino's take on a bloody Mary, made from an umami-forward mixture of Oloroso Sherry, Rainwater Madeira and bloody Mary mix. The menu, which launches this weekend, also features the Sure Shot, a refreshing and bubbly concoction made from Cocchi Rosa, sparkling rose, grapefruit juice and soda.


“I WISH I came here sooner to experience this amazing city,” says advanced sommelier Rachel Van Til of her move to Houston just one year before the pandemic lockdown. When Covid appeared in 2020, along with layoffs and closings, it led to a career swerve for Van Til, a working mom who was a sommelier at Pappas Steakhouse. She took over the wine program at The Clubs at Houston Oaks, a posh (initiation fees can range into the six figures) members-only club northwest of the city with 10 lodges, 17 lakes, 900 acres and six dining options. Speaking of lots of good food and vino, the club’s 2022 Wine and Food Classic is this February 12 — it’s a great chance to taste hundreds of wines from around the world and learn about them from winemakers and professionals. “It’s our largest event of the year and it’s open to the public.” In our Q&A, Rachel dishes on her favorite date night, best wines to try this year and her brush with the me-too movement!

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