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Austin's preeminent sommelier shares her favorite bottles and wine traditions

June Rodil at June's All Day
Photograph: Courtesy June's All Day

If you've been to any of McGuire Moorman Hospitality's restaurants in Austin—Jeffrey’s, Josephine House, Clark’s, Perla’s, Elizabeth Street Cafe, Lamberts, June’s All Day, Pool Burger—and had a glass of wine, chances are it was hand picked by beverage director and master sommelier, June Rodil. With a restaurant named after her (June's All Day was dubbed one of Food & Wine's best new restaurants of 2017) and her own rosé that recently launched, Rodil chatted with us about her favorite bottles, wineries and traditions.

Tell us about one of the first wines you fell in love with.
When I was a cocktail waitress at the Driskill Hotel, we used to go across the street to the Stephen F.  Austin Hotel. I would order a glass of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, and I loved it! It’s one wine a lot of sommeliers seem to get attached to.

Is there a wine that you always have on hand at home?  
For sure: German Riesling, always. It’s off-dry and slightly sweet. People don’t realize they like a little kiss of sugar because it balances out the wine, so it’s great! It’s also low alcohol, so you can drink a lot of it, and it’s super refreshing. This wine is extremely inexpensive which makes it easy to have on hand at all times.

What are some of your favorite Hill Country wineries?
William Chris Vineyards, because it’s sourcing everything from Texas vineyards and a lot of [Texas wineries] don’t. I like the Mourvèdre and the Vermentino. Also try their sparkling rosé, because it’s super impressive and damn good.

Where do you like to stock up?
I love Austin Wine Merchant. They’ve been around for over 25 years and have an amazing burgundy collection. I buy gifts there for people all the time.

Do you have any traditions revolving around wine during the holidays in your own home?
The traditions we have are always drinking champagne for breakfast during the holidays, and I always open a bottle from 1996—which is the year my husband and I met. It’s also a great vintage for so many amazing regions.

Where do you like to drink wine when you’re not at your restaurants?
Bufalina and Whip In, which also has good beer. And I like to go to Whole Foods and drink beer while I’m grocery shopping.

Tell us about your new June's Rosé! What prompted you to partner with Austrian winemaker Markus Huber for this project, and what was that process like? 
Huber is a young and vibrant but also a multigenerational winemaker that is trying to take care of his family and make good wine at the same time. He started as a small domain producer to being a larger wine vineyard owner in his region. I love Austrian wines because they are very pure and well-suited for food since they are quite dry and refreshing. [June's Rosé] will be available at all eight of our locations as well as [clothing store] ByGeorge. Unfortunately, it’s not available for retail until the next vintage when we’ll make more wine. 

You can currently find June's Brut Rosé at June's All Day for $12 by the glass and $46 by the bottle.

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