One of the guiding principles of the judges at the World’s Best Wine Lists awards is to reward creativity and personality—two qualities that are every bit as important in creating a worthwhile wine list as length and depth. The wine offer at San Francisco’s Quince expresses both those qualities in spades, not least in its inclusive by-the-glass offer, which covers a lot of vinous ground (at very attractive prices) in its two-dozen selections. At the time of judging, the esoteric (Királyudvar Furmint Sec Tokaji 2011 or Grosjean Frères Torrette Valle d'Aosta, 2011) were lined up alongside more familiar names such as Conti Costanti Brunello di Montalcino 2004 and Tyler Chardonnay Santa Barbara 2011.

The core list is no less creative, moving around the world with flair and an accent on food-friendly, elegant styles, to match the French and Italian-inspired modern menu, based on locally sourced ingredients. And so, funky modern Iberians such as Bodegas Ponce from Manchuela in Spain and Aphros from Vinho Verde in Portugal mix with a finely judged collection of top Burgundy, grower Champagne, modern California, and many more besides.