Demystifying the wine experience

Post Off is a casual wine bar with a focus on naturally produced wines.

A few blocks west of the Fulton Street Farmers Market at 952 E. Fulton St. is Post Off, a wine bar specializing in naturally-produced wine and amaro-based cocktails. If you’ve been meaning to mix up happy hour, look no further. The bar offers a carefully curated drinks menu, including labels that prioritize natural processes and ingredients.

Sean Stearns and Rob Hanks, two of the masterminds behind Post Off, are adamant about making the wine-drinking experience better and more accessible.

“We are focusing more on what is considered natural wine or responsibly farmed and produced wine, nothing that has any additives,” Stearns said. “I think in the United States, there’s up to 70 different additives that are allowed to be put into wine, so the wines that we’re working with are basically none of those.”

Post Off serves a variety of rotating wine selections, but don’t expect to find your everyday wines here.

“A lot of people aren’t familiar with the wines we have because we don’t necessarily have a cabernet and a chardonnay,” Stearns said. “We have more styles than we do specific grapes. It’s OK if you’re not necessarily familiar with amaro (an Italian herbal liqueur) — we’re always willing to work with you to get what you want.”

While Post Off doesn’t have a food menu, guests are encouraged to bring fare from other restaurants.

“We do highly encourage anybody to grab takeout from their favorite restaurant, and they can bring it into the bar, and we will happily pair drinks with their food, which is actually a really fun process,” Hanks said. “By not having a restaurant, we have to be thinking off the cuff. Somebody could easily bring in some really spicy curry, and then the table next to them could very easily bring in a burger, and you have to be able to make some really
quick calls.”

Post Off offers a fine-wine experience in a casual package. Whether you’re stopping by for cocktails after a long day in the office or making a pitstop during your antiquing adventure, this wine and amaro bar has something for you.

“What we’re trying to do with this place is demystify everything that goes around wine — make it approachable,” Hanks said. “It doesn’t matter who you are; it doesn’t matter what your budget is like. We’re here, and if you want to take this fun, little journey with us, then let’s do it.”

This story can be found in the January 2021 issue of Grand Rapids Magazine. To get more stories like this delivered to your mailbox each month, subscribe here

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Ever since Pasha Shipp could talk, she's been dreaming up colorful stories. Fantasy creatures, mysterious kingdoms, enchanted forests, you name it. As she reached adulthood, she decided to take the magic out of her head and put it down on paper. Pasha has been writing for Grand Rapids Magazine since November 2015, and has loved every minute of it. She has a master's degree in Communication and a bachelor's degree in Film Studies from Grand Valley State University and Western Michigan University respectively. When she isn't daydreaming and writing stories for the magazine, she's exploring the many hidden treasures of Grand Rapids with her fiancé.