Photo courtesy of Cassellula.
It will come as no surprise that NYC is home to some world-class wine bars. From classy establishments in the fancy corners of Manhattan, to quirky, tucked-away spots a bit further afield in Brooklyn and Harlem, there’s the perfect bar for every traveler, expat and New Yorker.
The Big Apple’s range of bars is as diverse as the city itself, and no one list could do the NYC bar scene justice. However, you have to start somewhere, so I’m going to try and boil the myriad possibilities down to a select list.
Here are five of the top NYC wine bars to experience:
Photo courtesy of June.
Hidden away in Brooklyn’s Cobble Hill, June is a natural wine bar serving up delectable small plates and European wines. Cozy up in one of their booths with a bottle of natural wine and a range of shared plates; we love the pan-seared Spanish mackerel, the slow-cooked lamb breast and the olive oil cake with lemon cream. All atmospheric lighting, art deco mirrors and polished white marble, June can make you feel like you’re stepping into a mid-century bar in Vienna. In Brooklyn. Divine.
Photo courtesy of Racines.
In the heart of Tribeca, Racines is a sleek, stylish bar that offers delectable French cuisine and organic, biodynamic wines. Modeled on a traditional Parisian bistro, Racines may be relaxed and affordable, but its wines and food are brilliant. Michelin-starred Marseillais Chef Frederic Ducas offers up a fine menu, but if it’s the wine you’re after, you can’t go wrong with a bottle of red and Racines’ cheese plate. Paris in Tribeca, indeed.
Photo courtesy of The Ten Bells.
3. The Ten Bells
All pressed tin ceilings and exposed brick walls, the unmarked bar front housing The Ten Bells is a Lower East Side highlight. Congregate around the bar or at communal tables and enjoy one of the city’s finest wine lists in a cool and casual atmosphere. The people at The Ten Belles really know their wines, but the place has none of the pretension of a classically sophisticated wine bar. This is evidenced by their fabulous happy hour special: $1 oysters and $15 carafes.
Photo courtesy of ABV.
Chic, cosy and always popular, ABV is one of the best bars in Harlem. This little spot is the perfect place to kick off an evening, or slow down with a nightcap. ABV has plenty of comfy seating and a great menu, too. Their Elysian Fields Lamb Burger is a highlight, as is their hand rolled gnocchi, however they also offer a range of starters and snacks if you’re just catching up with friends over a glass of wine.
Photo courtesy of Cassellula.
Many of the bars on this list sport a full menu, and all serve up fabulous small or shared plates. However, Cassellula has honed its specialization down to two of the finest things in the world: wine and cheese. Head to this little Hell’s Kitchen bar for its fine wine list, elegant atmosphere and cheese plates worthy of Normandy.
Bonus bar: the Four Horsemen is opening soon in Brooklyn and is sure to be a top wine bar as well.
This post is part of an original Epicure & Culture series, Worth The Buzz.
What’s your favorite NYC wine bar? Please share in the comments below.
By Gemma King