Looking to sip this Saturday night? Step into one of Luxury Attaché’s Top 5 Wine Bars for that velvety smooth finish or chilled bubbly white.
1 Blue Ribbon Downing Street Bar
This tried and true neighborhood gem is only further testament to the staying power of the Blue Ribbon group and their vast portfolio of stellar NYC spots. In a perfect balance of sensibilities, Blue Ribbon Downing Street Bar provides an extensive wine list and gourmet fare too boot, in a comfortable yet chic, intimate space. Wines range from local multi-vinal blends to reds, whites and effervescent must-tries from around the globe. Can’t decide? That’s the best part; here, selections aren’t limited to a glass or bottle. Instead, the thirsty set are encouraged to create their own multi-varietal flights, sip on multiple ‘taste’ pours before settling on a full glass and are even able to order half bottles. So saddle up, sip and repeat.
Joe Campanale is no stranger to the haute dining scene what with Dell’Anima and L’Artusi still packing in crowds until the wee hours of the night. This charming 50-seat wine bar, aptly named Anfora in reference to the clay vessels used to transport wine in ancient Rome and Grecian times, is the perfect escape from the bustling streets outside. The extensive list includes a large representation of natural, biodynamic and organic wines as well as those--no surprise here--that are aged using the aforementioned amphorae pots--a method that’s making a stunning comeback. Intrigued? Sip through these different types to determine which are more pleasing to the palate.
3 Bar Jamon
Whoever said that dining and drinking are only properly acceptable when seated has clearly never imbibed at Bar Jamon, Mario Batali’s consistently packed to the gills hole in the wall. With only several stools to snag, standing room only is the name of the game at this veritable spillover spot from Batali’s similarly crammed Casa Mono nextdoor. Authentically Spanish in both theme and decor, wines from all over that side of the world are incredibly well-represented in the book, yes it’s that vast, of vino. Bottles are expensive--some run upwards of $400, but the hyper-curation of the selection as a whole is not lost on the very knowledgeable staff. Choose a robust red and order the jamon iberico for that perfect Spanish-slanted pairing.
4 Bar Boulud
Just one glance at Bar Boulud’s selection of over 500 wines and it’s clear: this is truly a grapevine-laden paradise, just ask famed Sommelier Michael Madrigale. The journey begins in beautifully long, barrel vaulted main dining room, complete with a communal tasting table in the back, but it’s in subterranean wine cellar where the magic really happens. Daniel Boulud has filled the space with wines from the Rhone Valley and Burgundy regions--his favorites saddling his native city of Lyon. Additionally, varietals considered to be close in flavor profile and tasting notes to these French based blends, such as Pinot Noir, Grenache and Viognier are also put on display, heralding in new world regions like California and Australia. While most bottles are served just so--by the bottle--glass selections are available; though truth be told, once inside Boulud’s tour-de-force du vin, one isn’t nearly enough.
5 The Champagne Bar at The Plaza
Champagne by any other name wouldn’t taste as sweet, so it’s only fitting that a bubble-centric bar--inside the opulent Plaza no less--would top our list. This is as exclusive as it gets. There’s no better time or place to break open a bottle of bubbly than while overlooking views of Fifth Avenue while dipping into a dollop of the finest caviar. Vintage and non vintage bottles of brut dominate the luxurious list, as well as a limited selection of tete de cuvees, roses and a smattering of swanky champagne cocktails. With a reminiscent ode to the space’s original design--it first opened its doors in 1907 as the Champagne Porch--this is the most exquisite spot to celebrate a special occasion, or luxuriate in the best of what this magnificent city has to offer.