Friday, January 11, 2013

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in New York City, USA (2012)

Picture: New York City

For a more recent list see:
Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in New York City, USA

This is my list of favorite wine bars in New York City. It includes wine bars that I know and have visited and will go back to. It also includes wine bars I have not yet visited, but I have heard about them and would like to visit them.

It includes wine bars in the pure sense, where the focus is on the wine and the food is on the back burner. It also includes restaurants that have a nice bar area, where they serve interesting wine.

It also includes some places that do not impress me because of the wine, but because of other factors. Sardi’s – the icon in the Theater District – is an example.

At the end of the article, there are links to useful web sites.


Red Rooster
310 Lenox Avenue (125th Street
The racial and ethnic variety in the vast bar and loft-like dining room are virtually unrivaled in New York. The restaurant may not be the best to open in New York City last year. The scene is amazing: a pulsing, cheerful and virtually always-packed bar that gives way to a crowded and sleek dining room beyond it, decorated with the work of local artists. In the seats: Harlem itself, along with many visitors from downtown and afar, everyone playing a role in the restaurant’s grand vision.


Upper West Side

Bar Boulud
1900 Broadway 
Bar Boulud is Daniel Boulud’s wine bar and bistro located across from Manhattan’s Lincoln Center. Daniel Boulud is a star and plays almost in the same league as Alain Ducasse. He is a chef, owns now a little restaurant imperium across the globe and just got his third star Michelin. In contrast to Alain Ducasse, however, he is not at all established in his home country, France.

See also:
New York Manhattan Wine Bars -- Bar Boulud, The Ten Bells, Terroir and Clo.

Upper East Side

Theater District

In the Theater district. A famous restaurant for pre-show and after show dinners. Has also two bars, one next to the entrance and one on the first floor where Sardi’s serves decent wine. Nothing special.
234 West 44th Street

Morek Wine Bar and Café
Wine store plus small wine bar (a 14-seat curved black granite bar make for a cozy atmosphere) plus large sidewalk area. More than two thousand bottles are available from their extensive list, with fifty wines by the glass.
West 49th Street, between 5th and 6th Avenue, Rockefeller Center

Clinton - Hell’s Kitchen

Xai Xai
75 South African Wines. 
369 West 51 Street

Midtown East

Grand Central Station Oyster Bar
This is the best place in town for New England Chowder and of course oysters, in a beautiful space under the world’s most famous station. The wine list is also impressive.
89 E. 42nd St. at Vanderbilt Ave.

Murray Hill

Terroir Murray Hill
439 3rd Avenue


One of New York’s best known Italian wine bars. The Seventh Avenue digs of this congenial Italian wine bar are roomier than its East Village original, but the prices remain unchanged: Most small plates cost less than $8. Only one bartender caters to the after-work, wine-swigging crowd.
176 7th Avenue between 20th and 21st Street

Trestle on Tenth
A neighborhood favorite and a citywide destination that focuses on small growers, winemakers and vintners from around the world who have a hands-on relationship with the natural wines they produce.  An AAWE Rheinhessen Riesling Tasting with Stuart Pigott in 2012 took place there.
242 10th Avenue (West 24th Street)


Bar Jamon
This tiny wine bar from Mario Batali and Chef Andrew Nusser sits adjacent to Casa Mono, their Spanish eatery. Find a space along one of the communal tables before selecting from the impressive Spanish wine list and tapas menu.
125 East 17th Street (at Irving Pl)

Gramercy Tavern
Gramercy Tavern has one of the best wine lists in town, including a large list of wines by the glass. The selection of Riesling speaks for itself: Perhaps 20 Riesling wines - mostly from the Mosel Valley, with 3 dry wines.
42 East 20th Street

Veritas unites a great wine cellar with a contemporary American menu.
43 E 20th Street

Meatpacking District

9th Avenue Corner Little West 12th Street

West Village

LeLa Bar
33 seats arranged around an intimate oval bar make this a favorite for locales. There are more than 150 wines on the list with 20 available by the glass.
422 Hudson at Leroy Street

Uphostery Store
Chef Kurt Gutenbrunner is the king of a little Austrian empire in New York City, comprising 5 very special restaurants and wine bars. One of them is the Upholstery Store - an intimate wine bar serving a variety of wines by the glass and by the bottle and offering a selection of charcuterie and cheeses. Just around the corner of his Wallse restaurant.
344 West 11th Street

Vin sur Vingt
Small wine bar with French-only wine list. Comes highly recommended, but did not convince me.
201 West 11th Street

Terroir at the Porch on the High Line
From May through November, this alfresco café functions as the park’s only sit-down restaurant. Partner Paul Grieco’s wine-and-beer list focuses on New York State, but not to the exclusion of his typically worldly selections
High Line at West 15th Street

Blue Ribbon Downing Street Bar
Flagship winebar of the Bruce and Eric Bromberg’s Blue Ribbon group. The tiny space’s white-marble-topped bar offers an ideal spot for sipping vino while digging into small plates such as warm, thick toast with luxurious smoked sturgeon.
34 Downing Street (between Bedford and Varick Sts)

Greenwich Village

Gotham Bar and Grill
A truly quintessential New York restaurant, with a nice bar.
12 East 12th Street

Corkbuzz Wine Studio
Corkbuzz – a new place - is many things: a wine bar, a wine-centric restaurant and a place for wine education that offers classes. A Terry Theise recommendation.
13 East 13th Street (b/t 5th Ave. and University)

Otto Enoteca Pizzeria
Large, stand-up bar area, massive Italian wine list.  Every region represented with options across a range of prices.  Tasty food as well.
5th Avenue/8th Street

East Village

Bourgeois Pig
Large French wine selection. Comes highly recommended, but it did not appeal to me.
111 East 7th Street

Bahr Che
A new contemporary wine bar featuring a dramatic wine wall displaying 1500 bottles of the best wines from all over the world, located on the ground floor in the Gwathmey Siegel apartment building in Manhattan at 26 Astor Place (entrance on cooper square) serving cheeses, charcuterie, foie gras and an assortment of delectable deserts and chocolates – pretty empty when I checked it out.
26 Astor Place/ East 8th Street

Terroir E.Vil
This is the initial Terroir, with 24 seats, just next to Heath Restaurant.
E 12th St, (between First Ave and Ave A)

Hearth Restaurant
403 East 12th Street

Momofuku Ssam Bar
Second Avenue East 13th Street

Katz’s Delicatessen
205 East Houston Street


Boqueria Soho (and Boqueria Flatiron)
Spanish tapas bar/restaurant offers many Spanish wines that you don’t typically see outside of Spain.
Boqueria Soho
171 Spring Street
Boqueria Flatiron
53 West 19th Street

Major institution open for breakfast and all day, into the morning hours. Sit at the beautiful pressed metal bar and have a steak frites and order a glass of Hermitage.
80 Spring Street b/w Broadway and Crosby Streets

Lower East Side

A bustling trattoria for small plates and wine. The frequently updated list features only Italian wine. Wine and small plates are served at the bar where you can watch the chef slice paper-thin prosciutto on a racecar-red hand-cranked slicer
98 Rivington Street

Like it only because of the name.
131 Rivington Street

The Ten Bells
Be sure to check out the oyster happy-hour special from 5 to 7 p.m.—you can eat your fill for only $1 each. My #1 wine bar in New York City.
247 Broome St.

See also:
New York Manhattan Wine Bars -- Bar Boulud, The Ten Bells, Terroir and Clo.
In the Glass: 2007 Riesling trocken from Wuertz Rheinhessen with Oysters at the Ten Bells in the Lower East Side in Manhattan

Trendy Italian restaurant with organic Italian wines, mostly from small producers. Pull up a stool at the bar.
173 Ludlow St.


Terroir Tribeca
24 Harrison Street

See also:
Terroir(s) Wine Bars in London, New York and San Francisco – Wines with a Sense of Place versus Natural Wines


Oak Wine Bar
Comes highly recommended but in my view not worth the trip.
361 Graham Avenue near Graham Metro

Roberta’s Pizza
A mix between a pizzeria, an organic farm, a creative kitchen, a craft beer garden and a serious Italian oenoteca. This fascinating place is located in Bushwick, an up and coming neighborhood in Brooklyn that is a bit further away than Williamsburg coming from Manhattan, but nevertheless quickly reachable with the L line. Artist and students are settling down here and their craving for good food is only satisfied by a few places. One of those is Roberta's.
261 Moore St Brooklyn,NY
Subway: L line, Morgan Ave

Hotel Bar of Wythe Hotel. The all-French list is comprised of “all-natural” wines made “without intervention” by small producers.
80 Wythe Avenue

Italian sibling of Reynard.
243 Dekalb Avenue
G train to Clinton Washington or C train to Lafayette

Chris Lucas

New York, New York! Restaurateur Chris Lucas Shares his Favorites

Alex Haller Tips (blindtaster)

Momofuku Ssäm Bar (David Chang), New York Apr 2010
WD-50* (Wylie Dufresne), New York, Nov 2007
Degustation (Wesley Genovart), New York  Apr 2010
JLOB – Jack’s Luxury Oyster Bar, New York  May 2010 Dec 2008
Roberta’s Pizza (Carlo Mirachi), Brooklyn Apr 2010
Sushi Yasuda, New York  Apr 2010

Wine Enthusiast

America's 100 Best Wine Restaurants: Wine Enthusiast 2012

Tim Atkin Blog

See Tim Atkin Blog: Best Wine Bars in New York City

Schiller’s Favorite Jazz Clubs

Village Vanguard
178 7th Avenue
A top club. No food.

Blue Note
Aged megastars.
131 West Third Street

315 West 44th Street
A top club. Used to be in 104th Street and moved to Times Square.

Arthur’s Tavern
57 Grove Street
No entry fee. One of the oldest Jazz Clubs in New York (since 1937)

Schiller’ Favorites

This posting is part of the Schiller’s favorites series. Here is a full list of all Schiller’s favorites postings so far.

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars and Other Wine Spots in Vienna, Austria

Schiller’s Favorite Spots to Drink Wine in Vienna, Austria (2011)

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in San Francisco, USA

Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars in Bordeaux (City), France

Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars in Budapest, Hungary

Schiller’s 12 Favorite Restaurants of Antananarivo, the Capital of Madagascar

Schiller's Favorite Apple Wine Taverns in Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Taverns in Mainz, Germany

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars and Other Places where you can have Wine in Mainz, Germany (2011)

Schiller's Favorite Wine Bars and Other Places Where You Can Have a Glass of Wine in Healdsburg, California

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in London, UK

schiller-wine: Related Postings

New York Manhattan Wine Bars -- Bar Boulud, The Ten Bells, Terroir and Clo.

Artisanal Fromagerie, Bistro and Wine Bar in New York City

Wine bar: Paris, Berlin, New York City, London

In the Glass: 2007 Riesling trocken from Wuertz Rheinhessen with Oysters at the Ten Bells in the Lower East Side in Manhattan

Terroir(s) Wine Bars in London, New York and San Francisco – Wines with a Sense of Place versus Natural Wines


  1. Glad you made it to Roberta's, it's a place with a fascinating vibe!

    1. Thanks for the recommendation. Cheers. Christian

  2. The main event of the Rieslingfeier 2013 takes place at Rouge Tomate, 10 East 60th Street, off of Fifth Avenue. Michelin starred restaurant.

  3. Lettie Teague praises Vanguard Wine Bar, which just opened in New York City’s Murray Hill neighborhood.

  4. Das mit drei Michelin-Sternen dekorierte New Yorker Spitzenrestaurant »Le Bernardin« wälzt umfassende Expansionspläne und rückt den langjährigen Chefsommelier Aldo Sohm in den Mittelpunkt. Besitzer Eric Ripert will ab dem nächsten Jahr eine anspruchsvolle Weinbar sowie einen riesigen Private Dining-Bereich eröffnen. Die neuen Gasträume sollen mit einer Fläche von über 1000 Quadratmetern sehr großzügig gestaltet werden. Das Erdgeschoss soll ganz auf den österreichischen Sommelier-Weltmeister maßgeschneidert werden und auch seinen Namen tragen: »Aldo Sohm Wine Bar«.

  5. Eric Asimov, October 2013, in the New York Times: His 12 best restaurants in New York for wine.

  6. December 2013 - USA Today:

  7. I hate paying full price for anything. For restaurant deals and bar specials in NYC try my book 365 Guide New York City. I want everyone to enjoy the city that I love at a fraction of the price.

  8. Very efficiently written information. It will be priceless to anybody who uses it, together with myself. Sustain the good work – for positive i will try extra posts.

  9. New York Times August 2014:

  10. A most interesting addition to the New York Winebar scene : Aldo Sohm @aldosohm 5h WELCOME! “@sohmbar: It's official...OPEN for LUNCH & DINNER!! 153 West 51st St in the galleria.