Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Pictures: Christian G.E. Schiller with Oliver Donnecker (Heimat)

In Frankfurt am Main, when I just want to have a drink, I have 4 options.

First, I can drive over to Mainz and go to one of the many excellent wine taverns there. Wines tend to be entry level wines from the region.

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Taverns in Mainz, Germany

Second, I can drive to the Rheingau or Rheinhessen and go to a Strausswirtschaft at a winery. Only the wine maker’s wines are served.

“Hoffest” (Winery Party) at Weingut Heinrich Baison in Hochheim, Rheingau - Best of Riesling 2010 Award Winner

Pictures: Römer and Frankfurt at Night

Third, I can go to an apple wine tavern in Frankfurt.This would be an evening with apple wine served in a Bembel.

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

Fourth, I can go to a wine bar in Frankfurt am Main. This posting provides an overview of the wine bars in Frankfurt am Main. The wine bars are ordered alphabetically.

This posting is a revised version (update) of a posting of last year.

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Frankfurt am Main, 2013, Germany

Schiller’s Favorite Wine Bars in Frankfurt am Main


A hip place - in fact, a trio of a fine-dining Italian restaurant, a bar and a casual bistro - where yuppies like to hang out. In the summer, the large terrace is an asset. Christoph Kubenz, who used to cook at schauMahl in Frankfurt/Offenbach, now is in charge at Biancalani, which has 15 toques in the Gault Millau.

At this point, Biancalani is partly closed and being remodeled. When it opens later this year, the small bistro space will be the fine dining restaurant, the bar will more or less remain as it was and the large Italian restaurant space will become a wine tavern, where the Biancalani wines (and probably others) will be served. (The owner of Biancalani owns and runs a winery in Tuscany).

Walther-von-Cronberg-Platz 7-9

Picture: Christoph Kubenz and Christian G.E. Schiller at schauMahl

Bockenheimer Weinkontor

The Bockenheimer Weinkontor is a true original, located in the basement of the rear building. People here sit on wine crates instead of chairs. The place is never empty, but you can always find somewhere to sit. Service is at the counter only. The wines are good, but not more. Small snacks are served, such as bread with salami or cheese. You find here the university/1968er crowd.

Schloßstrasse 92 Hinterhaus (Rear building)

Brasserie An der Alten Oper

A typical French brasserie with French food and French-speaking waiters, with a sizable bar area, which is popular with bankers for after work-drinks and with middle-aged people for a glass of wine in the later afternoon. Former European Central Bank President, the late Wim Duisenberg, was a regular here when he was at the helm of the ECB.

Opernplatz 8
Alte Oper

Picture: Brasserie an der Alten Oper

Brasserie du Sud

A bistro and large wine bar, with a comfortable terrace. The wine list is excellent, with a strong focus on German and other old world wines, perhaps 100 wines, with about 20 by the glass. The menu is brasserie-style.

Oppenheimer Landstraße 31

Coq au Vin

“C’est correct” would my French friend say. Nothing spectacular, but good French cooking and a range of French wines at reasonable prices. Coq au Vin also has a nice bar area, where good French wines are served.

Wallstrasse 19 (The restaurant recently relocated)
Sachsenhausen (next to Lobster)


A wine tavern in the basement of a house built in 1780. For many years, the room was used as a cellar to age apple wine, before Peter Duenker opened his wine wine tavern in 1948. Today, it is run by Christoph and Susanne Duenker. Nice outside area up at the entrance of the cellar.

The wine portfolio includes 300 wines, including 60 by the glass. Interesting, good wines, but you do not find premium wines. Most wines by the glass are Euro 3, some are less than Euro 2. Small bites to eat.

Berger Straße 265

Edelfisch (for lunch only)

Edelfisch is a specialty gourmet food retailer/wholesaler. This supermarket type store has a bar area, which is very popular for lunch. You can order any bottle from the wine section of the store. In addition, 6 to 8 interesting wines by the glass.

Lärchenstraße 101

Frankfurter Botschaft

Frankfurter Botschaft - with a very nice view of a marina - is a hip indoor and outdoor restaurant, with a beach area with large chairs and couches. The wine list is interesting. A nice place for an after dinner glass of wine.

Westhafenplatz 6-8


A traditional Frankfurt brasserie, with a wonderful, cozy atmosphere. It has been a Frankfurt “classic” for more than 40 years. Popular with the 1968 generation crowd as well as the gay scene. You can get local favorites like Handkas mit Musik (fresh cheese marinated with herbs), but also great spins on the classics like a curried lamb shank.

I have only gone there for a full meal and have not paid attention to the bar area. But I was told that “there is always very interesting people at the bar and the wines are not bad”.

Lenaustrasse 97


Viewed from the outside, this glass pavilion looks almost like the diner in Edward Hopper’s famous painting “Nighthawks.” The menu is small but the food is top notch. Heimat has 15 toques in the GaultMillau Restaurant Guide 2013. You can watch Chef Gregor Nowak work in the kitchen right from your bar stool.

Picture: Chef Gregor Nowak

Heimat is probably the best wine bar in town. A stunning wine list. Sommelier and Co-owner Oliver Donnecker is one of the best, if not the best, sommeliers in town. But if you show up between 7 pm and 9 pm, you are expected to eat. And you need to make a reservation.

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Berliner Str. 70
Willy Brandt Platz


Incantina is a place where you can enjoy the cuisine and the wines of Emilia Romagna. It is mainly a restaurant with a small bar area. The wine list offers wines from over 240 different winemakers, members of the Enoteca Regionale Emilia Romagna.

Marco Giovanni Zanetti: This is life in Italy. This place all the good things from the Emilia Romagna area. They have a huge selection of Sangiovese and Lambrusco wines. Simply amazing home style Italian cuisine!

Picture: Christian G.E. Schiller with Marco Giovanni Zanetti

Taunusstrasse 6


This is very much a Parisian Bistro, where people go to eat. The menu is very down to earth; don't expect new and innovative French cooking but rather traditional recipes well executed.

There is a small bar area, with 6 bar chairs. There are also a couple of bar tables, where you can stand. Good, but not extensively large selection of German and other European wines.

Wallstraße 21

Paris’ Bar and Café

For newcomers, this seems to be a French wine bar. But it is not. It is the wine bar of Paris Kosmidis, a film maker, author and journalist from Greece. He is usually there in the evening. Look out for a man with grey hair and chat with him about wine, art, theater or whatever.

You can have breakfast there in the morning, and cheese, cold cuts and vegetables during the day and in the evening. They do not have a kitchen and everything is prepared in a little corner of the bar.

Picture: Paris' Bar and Café

Paris' Bar and Café offers about a dozen wines by the glass. The focus is clearly on German, Austrian and Spanish wines. As often in Europe, New World Wines are not popular with the crowd that you meet at Paris' Bar and Café.

We always try to sit at the communal bar table in the middle of the bar and meet nice people there. If you want to shift from grape wine to apple wine, the national drink of Frankfurt am Main, two of the many cider brasseries are just around the corner, Adolf Wagner and Gemahltes Haus, on Schweizer Strasse.

Wine Bar: Paris Bar and Cafe in Frankfurt am Main

Oppenheimer Landstraße 27
Sachsenhausen, Schweitzer Platz


Just around the corner of the Heimat and also similar in terms of approach and aspirations. Chef Milan Seidenfaden has previously cooked at the 1 star Michelin level in the Restaurant Francais.
Owner and Sommelier Philipp Degenhardt is very knowledgeable in terms of wine. He has 6 excellent wines by the glass and 300 by the bottle, with a strong focus on premium dry German and red German wines, all selected by Philipp.

Berliner Straße 72
Willy Brandt Platz

Rollander Hof

Popular hang-out for senior citizens, who want to chat with others and not break their bank account. Wines are very reasonably priced. It is a wine tavern and closes when the Kleinmarkthalle closes.

Hasengasse 5-7


Good, trendy neighborhood restaurant with a large bar area. Perhaps 40 seats and a long bar counter. When Eintracht Frankfurt plays, they pull out a large screen and show the game.

Chef and Owner is Norman Holub who used to cook at fine dining restaurants like Emma Metzler. The food is Frankfurt classics, with a modern interpretation of Norman. Sunday is bar-day, where only food from the bar menu is served. Norman Holub knows what he is doing and this is also evident in his wine list, which includes a good number of excellent wines by the glass.

Wuerzburger Strasse 38

Picture: Christian G.E. Schiller and Gernot Dorsch of Frankfurt/Wein, one of the best Wine Stores in Frankfurt am Main, who is a Regular at Vadder.

Vai Vai

A hip place. You can chose between 3 (indoor) seating areas: A dining area that boasts steaks, pastas and Italian fare, a lush lounge area and a large bar area. In the summer, there is also a large side walk area. The wine list is interesting.

Grueneburgweg 16

Picture: Christian G.E. Schiller and Vai Vai Boss Goran Petreski.


A wine tavern housed in a wine cellar that was built in the 1890s und used until the late 1900s to store wine in one of the alleys off the Goethestrasse (Fressgass’). The food is typical German. The wine list is not bad, with a number of interesting German wines by the glass (at decent prices). I am sure, Japanese tourists love the place because of the authentic wine cellar eating and drinking experience. Also nice for a glass of wine and a late night snack after a show at the Alte Oper, which is nearby.

Kleine Hochstraße 9
Alte Oper

Walon, Rosetti and Cie

Bar and restaurant. This venture of Henry Walon (Sugar) und Radu Rosetti (Founder of Kingka-Club) is a new meeting place for those in Frankfurt who are hip. The Bahnhof district used to be a large and popular large red light district, but the area is being gentrified. Other in-places like Maxie Eisen and a popular fish restaurant are around the corner. Walon, Rosetti and Cie has a long bar counter. The wine list is interesting. On warm days, people also hang out on the side walk in front of the restaurant.

Moselstrasse 23


Arguably the best wine bar (in a narrow sense) in town. It is owned and run by Ulrich Kabiersch, who knows his wines. Pleasant atmosphere, excellent wines (200) and good bar food - cheese and charcutterie. In the summer, very nice outside area.

Clemensstraße 3

Weingut der Stadt Frankfurt

Frankfurt am Main in Germany is known for its international airport and its banks, but it is not known to be a wine city. Yet, the city of Frankfurt owns a wine estate: Weingut der Stadt Frankfurt. That the city of Frankfurt is in the winemaking business goes back to the secularization (the expropriation of the church and transfer of the assets to the state) that took place under Napoleon at the beginning of the 1800s. In the course of the secularization, the city of Frankfurt became the owner of the Carmelite Monastery, which had existed right in the middle of Frankfurt since 1246. With the monastery came its winery and vineyards. The Weingut der Stadt Frankfurt was borne (in 1803). he Weingut der Stadt Frankfurt was borne (in 1803).

Pictures: Christian G.E. Schiller at Weingut der Stadt Frankfurt

You can drink the wines of the Weingut der Stadt Frankfurt all year round in the Weinstube im Roemer - the historic Frankfurt town hall. The Weinstube im Roemer is a nice wine tavern which offers good, hearty food from the Frankfurt area, such as Handkaes mit Musik, Fleischwurst mit Brot and Rippchen mit Kraut. The Weinstube im Roemer only serves wines from the Weingut der Stadt Frankfurt.

Wine in Frankfurt am Main? - Weingut der Stadt Frankfurt, Germany

Weinstube im Nordend

Same owner and concept as Weinstube in Sachsenhausen (see below).

Eckenheimer Landstr. 84

Weinstube in Sachsenhausen

A cosy wine tavern, with a good selection of basic wines and local food. You pick your wine and your food at the bar counter. This is an excellent choice if you want to chill and relax, but not if you are looking for an interesting wine. In the summer, nice side walk area.

Brückenstrasse 35


A hip wine bar. Guests sit on leather couches alongside the bar’s window front or down along the bar. The wine list comprises some 40 interesting wines, including two dozen wines by the glass. The Westbar does not serve meals, but snacks such as tapas and cheese plates. The international clientele of the Westbar certainly mirrors the demographic makeup of its home, the Westend. Most regulars seem to live or work in the neighborhood. The Westbar also has outside seating.

Myliusstraße 48


Westlage is a wine and regional specialities store cum winebar. All wines are from the Pfalz area. The focus is on young, unknown, innovative winemakers.

I love the Weinbar Abend on Wednesday; Westlage stays open until 11 pm and on a warm summer day people gather on the sidewalk in front of the store wherever they find space. On other weekdays, Westlage closes at 8 pm.

Grüneburgweg 92

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  1. piccolo. Bornheimer Landstrasse 56. Good selection of wines from around the world. Tapas-style food. Popular after work place.

  2. Wein Schirn. Römerberg 8. Yelp: Excellent place to enjoy a glass of wine with an accompaniment of flatbreads. The owner is friendly, great wine selection with local whites, rose and red. Pleasant outdoor seating and tucked away just behind the touristic bustle of the romer/Dom area