New Yorkers’ Choice: The Best Wine Bars In NYC

Ask me to describe my ideal wine bar and the key words you would get are: exposed-brick, rustic, French, candlelight, and nibbles that include goat cheese tarts and ricotta drizzled in honey.  Bonus points for Mason jars on the table filled with mini daisies…or Mason jars that actually serve as wine glasses.  (What can I say?  I’m a Southern girl at heart!)



However, I know that’s not all New Yorkers’ cup of tea glass of wine, so I turned to you, our loyal readers, and asked what your favorite spots in the city were to enjoy a glass of vino and why.  I was delighted by the responses, many of which I had never even heard of before, let alone tried.  The bar that got mentioned the most times was a little gem tucked away on 50th Street between 2nd and 3rd Avenues, Sofia Wine Bar.  Here’s what some of you said about it:

@michtara Sofia Wine Bar…it’s so cozy!

@Thirsty_Kitten  LOVE @SofiaWineBar…island of hospitality in #midtowneast. Superb service, wine list, homemade lasagna.

I bundled up and headed over to experience this cozy island of hospitality myself.  Here’s the verdict:


-It was 8pm on a Thursday night and the place was packed.  I didn’t have the foresight to make a rezzie, but the host/waiter was awesome enough to separate two tables and get us seated immediately.  I do love speedy service.

-The decor was right up my alley.  In lieu of daisies they had mini-poinsettias on the table (tis the season, eh?), but the candlelight, exposed brick, and French linen napkins were all there.  Even the outside of the building was strung with twinkle lights, which I’m ALWAYS a fan of, Christmas season or not.



-The food and wine: perfecto.  My favorite dishes were the Bruschetta Trio and the Tartufo Chocolate Lava Cake.  And the bottle of La Gerla Brunello di Montalcino, of course.  From dark raspberries to French oak, this medium body wine is one that would make any wine lover’s mouth happy.




-It was LOUD.  Seriously, with the amount of noise going on, I felt more like I was dining at an Irish pub than a cozy wine bar.  The music was blasting, and it was more of the genre you’d expect to hear at a Chelsea club rather than an intimate wine bar.  Granted, we were seated in the front of the restaurant near the bar, so maybe the back dining room is a bit more my volume.  Regardless, I’d definitely return to find out for sure.



Here’s other reader-reccomended wine bars throughout the city:



@CulturedChaosNY Amelie Wine Bar in the village. Great little French place. Staff is amazing. And their happy hour is the best I’ve found.  (Editor’s Note: Been here and love it.  It’s got a rosy hue, and the European style seats at the back of the restaurant are perfect for a romantic rendezvous.)
@_pooperscooper @Lelabar -an awesome wine bar in the West Village. Can’t go wrong w/ amazing wine, legit food & friendly, knowledgeable staff!
@denvernicole For South African: xai xai!  (Editor’s Note: Fantastic Midtown location, tucked away on a quieter side street.  Perfect for a post-theater night cap.)
@kale1919 Shalel on 70th and Columbus!
@GranducaNYC We have a good selection of Sicilian wines: We Offer A Drinkable Sicilian Intensity.  (Editor’s Note:  If you’re looking for a place where you can comfortably cozy up on a couch, this Flatiron spot is for you.  It also feels much less claustrophobic squished than many of the wine bars you’ll experience in the city.)
@actorbrian St. Patricks Cathedral has good wine, but they only let you take one sip at a time!


@devourNYC Pinkerton & d.o.c wine bar in Williamsburg are my go to wine bars.


@Bklynz_Poet @Winegasm_: Staff is knowledgeable in the #vino game. Pair anything to everything, and attentive. Another great thing about it is the setup. Have your Sex And The City troop with you? Big communal table. Date night? Cozy nooks.
@NewYorkPhotoGal Best wine bar hands down: Mosaic Cafe & Lounge in Astoria…Great Wine..Great Cheese..GREAT ATMOSPHERE! Super Romantic 5 stars.

What are we missing?  Share your go-to wine bars below, and we’ll be sure to check them out and report back!

By: Jessica Tiare Bowen




6 Comments on “New Yorkers’ Choice: The Best Wine Bars In NYC

    • Thanks Salika! A very merry Christmas to you too!

    • It definitely is still here! A true NYC staple:-)

  1. I like Sofia. I love Xai Xai as I have South African family who like to go there. Felice on UES is good. 8th Street Wine Cellar in the village is bomb. I am absolutely missing a few of my favorites as it’s too early (yes, 11am is still too early) to remember them right now! (I try not to think about wine until at least 2pm during the workweek! Hehe.)
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    • Haha, love it! Definitely adding Felice onto my list to check out…can never have too many good uptown vino spots!:-)