Best wine bars

Swirl, sip and snack on small plates at these top venues for vino.

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  • Bar Jamn

  • Bin No. 20

  • Bourgeois Pig

  • Gottino

  • Terroir

Bar Jamn

Bar Jamn
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 E 17th at Irving Pl (212-253-2773, casamononyc.com)

Bar Veloce

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, but you won't have to wait long before a thin-lipped glass is placed in front of you. 175 Second Ave between 11th and 12th Sts (212-260-3200, barveloce.com)

Bin No. 220
This sleek Italian-style wine bar, where banker types devour cured meats, cheeses and olive oil, offers refuge from the South Street Seaport tourist scene. Located on historic Front Street, this TONY Eat Out Award winner boasts cast-iron columns, a polished walnut bar and a nifty metal wine rack that showcases the horizontally stowed bottles. Most patrons come for the selection of 60 wines (20 are available by the glass), but a well-stocked bar satisfies those who prefer the hard stuff. 220 Front St between Beekman St and Peck Slip (212-374-9463)

Blue Ribbon Downing Street Bar
This 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. Attentive bartenders offer friendly guidance with the diverse 250-bottle wine list, which has everything from a $600 Saint Emilion to a $33 Greek robola; diners can sample many more-expensive bottles by the glass. 34 Downing St between Bedford and Varick Sts (212-691-0404, blueribbonrestaurants.com)


This East Village lair was built for romance. The interior is bedecked with a custom glass chandelier and ornate, Louis XIV--style mirrors; apple-red couches are usually crammed with couples; and the food is equally shareable—note the gooey fondues. The international selection of vino is half off on Mondays and Tuesdays (and Friday and Saturdays from 5-7pm), and though liquor is verboten, champagne, beer and wine cocktails—such as the Julip d'Or, consisting of pear-infused brandy, chocolate bitters and Clairette de Die—pick up the slack. 111 E 7th St between First Ave and Ave A (212-475-2246, bourgeoispigny.com)

Casellula Cheese & Wine Caf
At this Hell's Kitchen bar and lounge, you can select from 40 specialty cheeses and an international wine list. The scene gets going around 11:30pm, when Broadway turns off its lights for the evening. Throngs of actors, stage managers, dancers and other theater folks pile in for a bite from the small but sophisticated menu, or a sampling of cheese and an elegant glass of vino. 401 W 52nd St at Ninth Ave (212-247-8137)


Morandi chef Jody Williams partners with owner Michael Bull to open this 40-seat enoteca. Fifty Italian wines are paired with bites like rabbit pot pie with baked chestnuts and baked beets and hazelnuts in parchment paper. 52 Greenwich Ave between Charles and Perry Sts (212-633-2590, gottinonyc.com)


Come to savor Italian vinos paired with such tasty, rustic appetizers as fresh fried artichokes. Owned by the same paesans as the Alphabet City Wine Company, the small cavelike space offers hundreds of regional wines. 215 E 4th St between Aves A and B (212-539-1011, invino-ny.com)

The Jakewalk
The owners of nearby Stinky Bklyn and Smith & Vine solidify their Smith Street empire with this slim orange-and-gold drinkery, packed with BoCoCa denizens. Cheese and charcuterie culled from Stinky make for fine accompaniments to 120 whiskeys and 30-plus wines by the glass (starting at $6). Those prowling for a mixed drink should request the namesake cocktail—the Jakewalk is a stiff, balanced blend of St. Germain, tequila, rum, lime juice and bitters.282 Smith St at Sackett St; Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn (347-599-0294, thejakewalk.com)

Terroir
Oeno-evangelist Paul Grieco (Hearth) preaches the powers of terroir—grapes that express a sense of place—at this sparse wine haunt. The superknowledgeable waitstaff aptly helps patrons navigate the 50 by-the-glass options. Equally compelling was the lineup of wine and beer and restaurant-caliber small plates (sage-wrapped lamb sausages). 413 E 12th St between First Ave and Ave A (wineisterroir.com)

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