- ALREADY SUBSCRIBED?
Fill in your credentials below.
It’s not news in Paris. Residents or people passing through the City of Light usually visit at least one wine bar. They’re great places to taste selections of two or three wines without falling on your face. Knowledgeable bartenders will tell you a bit about what you’re drinking and if their English isn’t the best, your neighbor will fill in the linguistic gaps. And probably make a suggestion or two.
In addition, wine bars are ideal when it comes to meeting others. If nothing else, you have wine in common and that’s always worth discussing. If you speak zero French, Anglophones should head for Willie’s Wine Bar, Juveniles or Fish located in the 6th Arrondissement at 69, Rue Seine (33 (0) 1 43 54 34 69. Expats own all three establishments and attract both English and French speakers.
But the trend has hit Washington big-time. Perhaps it’s because there are so many foreign tourists. Undoubtedly it’s “in” to appreciate wine and know something more about them and what you’re drinking. You can still get a glass of over-priced plonk without even trying, but good wine by the glass is easier to get—and afford—than ever before in the District of Columbia.
Wine bars always serve food. Some serve little more than snacks. Other wine bars serve very good food and frequently will offer food and wine “pairings.” Singles won’t feel alone bellying up to the bar. If they happen to meet someone with whom they want to spend the evening, a little wine-talk can smooth the way, all to the better.
In Paris, you’ll have a chance to improve your French. In DC, who knows, you might find yourself seated next to a high-powered lobbyist. No matter whether you’re a tourist or on business, you may find this an ideal way to spend some time while improving your palette.
A true wine bar should have a system for keeping wine fresh once the bottle is opened unless they’re doing a land-office business. There are many fancy systems that use gas now; several wine bars in Washington have them.
This insures you can sample fresh, light whites and expect them to taste as if they just came out of the cellar. At far too many wine bars, wines are simply re-corked. But if the bottles have not been poured quickly enough, the wine will oxidize. Don’t hesitate to ask for another bottle to be opened. Remember, you’re the customer.
Mark Kuller, a tax attorney who opened Proof, said he paid $50,000 for his Italian Enomatic system that dispenses 32 wines. These machines usually pay for themselves within months since they minimize wine spoilage.
There’s a new in-the-mode way to sample wine termed “flights” which generally are two-ounce pours that cost less but give oeniphiles the opportunity to sample a group of wines that have something in common—maybe Sauvignon Blancs from around the world.
Some DC Wine Bars:
Please take note: Many tend to be noisy since even though the clients may worship wines (or want to know more about them), they are definitely not houses of prayer. All of them listed here have dining rooms as well. Many offer bottles of wine at 50% off on specific nights. It’s worth checking. Some of the establishments offer free tastings with a representative of the distributor presiding over the evening and being on hand to answer questions. Some wine bars have a neat feature—a plastic card that tracks the wines you’ve drunk and gives you a printed record for future reference.
3311 Connecticut Ave. NW
Bistrot Lepic & Wine Bar
1736 Wisconsin Ave. NW
Central Michel Richard
1001 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
1720 14th Street, N.W.
3238 Wisconsin Ave. NW,
60 wine selections (predominantly American)
Mendocino Grille & Wine Bar
2917 M St. NW
“Wine is Proof that God Loves Us”
775 G Street NW
Sonoma Restaurant & Wine Bar
223 Pennsylvania Avenue SE
Veritas Wine Bar.
2031 Florida Avenue NW
1919 M. Street, NW
202 659 1990
If you have a favorite wine bar in Paris or Washington,(or another city), please let me know by sending an email to [email protected]
Keeping up takes a lot of effort and tasting.
© Paris New Media, LLC