Wine & Food

Snooth User: rsimone

Best Kept Secret Wine Lists

Posted by rsimone, Oct 8, 2008.

If you dig enough or dine enough you can find the restaurants around the country that have the best wine lists in that they contain some of the top rated wines as well as some rare ones. Some restaurants of note:

Babbo (NYC)
Guy Savoy (Las Vegas/Paris)
Azul (Miami)

and on and on. The bottom line is that these are the easy ones to find and the most certain destinations to empty your wallet.

What about the little, not too talked about gems that you really need to look for that maybe dont have 1,000's of bottles but some great ones nonetheless. In this post I am looking to start a thread of recommendations based on personal experiences. Whether its that French Moroccan lounge in NYC or a Traditional Spanish restaurant in Miami, I want to know.


Reply by Gregory Dal Piaz, Oct 8, 2008.

What a great topic! I'll have to think about this. I don't frequently buy wine while dining out. I've got a decent cellar so I steer by money towards corkage friendly restaurants!! That is another subject that will be addressed shortly. A BYOB list!

Reply by Eric Guido, Oct 23, 2008.

I'm a big fan of I trulli has a massive list and decent prices

Another place I've frequented here in Queens is place on Metropolitan Ave named La Vigna. This place has a very small list but some amazing bottles and the average mark up is about 5% (NO JOKE). I do bring my own glasses though and I've been hinting to their beverage manager to start keeping the bottles at a better temp. Otherwise, it's a gem of a place for a nice night out with some fine wine at good prices.

Reply by dmcker, Jan 23, 2010.

There's another thread where we have discussed the best easily-accessible wine lists.

When hunting for it to use as reference in yet another thread, I ran across this one. As Greg says, this is a fascinating subject, so I'd be curious to hear if anybody has other places they know of and want to talk about... ;-)

Reply by napagirl68, Jan 23, 2010.

MASSIVE list, but very expensive- lots of library wines... go for the rarities:

Casanova, Carmel, CA

Reply by dmcker, Jan 23, 2010.

I take it Casanova's list is not 'hidden', however... ;-)

Reply by Girl Drink Drunk, Jan 24, 2010.

Dino, in DC, has a great, almost eclusively Italian list. It's wallet friendly, and the owner, Dean, is really into wine and will gladly chat you up.

Reply by napagirl68, Jan 24, 2010.

@ dmcker... yes, not secret, per se, however, a PHENOMENAL list that I wanted to mention. but NOT inexpensive. They specialize in Library wines... we are talking $200-2000 wines here. But you can find some that are extremely rare and elusive....

Sorry if this was off topic. Just wanted to mention. I notice that they do not have wine "book" on their site. But it is damned good if you can afford....

Reply by dmcker, Jan 24, 2010.

The other thread I posted the link for is on good winelists in general. I'm still intrigued by the 'secret' aspect of this one, because I have encountered a number of restaurants, clubs and bars that have such arcane lists, so I was hoping someone would spill the beans, or red wine, about places they know of... ;-)

Reply by jameshull, Jan 25, 2010.

For anyone around or visiting Boston... there is a Tapas restaurant here called "Taberna De Haro" that has an amazing Spanish wine list (the food is also incredible!). The owner, I believe, spent a bunch of time in Spain living and researching etc. The first page of the wine list is dedicated to some aged wines that she has on offer and the rest of the list is a veritable wine bible of spain. Highly, highly recommended!

Reply by amour, Jan 25, 2010.

rsimone....I agree . AZUL at the Mandarin Oriental in MIAMI
has a superb wine list ,...... but is pricy !

Bella Luna and Ocean Prime and Anthony....all in MIAMI, have good enough wine lists,
with fair prices, but are Chilean, Argentine, Italian driven..........
I require French at a fair price or any price ...but in MIAMI that
is the exception rather than the rule. Small wonder...given the demographic make-up
and the strong tourism from South America.(Miami still gets its fair share of Europeans too)
I go regularly to the CARDOZO (owned by Gloria Estefan)

again....Italian wines from around Veneto...Zonin....which hardly
interest me....but I drink their cocktails instead,
which are great!

Best of all, I stay on my terrace, with my fine French wine!

I also frequent my favourite French restaurant...PROVENCAL...
truly French with great wines!

Reply by amour, Jan 25, 2010.

Degustation on 239E 5th (New york) has reasonable prices...
this is a sort of eating parlour.

Reply by amour, Jan 28, 2010.

Just to mention that in 2008, Daniel Boulud opened Maison Boulud in the LEGATION QUARTER in Beijing, China.

Reply by brianburnett, Jan 28, 2010.

LeMistral (great selection of everything French as well as some new world staples), Mark's (not a huge list, but good stuff from everywhere, much of which is hard to come by), and Lynn's (an enormous selection, which you would never expect by the location or the building it's in). All in my hometown of Houston.

Reply by amour, Jan 29, 2010.

Thank you, brianburnett.

Reply by amour, Feb 2, 2010.

Do any of you remember New York's CAFE the West Village
with good wine ....Lafarge Volnay with decent food as well!

Well, how do you like it..........BAR HENRY.....owned by Mr.Kulok.....great wine list
everything good, great, and even will find it!

Lots of ready to drink ones, being sold by the half bottle, and the balance by the glass.
Highlights include 1989 Deydier Chateauneuf-du-Pape Clefs d'Or ! golden keys!

phone# 646 448 4559 90 West Houston St. NY

Reply by The Gourmet Bachelor, Feb 2, 2010.

Definitely support Bar Henry for interesting wine and neighborhood food on Houston (It's on my block Island). Might review it. Although, that accessible half bottle of vintage tasty goodness can turn into about 2 or 3 half bottles quicker than we can say, "Did I just spend $$$ on one more drink on a Tuesday night again?"

Reply by amour, Feb 3, 2010.

COOL !...The Gourmet Bachelor!
Hope to sip with you next time I am in NY!
Just a cool thought !

Reply by amour, Feb 3, 2010.

As you will no doubt see on SNOOTH,
1989 Les Clefs d'Or (Domaine Jean Deydier et Fils CNDP) is out of stock.

The 2000 is still around but has been described
as very "BLOOD/IRON" by some experienced reviewers,
this is even after decanting for half an hour.
A revolting lingering aftertaste!
(This may be controversial!)

I did not taste 2000.

In my opinion it is worth tasting.
In any event, Southern Rhone is, quintessentially......sometimes slightly unfocused,
shall we say.


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