San Diego Wine Bars
A Guide to the Top Wine Bars in San Diego
Vin De Syrah Spirit & Wine Parlor - Gaslamp
901 Fifth Ave
San Diego, CA 92101
Specialty: Have you ever thought to yourself “I would really like to spend time at a wine bar with an Alice in Wonderland theme?” No? Well it’s about time you start. The Alice in Wonderland theme is very obvious once you spot it, and it’s a nice getaway from the typical wine bar. It’s a great place to have fun with friends or meet new ones.
Good: Alice in Wonderland theme is presented very skillfully, and is a great distraction from the typical wine bar. Great place to hang out with people. Casual attire is accepted, encouraging people to just come in and have a good time.
Bad: Can be very crowded. Not a good place to go to if you’re just looking for a quiet night out.
Jake’s on 6th – A Wine Bar - Hillcrest
3755 6th Ave (between Evans Pl & Robinson Ave)
San Diego, CA 92103
Specialty: Jake’s is the place to go to if you’re looking for great deals while still experiencing the wine bar feel. Happy Hour lasts from 4-7pm every day, and you can get a fruit & cheese platter, along with a glass of wine, for only $10. The prices will encourage you to come back every day after work, but the casual atmosphere and friendly servers will make you want to stay.
Good: Happy Hour deals make what is typically an expensive venture very affordable. The casual atmosphere and friendly servers give Jake’s a unique feel.
Bad: Jake’s is not for someone who is looking for rare or exotic wines, since the wine list is somewhat limited.
Wine Steals - Hillcrest
1243 University Ave (between Richmond St & Vermont St)
San Diego, CA 92103
Specialty: Wine Steals is a great place to catch up with friends and grab a bite of pizza. During Happy Hour, pizza is $2 a slice and many wines are only $4. If that’s not reason enough to celebrate with friends, there are many opportunities for wine tastings every week, including the ability to sample 10-15 wines for only $10 on Saturdays.
Good: Good place to catch up with friends for a bite. Happy Hour deals make drinking affordable. Wine tastings give you an opportunity to sample many wines for almost nothing.
Bad: Tables are essentially wine barrels with tabletops on them, making for a fairly uncomfortable experience. Not a very romantic atmosphere.
Splash Wine Lounge - North Park
3043 University Ave (between Ohio St & Grim Ave)
San Diego, CA 92104
Specialty: Splash delivers an experience unlike any other wine bar. Splash uses a card system where you can pour yourself wine out of the 72 different self-serve stations, allowing you to pour yourself wine in any amount you want. Looking for just a “splash” of wine? If you hit the self-serve button once, you will get one ounce of wine. Want a whole glass? Just hit it 5 times. Don’t let this self-service attitude dissuade you though: you can get a full-service experience as well! If you like a wine that you’ve tasted, you can buy it by the bottle at a discounted rate.
Good: One of the best places around to sample a variety of wines. Self-serve concept is unique and definitely something that everyone should try at least once. There’s a great atmosphere as well.
Bad: The wines are fairly expensive, but that’s to be expected since they need to maintain 72 wines for tasting.
The Cask Room - East Village
550 Park Blvd - Suite 2104
San Diego, CA 92101
Specialty: The Cask Room, with its comfortable leather couches and mood lighting, is the perfect spot for a romantic evening. Not only is the atmosphere relaxing, but the food is impeccable as well. This should be one of your first choices if you are looking to take your date out for dinner.
Good: Ambiance is warm and inviting, making it very romantic. Seating is very comfortable as well, leading you to want to stay forever. Food is outstanding.
Bad: Some food is a little expensive, but it’s all very delicious.