December 29, 2014
Great By-The-Glass Wine Lists
You may have thought ordering wine by the bottle in restaurants is a better value than ordering by the glass. And that used to be true. But that was before the Coravin came along—with its revolutionary technology, restaurants are now able to pour hundreds of wines by the glass that weren’t economically feasible previously. Want to try a sip of that crazy expensive Bordeaux but can’t afford the whole bottle? No problem. Itching for a taste of that legendary Sauternes, but only need enough to pair with your foie gras dish? Easy. So where are the best places to drink by the glass in America? Here are four of our favorites:
1. Mulino a Vino (NYC): This Manhattan newcomer uses their Coravin with wild abandon, pouring every single wine on their list with the device—that’s 50 wines for oenophiles scoring at home. With an Italian-only list, expect lesser-known offerings not often seen in the States, like Sicilian Zibibbo and multiple vintages of heavyweights like Sassicaia. The wines are even rolled out on a special cart before being individually aerated and served.
2. Minibar (DC): With a menu as evolving and exciting as Minibar’s (chef José Andrés' innovative tasting-menu-only hotspot), it’s no surprise wine director Andy Meyers offers 85 percent of his 75-bottle-strong wine list by the half or full glass with Coravin. Pairings have never tasted so good—especially considering the rare offerings you’ll find here, from Domaine de la Foliette Muscadet up to Comtes Lafon Grand Cru Le Montrachet.
3. Miller Union (Atlanta): At this Southern-influenced eatery, the wine is sourced just like the farm-fresh food—it’s mostly small producers who grow biodynamically, organically and sustainably. Neal McCarthy, co-owner and sommelier, strives to provide wine from as many regions as possible on his by-the-glass list, which spans 24 wines that rotate every few months. Look for Ploussard from Jura, 2006 Barolo and Sicilian Grillo.
4. The Barrel Thief (Seattle): On any given night, you’ll find nearly 175 wines by the glass at this wine and whiskey bar revered for its variety. Whether you’re looking for an easy $6 glass of house chardonnay or to splurge on a $70 glass of Château d'Yquem, owner Christopher Gronbeck has you covered, though most glasses cap out at $12 making it one of the most affordable watering holes in town. Drink your way around the world from Washington to Turkey, Italy to Israel as part of the DIY tasting flights.