Whether you’re looking for wine to enjoy at an elegant dinner party, for a housewarming gift or to toast during a celebration, visit these East Village wine shops to find the perfect bottle for the occasion. By Sarah Shaker.
Alphabet City Wine Co.
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Alphabet City Wine Co. is a charming wine shop on Avenue C. The always friendly staff are also knowledgeable – helping you discover new wines with nightly tastings and food pairing suggestions. Their slogan, “Wine To The People,” rings true as they offer high quality, yet affordable wines, from $10 – $20 per bottle. On the same corner, stop by the recently opened Alphabet City Beer Co., opened by one of the wine shop owners to round out your alcohol needs.
Feeling nostalgic for your semester abroad in Barcelona? Tinto Fino, a quaint Spanish wine shop, offers a variety of wines from regions throughout Spain right in the heart of the East Village. Samples are offered, which is always helpful when choosing a new wine. The sweet sparkling wines are perfect to toast friends at a summer rooftop party, while the heavier reds and crisp whites are a must for any dinner gathering. Tinto Fino offers four wine clubs, for those enthusiastic to join when the “thirst for Spanish wines has become insatiable.”
Astor Wines & Spirits
If you’re looking for a wine shop with a large selection and supermarket feel, visit Astor Wines and Spirits. There’s a vast range of wines, organized by region and price. Make sure to get a cart, as you will be tempted to fill it up. There is always a display of the “Top Ten under $10”, as well as Staff Picks, when the large room of bottles feels overwhelming. You can also give the gift of a Monthly Wine Club, which ranges from $24.99 per month for novices to $599.99 per month for the most sophisticated palates.
Discovery Wines carries both budget bottles and pricey party wines, many from small production artisanal producers. If you’re interested in looking beyond the established brands or want to sip organic, the staff can help you discover something new and special.
When in doubt – or in a rush through Union Square’s madness – there’s always Trader Joe’s Wine Shop, for cheapies. “Two Buck Chuck” may not be classy, but you can buy it in cases and have it delivered throughout Manhattan for your big backyard BBQ. All of the wines at Trader Joe’s are inexpensive; so try a few each time you stop by.