Arrowine - the best spot for wines and cheeses in Arlington?
New to the area...been here for a little over a year...and haven't been able to find too many places with similar selection and as good a customer service. Prices can be pretty steep though.
Can anyone recommend other options in the area? Just want to see what else is out there.
For Italian wines only, you might want to look at The Italian Store located at the intersection of Lee Hwy and Spout Run. Tasty food is a bonus to your wine search.
I am a semi-frequent visitor to the Italian Store for their subs and selections of meats. I'll have to take a closer look at their wines the next time I am there.
I've been going to Arrowine for years and have never been disappointed with either the service or products. They have one of the nicest and knowledgeable staff I've had the pleasure to befriend. For another good cheese place, you ought to give Cheesetique (www.cheesetique.com) a try. It's an independent place as well, located in Del Ray, Alexandria. The proprietress, Jill, is also a very warm person. It's a small shop, but the staff is very attentive.
Make sure you get on the e-mail list for Arrowine. Thet offer weekly e-mail specials. Over the course of a month or two they will hit every price range, with some sub $10 per bottle if you buy by the case. We buy almost all of our wine from Arrowine, and generally buy it by the case from the e-mail specials. Doug Rosen has never steered us wrong yet.
The e-mail also lets you know the weekly cheese specials. Although the cheese offerings are not as extensive as you might find at Whole Foods, I find it to be a more select and interesting grouping.
I do not think you are going to find anything better in Arlington. Have you tried MacArthur Beverages over in DC? It is just about 5 minutes or so over the Chain Bridge. They have a very good wine selection and also offer specials. They are also your closest best bet for spirits as an alternative to the larcenous Virginia ABC stores.
I've shopped for wine in DC for 25 years, and now do virtually 100% of my business at Arrowine. In my opinion, they offer the broadest and most thoughtful selection of affordable wines in the area. Doug Rosen, the owner, is a treat to work with, as is most of his staff including Michael and _____(I forgot the other guys name). I encourage you to introduce yourself and let them get to know you.
There are some caveats here. Doug completely rejects the Parker/Wine Advocate/Etc point system, arguing that they cater only to a particular fruit-forward taste. Secondly, he tends to be a little franco-centric, particularly Loire and Languedoc (sp?). Both of those traits are fine with me, but may disappoint the Cali Merlot buyer.
The cheese counter is grand, and about 2/3 the price of Balducci's. There are rumors that he plans to remodel the entire store and add more food offerings, including an old-fashioned butcher.
<Doug completely rejects the Parker/Wine Advocate/Etc point system > - that is very encouraging. I've noticed more and more wines Paker likes are tasting like cough medicine, esp California bottles. Too much alchohol, too much fruit and no nuance. I have wanted to check this place out for years and still have not made it . Now it's a mission.