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Aug 3, 2007 01:06 PM

Wine bar on Hoyt and Union?

I hear that it's finally open--has anyone tried it?

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  1. Yes indeed, it's open and it's quite good.

    Here's are my initial impressions, after two visits. Unfortunately I'm not much of a oenophile, so I can't really comment on the selection.

    Ambiance/decor: Excellent. The outdoor seating area is very nice, and since it's on a fairly residential block, you can really relax as you sip whatever it is you're sipping. Inside is very well done: Similarly comfortable, but at the same time fashionable. Excellent lighting and bar. The only slight complaint I had last night was the music, which was a bit loud (although very good). We were in the corner directly beneath the speaker, though, so I'm sure it was ok for everyone else.

    Food: Very good. "Small plates" only, all for $10. If you're looking for large meal, this is probably not the place you want. The regular menu has a selection of 6 things (two salads, a bread-olive-meats plate, a panini pork sandwich, crostini, pate). I've tried everything but the tuna nicoise salad and the pate, and it's all been good, although the sandwich, the crostini and the meats plate have been best thus far. I'm told the nicoise is very good as well. The sandwich is definitely dinner-sized; a friend couldn't finish it last night. They also have specials, which our waitress forgot to tell us about. So there are actually 9 small plates available at any one time.

    They also offer an assortment of cheeses, some of which can be found on the specials menu. They also have oysters, although I haven't tried them yet.

    The dessert we tried was outstanding; warm cinnamon bread with fruit compote and nutella.

    The only thing glaringly missing, as far as I can tell, is coffee/espresso. Our waitress said they're leaning towards adding those things; we can only hope they do.

    Over all, a very pleasant night out. The only things that have bugged me thus far are the slightly loud music, not getting to hear the specials, and, strangely, the language in the menu: The nicoise, which is apparently very good, is written up as being (paraphrasing) "made of really, really expensive canned tuna." Ok, fine, but... suddenly I don't want to order it. If you can just ignore the affected prose, you'll be better off, I think.

    As I said before, the quite nature of the neighborhood really adds a lot to the experience, as does the outdoor area. I'm more concerned with the food, which has been very good thus far.

    5 Replies
    1. re: ORP

      It's a Wine Bar. ... Can we have some word about the wine selection? It's like talking about going to Yankee Stadium and writing about the hotdogs and the seats.

      1. re: bluishgnome

        Nice, way to find fault with my review in exactly the same way I did when I wrote it... in the third sentence. Clearly I agree with you. Still, you could at least have come up with an analogy that works: Anyone who doesn't think the food and seating are really, really important for having a good time at a ball game clearly has never been to one-- It's pretty cool, give it a shot! There are a couple of teams right here in NYC, if you're curious.

        Any way, here's a better link:

      2. re: ORP

        great review, thanks! what's the name of the wine bar?

        1. re: kam0424

          yes, does anyone know the name?

          1. re: curly30

            It's called Black Mountain Wine House. <>. Haven't been myself yet...