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Feb 17, 2008 02:01 PM

Wine Junkie...Need Recs

So I was shopping around the dusty wine cellar on Charles and was wondering where are the best wine stores in the city. I am particularly looking for French wines Bordeaux, Pouilly-Fumes, etc. Also stores that carry wine that has some age and is ready to drink are a plus
( I'm not good at stashing bottles for 10 years). Thanks for any tips...

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  1. Marty's is my "special needs" go-to spot, they have a very good selection. Located at Commonwealth and Harvard in Alston and on Washington Street in Newton. I've seen a variety of other places recommended on Chowhound in the past, so you might do a search for this.

    1 Reply
    1. re: steinpilz

      Both Marty's and Brookline Liquor have fairly good selections of older French wines. Brookline has a mailing list you might want to get on.

      For dining out, you might want to try Troquet; which has a wine list with very reasonable markups on the wines that you prefer.

    2. We have had great success with Berman's in Lexington. I admit that we do buy young wine and let it age for 10 years in the cellar, but for last minute special occasions, they have always come through for us. Get on their mailing list. They send out fliers announcing some very aggressive sales about twice a year.

      1. I'm not generally a high-end buyer -- so for our everyday needs, Atlas Liquors in Medford is terrific -- but when I need nice bottles for a special occasion, and I'm out that way, Lower Falls Wine Co. in Wellesley is excellent. Very knowledgeable staff, and especially good at giving suggestions re: pairing w/specific menus.

        1. This is one of those rare questions with a single correct answer: Brookline Liquor Mart. This is their niche, and they have been doing without compromise for decades. Be sure to check out the "rare" room, with top shelf wines organized by year going way way back.

          There are a number of other places that also do a great job, on a smaller scale. Wine & Cheese Cask in Somerville (Cambridge line, near Harvard). Blanchard's in Allston actually has some good aged selections. Marty's in Allston is worth a look (I understand their main store in Newton is better, but I've never been). Gordon's and Wine Cellar of Silene, both in Waltham. Ball Square Fine Wines in Somerville. Lower Falls in Newton. Post Road in Sudbury. Kappy's in Medford (or is it Everett?)

          Happy hunting!

          7 Replies
          1. re: jajjguy

            Wine and Cheese Cask: yes. This is it.

            1. re: litchick

              i think wine & cheese cask has a great selection & is convenient to my house but the people that work there (mostly at the register) are so unpleasant i find myself going to mall discount in fresh pond instead.

              1. re: mr mangia

                sorry to hear they rub you that way. there's a certain old school cambridge service worker "aesthetic" that can seem a little bit adversarial. i think the right way to see it is as them reserving their right to be in a bad mood at work. which is fine with me, since they don't seem to take it out on customers. hey, i'm usually in a bad mood at work... i will say that the floor staff at the cask has always been quite cheerfully helpful, and knowlegeable.

                1. re: mr mangia

                  Gah! Bad service? I can see it of the counter workers, they do get a little snippy sometimes. But I tell you truly Mr. Mangia, never ever ever have I had better service in terms of knowlegable, smart, charming excellent suggestions than what I've gotten from the Wine-N-Chz-Cask back room guys. Especially the older dude who hangs out in main wine area -- I think he's the owner. We have waked in, said "Duck with cherries for dinner. Wine for under $15," and have had him give us no less than three terrific suggestions. They've never steered us wrong, and MrLit will stand firmly by his assertion that there may be places with wider selections overall, but you won't find anywhere else that has a larger assortment of absolutley worthy wines in the $7-15 range. Lots of good upper end stuff, too, which we *do* buy -- but it's really nice to go somewhere looking for a lovely $10 red and not get the upsell to the only moderately decent $20 bottle.

                  So, my apologies for your snarky encounters there. I urge you to try again. Ignore the counter jockies and go chat with the nice older dude.

                  1. re: litchick

                    I agree the back room guys are great in suggestions & selection too. i will get over it soon, they have too many treats in there to hold a grudge !

              2. re: jajjguy

                If you're in Medford, I would check out Grape Vine Travelers in Medford Square in addition to Kappy's. It is a small shop but they have a nice selection. Maureen (I think she is usually there only on weekdays) has given us wonderful advice in the past.

                1. re: jajjguy

                  I 2nd Gordon's. They are known for their selection of French wines.

                2. Don't ignore Federal Wine downtown. Very strong on selection (France, Italy, California, Spain) and many older vintages available if you ask. Great advice as well.