HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >


Wine Bar/Wine Stores?

I'll be in SF later this week. I live in urban Chicago where there are great wine bars and wine stores. I know there have to be some gems in SF, But I've never had much luck finding SF wine bars or wine stores that might offer interesting stuff--especially stuff that I might not be able to get in Chicago. (If it matters, I prefer red and pinot's my all-time favorite.) Thanks!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Posting Guidelines | FAQs | Feedback
  1. wine bars: Terroir (also a shop), Hidden Vine, Pause, Yield, Hotel Biron (not a hotel), District

    stores: K&L, Biondivino (Italian), Arlequin, Ferry Plaza, SF Wine Trading Co.



    2 Replies
    1. re: Robert Lauriston

      Robert's lists here are spot on and should be regarded as definitive. (Though I'd be happy with just Terroir, and Arelquin).

      1. re: Robert Lauriston

        Barbacco's a restaurant but you can treat it as a wine bar. Its by-the-glass selection is as or more interesting than the other places I listed.


      2. Also, Whole Foods Potrero Hill just opened a beer/wine bar. In addition to the wines and beers they pour, you can buy a bottle upstairs in the store and have them open and serve it for you for a $2 corkage fee. The selection is actually pretty nice, and you can have food as well.

        1. The Ferry Plaza Wine Merchants deserve a modest mention. At the bar, they have wines by the glass, wines by the bottle (it's a wine shop). What I like is that you can sit at the bar, order a cracking good wine and feast on foods you sourced yourself at the Ferry Plaza. They also have their own menu. They are friendly and accommodating. I go during the week, mid-afternoon, so I can avoid crowds.

          4 Replies
          1. re: steve h.

            FPWM's by-the-glass list is longer and more interesting than the last time I went there a few years ago. They close really early, though.


            1. re: Robert Lauriston

              It's an interesting shop. They do close early (8 p.m.?) but the attributes, whether through proximity or attitude, are worth noting. I try to go in mid-afternoon.

            2. re: steve h.

              Swirl on Castro has an eclectic collection, and a small and very friendly wine bar in the back of the store. Probably 20 wines by the glass at any given time, and white or red flight options.

              1. re: lmnopm

                Castro Wine Village is another one -- sort of like the neighborhood Cheers. They specialize in California wines but Keith and Joseph are great. Check it out.

            3. Et Cetera wine bar has a pretty wide selection.

              1 Reply
              1. re: rebeccakinney

                Definitely an interesting list.


              2. Any new interesting wine bars?

                AQ's by the glass list is great, you can treat it as a wine bar.

                Same goes for the counter at Perbacco. The new sommelier Claudio Villani (who left Incanto for Vegas a few years back) has added some high-end Piemontesi wines to the BTG list.

                5 Replies
                1. re: Robert Lauriston

                  How about Et Al? http://www.etalsf.com/

                  1. re: absc

                    Not a helpful web site yet. Spinoff of Biondivino? That's exciting.

                    1. re: Robert Lauriston

                      Exactly. A spin-off of Biondivino. I must admit I had not looked at the website.

                      1. re: absc

                        Have you been? Is this the one that has some connection to Boulette's Larder?

                        1. re: wally

                          I can recommend the wine, but I haven't had food there yet. Tasting Table SF had some nice things to say: http://www.tastingtable.com/entry_det...

                2. The other day, I noticed a new wine bar (at least new to me!) on the north side of Geary Boulevard, just east of Parker in the inner Richmond, SF.

                  This is the place: