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Jun 26, 2013 12:56 PM

Help!! Need Wine Tasting Recommendations ASAP!

Hi there,

My husband and I are celebrating our anniversary this Saturday, June 29th at either Tocqueville or Annisa (have reservations at both - have yet to decide). The only reservation times available were later - 9:30 and 10:00 - so it is a late dinner. I want to surprise him with something planned for before dinner. We had talked about going somewhere for cocktails beforehand but I'd like to plan something that is a bit more of an 'event' (for lack of a better word).

Any recommendations for nice wine tasting experiences? Or, a really nice cocktail bar that feels like a little bit of an experience in itself? We'll want to go somewhere nice, as it's a special occasion and we'll be dressed up for dinner. Budget is not a driving factor.

I would really appreciate any suggestions! Thanks in advance!

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  1. Well it's not right before dinner, but Corkbuzz has a class on California wines from 3:30-5:00 on Saturday. I haven't been to any of their classes, but have enjoyed half-priced bottles of bubbly there during their happy hour. ;-)

    Happy Anniversary!

    5 Replies
    1. re: VaPaula

      yeesh...california wines :(

      i live at terroir so i suggest you go there and have them suggest some wines for you. the east village one is walking distance to tocqueville. the tribeca one is a $8 cab ride to annisa.

      1. re: sam1

        Oh please. You're preaching to the choir, dude. (Although I'm trying to broaden my horizons because I know wine styles - and winemaking itself - changes over time. But that's OT). But not knowing the OP or her husband's preferences for wine, and liking Corkbuzz, I thought it was worth mentioning.

        Glad you mentioned Terroir - am probably going to the MH one in a couple weeks since we're staying nearby.

        Nice link, ipse! Saving that one.

        1. re: VaPaula


          ive become such a french wine snob lately but seriously, i just cant drink california wine these days.

          i actually didnt like corkbuzz. felt very corporate and unless you are spending lots of money, i just didnt enjoy the place.

          1. re: sam1

            I hear you. Until recently, under "current drink of choice" in my profile was just "old, red & French." Love the looks of the winelist at Terroir.

            I assume you've been to Rouge et Blanc? The first time my husband and I wandered in there, they had just finished brunch service so we had a glass of wine at the bar. We spent a long time talking to Tom, the sommelier, about French wines, of course.

            Corporate, huh? I thought it felt kind of hip, but I am old and admittedly, don't know from hip. :-)

            1. re: VaPaula

              just felt like i was in an airport bar in denver (at corkbuzz). maybe i should try it again but im not interested in spending $23 for a decent glass of burgundy.

              havent been to rouge et blanc. will definitely finally check them out. thanks for the recommendation.

        1. Okay, your two choices are two of my top picks in Manhattan for a dressy, grown up dinner that is not too tooo fussy (EMP/Per Se etc). If I had to choose between the two It would be hard...

          Both places have great food and wine (I suspect you know this) so I would not want to get there too tipsy as that reduces what you can enjoy with the meal before you're toasted.

          So, I would not do a wine tasting... maybe go to a good wine bar for a taste or a nice midtown hotel for a cocktail or even have a glass of something or a split of champagne at a place near enough by like Gramercy Tavern where the front room is quite quite nice for a drink before dinner

          1. I wouldn't do a wine tasting before dinner - you'll be having wine with dinner, I assume, and you don't want to be tipsy already when you sit down to eat. A cocktail is all I'd do pre-dinner, at most. Which kind of rules out most cocktail bars that take reservations, as they'd be a little unhappy they reserved a table if you're only having one round.

            Annisa's not too far a walk from Pegu Club. But keep in mind, with a 9:30 dining time that means you'd be going for cocktails at 8:30, perhaps... on a Saturday night. Every place, even the crappy ones, will be mobbed.

            Another option if you do Annisa, for before or after dinner: go watch drag queens sing karaoke on the second floor of Stonewall. The drinks aren't great, but the entertainment could be goofy fun.