Wine bars on Long Island
A half dozen or more wine bars are spread out from Port Washington to Greenport, serving the grape by the glass and bottle, as well as food for pairing. At these congenial gathering spots, imports from France, Italy and Spain compete for your palate with varietals from Long Island and California, as well as wines from lesser-known winemaking nations such as New Zealand, Argentina and Chile. Wait staffs and bartenders offer expertise in wine traditions and etiquette, so all you need do is sit back, close your eyes and drink it all in.
Just don't forget to bring along a designated driver -- and an appropriate toast of your own.
Novitá: 860 Franklin Ave., Garden City, 516-739-7660, novitany.com
Wine selection: More than 100 by the glass, 150 by the bottle
Least expensive glass: $8, Cadonini Pinot Grigio, Graff Riesling and Maigo Reserve Merlot
Most expensive glass: $42, Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon
Menu: New Italian cuisine, with popular dishes such as rigatoni ragu, $16. You can also mix and match a meat and cheese platter, $5 per meat and $4 per cheese.
Vintage Port: 109 Main St., Port Washington, 516-883-1033
Wine selection: 10-15 by the glass, 40-50 by the bottle
Least expensive glass: $7 Gladiator Nero D'avola, Domaine Tariquet Sauvignon Blanc
Most expensive glass: $15 Waters Winery Interlude (Bordeaux blend)
Menu: Cheese boards, $15-$23; steak sandwich with Roquefort cheese, $15
Bin 56: 56 Stewart Ave., Huntington, 631-812-0060
Wine selection: 16 by the glass
Least expensive glass: $8 Malbec, Line 39 Cabernet Sauvignon or Tempranillo Grenache
Most expensive glass: $12 Lyeth Meritage or Chianti Classico
Menu: Tapas-style favorites include falafel crab cakes with tzatziki sauce, $12; a tortilla (Spanish omelet with potato and red onion), $6; and three bite-size chorizo-stuffed cheesebread sliders, $7.
Northport Tasting Room & Wine Cellar: 70 Main St., Northport, 631-261-0642, northportwines.com
Wine selection: 30 by the glass, 110 by the bottle
Least expensive glass: $8 Cinsault
Most expensive glass: $17, Txomin (pronounced Sho-min), from Spain's Basque region
Menu: Cheese, olive or meat plates, plus cheesecake, carrot cake, raspberry mousse cake, all $8, or order in from nearby restaurants.
La Cuvee : Greenporter Hotel, 326 Front St., Greenport, 631-477-0066, thegreenporter.com
Wine selection: 50 by the glass or bottle
Least expensive glass: $8 Cono Sur Cabernet Sauvignon
Most expensive glass: $15 Laurel Lakes Cabernet Reserve
Menu: Choose from 12 appetizers, including oysters or French onion soup, $8-$15. Entrees include mussels with French fries, $16; hand-carved roast beef sandwich with French fries, $16; and steak, $26-$28
Grappa Wine Bar: 62 Main St., Sag Harbor, 631-725-0055, grappawinebar.com
Wine selection: 18 by the glass, 50 by the bottle
Least expensive glass: $8 Banfi Chianti, Sangiovese or Orvieto
Most expensive glass: $18 Brunello
Menu: Italian, featuring an antipasto plate with fire-roasted peppers, caponata, grilled zucchini, roasted cipolline, marinated olives and artichokes for $25. Individual (9-by-6-inch) grilled pizzas, $9.75; spaghettini with veal meatballs, $9-$18.
Learn about wine, too
"Around the World of White Wines": Hofstra University, 516-463-7200, ce.hofstra.edu
White wine lovers ages 21 and older can learn how to pair wine with food, find the best values on bottles and sample international varieties in this course taught by wine expert Robert Windorf.
When: 2-4 p.m. Saturday