71° Good Afternoon
71° Good Afternoon

Cheers to wine bars Molto Vino and Bin 56

Bartender Drew Conroy pours a glass of wine

Bartender Drew Conroy pours a glass of wine at Molto Vino. Wines average $10 a glass. (Feb. 27, 2013) Credit: Doug Young

Bin 56, pouring anew; and Molto Vino, recently uncorked, are a couple of easy-quaffing wine bars. Their uncomplicated food can be good and the beverage selections mostly the same.

Wine bars are a recent growth industry on Long Island.

The markups could make you envy teetotalers. But you're paying for more than a glass.

Molto Vino in Babylon, a stylish and tight storefront, is situated next to Solo Vino, its wine-shop parent. On a weekend night, the wine bar and its few cushioned seats are packed tighter than a case of Chianti.

And Chiantis are among the versatile selections from the uncorkings, which tend toward Italian and American bottles. You'll have to ask about vintages, since only names are on the mirrors behind the bar. Take some time with a Port, try a vermentino or aglianico. The bartender also makes a tasty sangria with tempranillo and syrah. For the contrarian, there are beers on tap. Wines average $10 a glass.

To go with your red or white: a modest selection of panini and salads, cured meats and cheeses. The panino with caramelized onions and pear might improve with Gruyère rather than melted Brie.

And a Beaujolais or dolcetto would be an all-purpose addition.

Dimly lit, loungey Bin 56 in Huntington offers a communal table, a few cushy seats, comedy-night Wednesday and a respectable menu. It has a downtown niche.

Highlights include grilled endive, spicy-sweet chicken wings; fish tacos, albeit with tilapia; spring rolls; fig-Brie-prosciutto crostini and cevapi, or Croatian-style grilled ground meat.

The herbaceous Bibich R6 red blend, from North Dalmatia, is a match for the cevapi; Bibich R5 white with everything else. Wines are typically $8 to $14 a glass. Beer available, too.

A Beaujolais or two would fit in neatly here.


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