One of the things I love about Houston is that we have a huge variety of everything, including wine bars. Are you into an upscale, Euro-centric experience? There’s a wine bar for that. How about a neighborhood bar with gobs of history and great wine? We have one of those, too. Are you overwhelmed by the choices? That’s okay because I have some favorites that I am so excited to share with you! Although my favorite wine bars each have their own take on wine, they all have one thing in common: They enjoy wine, they enjoy sharing it with you, and they are all about having fun with wine.
Camerata at Paulie’s
First up, we’ve got Camerata at Paulie’s. This is a great bar on Westheimer in Montrose. It has a modern-industrial look with a relaxed vibe. There’s also parking in the back, which is a HUGE plus in Montrose. They have two wine lists- one with bottles available and information about the wines. They have a pretty good price range, with some bottles as low as $29 and others for a few hundred. The other list is of wines by the glass and it changes daily. This is really cool because there is always something new to try. They have several options for 3 oz pours on their wines by the glass, which is also great. This gives you a chance to try a couple different wines instead of committing to full glasses.
Cru, A Wine Bar
Next up is Cru, A Wine Bar. This is a chain of wine bars with locations in Austin, Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston, Lexington, Denver, and Atlanta. The feel here is relaxed but classy with a good selection of wine and food. They have a pretty extensive wine list, with 30 options by the glass and 300 bottles. That’s a lot to choose from but they’re happy to make suggestions. They also have wine flights, which I like a lot because it’s a good way to try new things. Cru also has a really good happy hour and periodically hosts special events.
La Carafe is like an old-school neighborhood bar where everyone knows everyone. And if you don’t know anyone when you walk in, it feels so homey that you’ll walk out feeling like part of the gang. La Carafe is located in the oldest commercial building still in use in Houston and is the oldest bar in Houston. While it has changed owners over the years, the feeling of the bar has remained the same. They don’t have TVs or wi-fi, which encourages people to talk to each and make new friends. Their wine list is small but well-rounded. If you can’t find the perfect wine on the list, just ask about their off-menu bottles and you’re sure to find something you’ll love.
Ogun has a really cool take on the wine experience- it’s a wine bar and art gallery. They focus on African art and have quite a few African wines on the list. It includes a Pinotage from South Africa that is fantastic. If African wine isn’t your thing, they also have a good selection from other regions. There’s a lot of seating to hang out and chat with your friends and is a very open, inviting space.
I love all of these places and I hope you will, too! Where do you like to go for a nice glass of wine?