San Francisco Date Ideas: The 9 Best Wine Bar Datesby Jess Lander on May 09, 2013
As a neighbor to some of the world’s most famous wine country destinations, San Francisco serves as a tasting haven for vino novices, lovers, and oenophiles alike. Whether you’re on Team Red or Team White, pair a bottle of vino with a cheese plate and good conversation at any of these date spots.
408 Merchant St
Tucked in an alleyway and lit only by the Transamerica Pyramid windows, the Hidden Vine is a worthy find featuring more than 140 wines from both local and distant regions. Order up your vino with a seasonal flatbread to share and cozy up in front of the fireplace, or at one of the small tables lining a rustic brick wall.
1754 Polk St
A date at Amelie simulates a night in Paris, without the Eiffel Tower. Your romantic evening will unfold at a table constructed from an old wine barrel amidst a dark ambiance lit by red, glowing bottles. Arrive during Happy Hour for $10 customized flights—choose any three wines from an extensive, European-heavy list—and highlight your selections with some yummy cheese.
461 Pacific Ave.
Barrique’s central Financial District location makes it the perfect after work or pre-dinner drinks date spot, especially because it fills up fast. The sleek, contemporary bar is also the only place in the city where you can order 18 different wines on tap—meaning, straight from the barrel—without making the trek to wine country.
1666 Market St
Pause livens up the traditional wine bar atmosphere with colorful chalkboard art and an ambitious cork board that covers an entire wall. Perfect as a warm-up for dinner, it’s great for Happy Hour specials, hard-to-find boutique selections, and internationally-inspired vegetarian small plates. For a chiller and more locals-only vibe, head over to Yield, Pause’s (older) sister, located in the heart of the Dogpatch.
45 Rose St
This petite, French-inspired spot is so secluded that you have to be careful not to walk right by the orange “B” that hangs outside the door. So small that it only seats parties of four or less, Hotel Biron is perfect for a romance-seeking pair. Enjoy local art and exposed brick while you sip local and French varietals at a candlelit two-top, or the comfy couch—if you can score it first.
3232 Scott St
As summer approaches, Bin 38 gains a distinct advantage, with its sidewalk tables and tented outdoor patio that even boasts a fire pit. Sip and swirl over 50 small-production gems by the glass from across the globe, complemented by local and seasonal American bistro bites, or a full meal if you’re hungry. Stop in on Tuesdays to take advantage of 30% off over 200 bottles.
620 Post St.
Saunter past the front desk of the Fitzgerald Hotel and down the cheesy, dated carpet and you’ll run into what appears to be a quiet study with big leather armchairs and private nooks for intimate conversations. The dimly-lit study is actually the Barrel Room, a quiet wine bar specializing in foreign, small-production wines. Taste around the world with their flights or comparisons and make a date to return the next month to try their new rotating regional focus.
3330 Steiner St.
Nectar has most people sold once they hear about the 50% off Happy Hour special. But you’re also sure to love their divine truffle popcorn, two outdoor tables, and comfortable couches. Sit at the bar to steal glances at muted movies playing during pauses in the conversation.
568 Haight St.
Get there early for Happy Hour specials that include $4 carafes, then stay for a full-course meal. This chic spot specializes in Italian wines and dishes that feature locally-crafted meats and cheeses (even the menu is in Italian). Top off the meal with a cup of small-production gelato to share.
More San Francisco Date Ideas:
The Best North Beach Dates in San Francisco
The Best Day Trip Dates in San Francisco
The Best Brunch Dates in San Francisco
11 San Francisco Date Ideas As Unique as the City Itself
San Francisco Date Ideas: The Best Hiking and Biking Dates
San Francisco Date Ideas: The Best Rainy-Day Dates
San Francisco Date Ideas: The Best Outdoor Market Dates