Recently, the TS team had the opportunity for an impromptu date-night, and headed straight for one of our favorite local spots, Wine Country Bistro.
While Wine Country (WC) definitely has an upscale feel in both its’ dining room and decor, the large bar area and patio provide a welcome option for those who are feeling a little more casual. However, given the increasing popularity of this eatery, we still recommend reservations if you plan to go on a Friday or Saturday night. We usually prefer to sit at a table in the bar, because we like the more laid-back atmosphere in this area in comparison to the main dining room.
On our most recent trip, we were in the mood for a leisurely round of cocktails before ordering dinner. N. started with a Mojito, while S. opted for a glass of Chardonnay from the extensive wine list. We then ordered a cheese board from the appetizer menu, which is our standard choice on any visit to WC. Of all the restaurants in town we’ve tried, TS thinks that WC’s cheese board is hands-down, the best. The cheese selections vary depending on the day, but they are always unique, artisan and interesting. We especially love the Bayou Blue, and always enjoy the experience of lingering over this dish with good cocktails and good conversation. On a hot, summer evening, when our appetites are light, we sometimes make a meal out of WC’s cheese board and a good glass of wine.
The menu at WC is smaller, but very eclectic, and they usually offer two or three specials as well. On this particular evening, N. decided to order the special steak of the evening, a rib-eye, which was served with roasted potatoes and grilled asparagus, and he paired this selection with a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon . N. was impressed with the quality and size of his steak, and he found it to be well-cooked and full of flavor. He even enjoyed his asparagus, which he normally avoids like the plague elsewhere. S., on the other hand, chose the braised beef short rib, which was served with garlic whipped potatoes and roasted root vegetables, and she ordered a glass of Merlot to accompany it. Both N. and S. absolutely loved this dish, which was a compelling mixture of flavor and texture, and we fought over the last few bites. Overall, we both felt our entrées were well executed in both taste and presentation, and the good quality of the ingredients really shined through. Though the prices at WC are higher, we felt that we certainly got our money’s worth out of this meal.
Our service at WC was fairly good, especially for the bar area, and we had no complaints. However, we sat closer to the actual bar than we usually do, and noticed that the hectic pace of activity behind the bar was somewhat distracting. Particularly, bartenders were hand-crushing ice for drinks by thwacking rolled-up linens full of ice on the counter. While we appreciate the attention to detail, we realized we’d prefer to sit father away from the bar next time in order to avoid too much distraction.
On a side note, WC also offers lunch, and after perusing the prices, we think they are definitely comparable to all of the other restaurants in the Line Ave/ Pierremont area.
Overall, TS has enjoyed our numerous trips to WC. Though the higher prices make this an occasional treat for us, we feel that the quality we receive is well worth what we pay. The eclectic nature of this restaurant means we can drop in for a full meal, or just appetizers and cocktails if we’re in the mood. If you’re looking for food that is fresh, a little different and flexible for your mood, Wine Country is definitely worth a try.