Our 10 Best: NYC Wine Bars

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Tin ceiling, marble bar, rows of wine bottles glinting in the candle light--what could be cozier than a wine bar late in the evening? (Shown: Gottino, in the West Village)

Menupages.com lists 110 wine bars in the city. From our perambulations around town, frequently stumbling on wine bars in remote areas, we'd guess there are twice that many. It's an appealing formula: A cafe decides to concentrate on wine, establishes a tidy collection of sure bets, wine-wise, then develops a small list of dishes to go with the wines, providing important sustenance, even though the primary function of the place is drinking. The ambiance is often intimate and appealing, the service personal, and the food fantastic in a simple sort of way.

The earliest wine bars in the city served Italian wines with Italian food, but nowadays the concept has been expanded to include French wines, Spanish wines, and eclectic mixes of wines. One new place (Xai Xai) even concentrates on South African vintages.

Following are our 10 favorite wine bars in the city, but first we begin with seven runners-up.

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Centro Vinoteca, post Leah. Will it still make the top 10? Cast your eye below.

Runners-up to Our 10 Best Wine Bars

Desnuda, 122 East 7th Street, 212-254-3515; Bar Veloce, 175 Second Avenue, 212-260-3200; Centro Vinoteca, 74 Seventh Avenue South, 212-367-7470; Stonehome, 87 Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-624-9443 ; Aliseo, 665 Vanderbilt Avenue, Brooklyn, 347-694-4368; Xai Xai, 365 West 51st Street, 212-541-9241; Bottega del Vino, 7 East 59th Street, 212-223-2724

Next: Numbers 6 thought 10

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