In the last few years, more people have been leaving their New York City apartments and heading across the Hudson River to Jersey City. The new energy of the area has led to a growing nightlife filled with great restaurants and bars. And while there are still many who enjoy an ice cold beer, wine bars and shops have been sprouting up in the last few years. Learn more about this growing trend and find out where you can get your next glass of vino.
Restaurant, Wine Bar, Australian, $$$
Anyone who wants to step away from the hustle and bustle of city life should walk into Frankie. The Australian wine bar and restaurant has a bright ambience that’ll warm up any chilly day. Their menu caters to all diets, from the Waygu steak meat pie to the chickpea ricotta tortellini in coconut sauce. Aside from food, Frankie has a great assortment of natural wines from all over the world. They also rotate the selection regularly to give regulars a chance to try something new each time. If a cocktail is more your speed, try the Lovely Creature, a mezcal punch served in a cute frog vessel.
Bar, Vegetarian, Vegan, $$$
Pet Shop has a little bit of everything. The Downtown Jersey City watering hole has a stocked bar and a fully vegetarian and vegan menu. If you’re craving wine over beer, you’ll find PS Wine Bar downstairs with a large selection of natural wines. The space isn’t the largest, but after having a few glasses, you’ll be feeling cozy at this Jersey City wine bar.
Third & Vine
Cocktail Bar, Wine Bar, Tapas, French, American, $$$
Wine and cheese seem like a simple combination, but Third & Vine take it to another level with high-quality cheeses and a selection of pristine wines. Tell expert fromager Jamie Mayne what you like and what you won’t try, and she will put together a fine array of tastes to tickle your tastebuds. If you’re not sure about pairings, the Third & Vine staff will help you out and expose you to different vinos that will go well with their signature deviled eggs or the smoked duck sandwich. This wine bar will not only serve you a great meal but also teach you something about food and drink.
Restaurant, Italian, $$$
Roman Nose brings the traditional Italian recipes from the Fiore family to Downtown Jersey City. Whether you want a hearty meatball sandwich or a simple yet comforting bowl of Spaghetti Al Pomodoro made with Jersey tomatoes, each dish that comes out of the Roman Nose’s kitchen is the epitome of Italian comfort food, while still keeping things elegant and refined. To top it all off, the restaurant also has a perfectly curated list of Italian wines from Sardinia to Tuscany. The owners rotate the list twice a year to keep things fresh, and select wines that that you won’t easily find elsewhere in the area.
Bistro, Restaurant, European, $$$
Featured in Zagat’s “New Jersey’s Top 50,” Satis Bistro is a classical European restaurant that serves a great meal and has a great wine list. Located in the Paulis Hook neighborhood, the two-floor, picturesque bistro offers an early happy hour at 4pm that includes wine and tapas deals. Perfect for an intimate dinner date or a quick glass of Pinot Noir after work, Satis Bistro is a spot where the locals can relax and unwind.
Restaurant with Rooms, American, Seafood, $$$
Maritime Parc opened its doors in 2009 and has been hosting weddings and other special events for the locals ever since. With the Liberty Landing Marina and the New York City skyline in the background, it undoubtedly has a beautiful setting, especially during the day. It also has a restaurant inside that serves dinner throughout the week and brunch on Sundays. The menu is mainly composed of seafood paired with fresh and organic local ingredients. Maritime Parc has an extensive wine list that includes robust reds, crisp whites and luxurious champagnes.
Bar, Restaurant, American, $$$
If you don’t pay attention, you may just walk by The Archer. But its modest storefront makes the bar and restaurant extra special because those who venture through the doors will be in on a hidden secret. Fashioned like a rustic cabin, take a seat at the bar or grab a table and be prepped to take a food and drink ride. While they’re known for playing with game meats on the menu, there are a number of options for vegetarians. When it comes to drinks, they win the cocktail category. However, The Archer isn’t a one-trick pony: they have a solid wine list and know what’s what when it comes to rosés.
Bar, Restaurant, Italian, $$$
Razza offers a locally sourced menu that has given the restaurant its reputation. While the restaurant is known for its top-notch pizza, Razza has also paid close attention to their drinks menu. The wine selection has been curated to perfectly match with whatever pizza pie you choose. If you’d prefer something a little stronger, try one of their craft cocktails.
Madame Claude Bis
Bistro, French, $$$
After opening Madame Claude Cafe more than a decade ago, owners Alice Troïetto and Mattias Gustafsson opened their new food spot, Madame Claude Bis. Located only a block away from White Eagle Hall, the bistro will take you on a culinary journey through France, with its delicious menu that includes a variety of mussel dishes and savory crepes (galettes), as well as a many wines. Madame Claude Bis has a great ambience for a romantic date. If you’re looking for some entertainment, Gustafsson’s band Manouche Bag entertains diners with jazz music on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Madame Claude Wine
If you can’t make it to Madame Claude Bis for dinner, stop by Madame Claude Wine. Located by Hamilton Park, the wine and spirit shop sells what the restaurant serves as well as a vast selection of other varieties from all over the world. If you’re not sure what to get, one of the friendly staff will help you out. There is also a selection of gourmet snacks to enjoy.
Not sure what wine to take to a dinner party? CoolVines will answer all vino questions. With a wide selection of wines, beers and spirits, this Downtown Jersey City shop will not only help you pick the perfect Pinot Noir, they will also deliver it to you. Although they’re not a Jersey City wine bar, CoolVines does host events regularly, so you can taste a vintage or a trying something new before buying it.