Whether buying the expertly-chosen bottle for oohs and aahs, gift basket trimmings or running out to a holiday party in a hurry, here are some places convenient for getting your wine:
651 Vanderbilt Avenue; 718-230-3216
If interested in venturing out of bounds of well-known grape varieties (Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Grigio, etc.), this is where you'll find an expert guide. "We focus on unique wines made my individual, small producers – not necessarily bigger producers," said Fermented Grapes employee Matt (who declined to give his last name). Their newsletter subscribers even get a lowdown on tastings held on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The website is handy with descriptions, prices and categories like Sustainably-farmed, Staff Picks, or Under 10 Dollars. More info .
595 Vanderbilt Avenue; 718-783-WINE
Also on the Prospect Heights' main drag, Vanderbilt Avenue, Wine Exchange sells a large selection of major producers from all over the world, and stocks a considerable sake shelf. Future renovations will bring a tasting room and cellar for fine wines. More info .
Love Liquors and Wine
797 Washington Avenue; 718-399-8644
Proprietor Thomas Walsh was born and raised in Prospect Heights and has been in the business of selling wine and spirits since 1977. A life-size, rum-running pirate adorns the exterior and inside, customers will find bargain deals like 2 bottles for $10, and a large number of Napa Valley wines. According to Walsh, his shop is the only one on Washington Avenue and east that's non-partitioned – which means without the bullet-proof glass. Love's delivers to Park Slope, Crown Heights and around Eastern Parkway. More info .
Grand Plaza Liquors
764 Washington Avenue; 718-789-3975
So, speaking of the bullet-proof glass, there's Grand Plaza Liquors. You enter the partitioned area, and if you aren't menacing, they'll buzz you into the wine room. There you can peruse bottles, from the magnum big-name bottles, to some lesser-knowns, too. They'll also deliver until 11 p.m. and there's a $10 minimum for using a credit card. Rough around the edges but serviceable if you're in a pinch, or on your way to the Eastern Parkway subway stop. More .
Garry's Wine & Liquor
80 St. Marks Avenue; 718-789-7056
Big selection in gleaming white pine on the Flatbush border of Park Slope. The screeching doorbell leaves something to be desired. More .
Mei Chi Liquors
389-391 Flatbush Avenue; 718-622-1403
Convenient from the Grand Army Plaza subway, this place has weekend wine and liquor tastings. More
Park Slope Fine Wines & Liquors
158 Park Place; 718-622-9253
A diamond-in-the-rough, this store carries wines ranging from obvious to obscure. With Italian-American roots, the owners have imported a broad sampling of what's grown and cultivated into some of the worlds best wine varieties from around the Mediterranean. This is where you can find an unusual intersection of very affordable Italian and organic wines. More .