There are plenty of restaurants in town with enviable wine lists — and we love them all. But if you’re looking for a spot that puts wine first, with great vibes, tons of expertise and expert pairings, our guide to the best wine bars in Tampa Bay is the list for you.
Wine Bars in Tampa
With a brand new location in Westshore Marina, Cru Cellars now has three locations around Tampa where you can enjoy their wine selection. Grab brunch in the secluded wine garden at their original location in Palma Ceia, or small bites and a drink to enjoy along the river at their Armature Works location.
Cru Cellars offers dozens of wines by the glass, as well as shelves stocked with small-production wines, including a large selection of organic and natural wines. When dining in, an on-staff sommelier can help guide your ordering to perfectly accompany charcuterie, entrees and apps.
Located in the corner of Oxford Exchange’s bespoke shop, just outside the main restaurant, is the world’s cutest* little champagne bar. The decor is impeccable, with the menus featuring custom illustrations in partnership with Rifle Paper Company, which all ties in to the decor and vibe. The champagne bar is only open until 5pm, so choose this spot for a day date or an early kick off to date night.
*I admit, I have not traveled the world extensively in search of its rival, but if not, it’s really close.
Cheese Please is a South Tampa staple. Stop in for flights of wine, cheese and a selection of grilled cheese sandwiches, or plan to attend one of their amazing tastings. Tastings ($40 per person) take place Friday and Saturday from 7-8:30pm and feature eight courses of cheese, paired with condiments and wine. Make sure to book your tasting in advance. Even if you aren’t stopping here for date night, pop in for cheese and accoutrements to take home.
Not far from the more college-y vibes of South Howard Ave, you’ll find Wine & Wood. They have a really diverse wine selection with charcuterie, small plates and pizzas to nosh on. If you can’t make up your mind, order a wine flight. Tip: wine flights are $5 off on Wednesdays.
Cooper’s Hawk Winery and Restaurant is an upscale dining staple in the Tampa Bay area located in the Westshore District. The winery produces around 573,000 cases of wine annually from the finest and freshest grapes and fruit around. Grapes come from California, Washington, and Oregon.
Head over to the Carrollwood Area to Cepas for a tavern-like wine bar experience featuring wines from across the globe. Cepas offers more than 150 wines by the glass and more than 400 by the bottle. The menu has been beautifully crafted with a Spanish-inspired Tapas flair, including cheeses, hams, Tortilla Espanola, and so much more.
Set in the heart of South Tampa’s beloved Hyde Park sits Wine Exchange Bistro and Bar. This wine lover’s paradise features a classic nod to the street-side cafes of Europe. Delight in crystal glass and stemware as you travel with your tastebuds, sipping wines from around the world. Pull up a seat at the covered patio or at the impressively stocked bar.
Wine Bars in St. Pete
Also located in St. Pete, is Annata Wine Bar and Restaurant. Annata is located on the waterfront at Straub Park and welcomes its guests to enjoy their modern cuisine, delightful hospitality, and unbeatable service. Enjoy dishes from Italy and beyond and take comfort in knowing the locality of the ingredients right from the Bay Area.
St. Pete’s newest wine bar can be found in the former A Taste for Wine location on Central Avenue. Owned by level two Sommelier Chris Ciarcia, Sauvignon features a massive variety of wines — everything from $30 to $1,200-a-bottle wines, with about 60 different wines available by the glass. Expect high end fare from the kitchen as well, with a menu described at contemporary American with an Italian twist.
If you love books and wine, this bookshop and wine bar in one is your place! This unique wine bar concept is also the perfect place to sharpen your wine knowledge. Visit on Fridays from 5-7pm for free tastings featuring a new selection of wines each week. Or, purchase tickets to one of Book + Bottle’s regular wine education happy hours, combining a guided tasting with learning more about wines. Topics covered range from rosé to pinot noir and more. Book lovers will also enjoy monthly bookclub sessions. Check the calendar for upcoming events.
Located just outside the St. Pete Pier, Bacchus is the perfect spot for lunch outside paired with the perfect wine. The menu is fresh and tasty and the outdoor dining area is beautiful.
Feature image credit: Wine & Wood