Nestled between ‘dealership row’ on 11th Ave, lay a casual yet authentic wine bar straight out of Italia overlooking De Witt Clinton Park. Who would’ve thought in the midst of Mercedes Benz and BMW you’d come across such a hidden gem of a wine bar. From the same owner of the delicious Italian meal Il Melograno, Il Baretto is an undercover gem that is “off the beaten path” where small plates of assorted cheeses, creative panini’s and generous selection of meats and fruits can be sampled and tasted with their magnificent array of Italian wines.
It was a cold night in Hell’s Kitchen and my fiancé and I decided to experiment and venture away from our standard Italian favorites, Montepulciano d’Abruzzo and Chianti Classico and submerged ourselves into a new, taste inspiring red wine from Sicily, Santa Anastasia Nero D’Avola. A reasonably priced bottle $34 and glass $10, moving out of our confort zone was a wise choice as we tasted a burst of flavor with smooth tannins that went well with our small bites! It was a very classic style of Italian wine yet had a modern touch which made it very well structured and easier to drink than some of the heavier Italian wines.
So if you’re ever in the neighborhood looking for a causal wine bar that will take you out of the City and into the heart of Sicily’s northern coastline, Il Barretto is your gem!
Saving the best for last….